Welcome to the FlipNerd.com Expert Interview Show Top 10 series, where we share our top 10 shows from 2017. In this episode, Larry Higgins shares why many investors, myself included, having been missing out on a huge opportunity by throwing away our very best prospective leads…without even knowing it. In this award winning show, we talk about the power of skip tracing hard to find leads, and how few of your competition are taking these extra few steps. With the market as competitive as it is, this is an incredible lesson in how to do deals without spending without spending a lot more on advertising. This is one of our top 10 shows for 2017…let’s start the show.
Mike: This is the flipnerd.com Expert Real Estate Investing show. The show for real estate investors whether you’re a veteran or brand new. I’m your host, Mike Hambright and each week I bring you a new expert guest that will share their knowledge and lessons with you. If you’re excited about real estate investing, believe in personal responsibility, and taking control of your life and financial destiny, you’re in the right place.
This is episode number 359 and my guest is Larry Higgins of skipgenie.com. Now unless you’re able to find more deals than you can handle, you’re going to love today’s show. I’m excited, for myself even, as I know this is going to help me and my team do more deals no doubt about it.
For years, a by-product of me spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on direct mail, is returned postcards and letters which we’ve done nothing with. We basically just throw it away. Well, it turns out, that’s where the gold’s at. We talk all about skip tracing today and how to track down sellers that everyone else has stopped looking for. If you’re interested in finding deals or you have little to no competition, then this show is for you.
Please help me welcome, Larry Higgins to the show. Larry, welcome to the show.
Larry: Hey, Mike. Thanks for having me, I appreciate it.
Mike: Yeah, yeah. I’m excited to talk about this because you know, every body knows, especially a veteran real estate investor that have been doing this for a while, understands how competitive the market is right now. You and I know a lot of really successful real estate investors, and there’s a lot of people that have been rock stars for a long time, that are like scratching their head, like “What can I do differently because some of the stuff I’ve been doing for a long time, just isn’t working the way that it used to.”
So I’m excited to talk about skip tracing today because I told you, we used to fill boxes full of letters and postcards that bounce back to us and we kind of take them off our list and throw them away. So sounds like we might have been throwing out some gold for a while, I guess, is that the case?
Larry: Yeah. I cringe just thinking about it.
Mike: It was my money. I’m cringing.
Larry: I’m cringing vicariously, but yeah.
Mike: Well, hey, before we jump into this topic, maybe tell us a little bit more about your background and kind of how you got into this.
Larry: Okay. So I haven’t been in real estate for a really long time by any measure. I think I’m at almost four years. I have a construction management background, graduated from Texas A&M, worked in multi-family construction, worked overseas for a little while, came home, found myself in a job I hated for the first time.
And I kind of had an interest in buying some . . . building up a rental portfolio over time. I’d never really given it serious thought, the real estate appealed to me for different reasons. And the job I had just kept eating at me, it was just boring. Good company, good people I worked with, great boss, good pay, I just dreaded going to the office everyday. But you know what? Life’s too short and I jumped into real estate. I didn’t know much about it, learned really fast. I didn’t even own my own house at that point.
I was fortunate, I got a mentor with, I believe you know Mitch Steven? He’s just a great guy. Mitch is phenomenal. He’s an owner finance guru and I did my first two deals, owner financed them, not home runs by any means but good solid deals and I got into wholesaling. I was going to build a little stock pile of cash to do stuff and I’m still wholesaling three years later. That’s kind of how I got into it.
Mike: Awesome, awesome. Well, what is skip tracing? Let’s start off by talking about what it even is, what does that mean?
Larry: So technically the traditional definition is, skip trace would apply to people who skipped out on their debt, so creditors try and find them, repo guys, banks, whoever it is. And that’s where the term comes from. But as it applies to real estate, it’s basically you’re trying to find a property owner for some reason or another. You may think they’re a potential motivated seller.
Specifically in real estate you could apply to vacant houses you see, to return mail you get back from your mail campaigns, or in a broader sense, you’re really doing volume, you could skip trace a list that you might normally mail of a thousand or several thousand properties. You could skip trace the whole thing to get phone numbers and [inaudible 00:04:57], rather than [inaudible 00:04:58] call these people.
Mike: Yeah. What a lot of real investors don’t know, is that I get letters and postcards back and I just haven’t like, who wants to fool with that? They don’t know how to find the person. But you just kind of move on, you don’t really think about well, yeah, everybody’s given up now. So what if I take it to another level?
I mean that’s the opportunity here, right? Is you found a house that fits your criteria, whatever list you’re emailing to, but the post office says that they don’t know where that persons at. You already know the address of the house, you just have to find a different way to find the person than contacting them via mail right?
Larry: And sometimes the post office does you a very valuable favor by stamping on that piece of mail, “deceased” “or “dead” or “vacant.” They confirm that for you. And that right there, especially when they tell you the owner is deceased, well if you are weren’t mailing [inaudible 00:06:00], you know, if you thought that person was alive but the post office tells you they’re deceased, that’s pretty good information to have. That moves to the top of my list pretty quick.
Mike: My heart just [inaudible 00:06:13] when you said that, because I know we’ve got those and I think we scan them. We have my VA take them off the list, and then we throw them away. That’s crazy. I’m sad and I’m excited at the same time because I know we’re going to do things a little differently going forward.
Larry: Yeah. And there’s a prime example right there. So I’m paying so that it can look like an owner occupied house. Nothing fancy or sexy about it. And when it gets returned to you, you find out they’re actually deceased, well it’s become what I call Invisible Estate, nobody . . . you know, it’s not on a probate list, it’s not on an estate list because on paper they look like they’re alive for the appraisal district. Now you just have to find those errors and I really like those kinds of deals for different reasons.
Mike: Yeah. Probably and truthfully am I right by saying that the biggest . . . one of the biggest opportunities is that most people have been doing what I do, where they’re dropping mail and as soon as it starts to get hard you’re like well, “Not worth the effort, so, move on.” But I’ve kind of been looking at that the wrong way the whole time. I mean, that’s the case is, a lot of people don’t do the skip tracing part, right? They just stop because it doesn’t fit their model. They’re too busy to do anything else with, right?
Larry: Yes. So it’s actually, your mind set, it’s a complete 180. It’s a complete paradigm shift. My mindset is the harder they are to find, the more and more I’m like a dog with a bone. The harder they are to find, the more determined I am to find them, because I know everybody else has given up and it’s just the higher the likelihood of a deal and a better deal at that.
Mike: So give a few common examples I guess why the post office doesn’t know how to contact anybody related to that house.
Larry: Well, could just be just laziness. They don’t do a forwarding address, or could be, you know, the owner died. It’s not uncommon to find deceased owners in that scenario we just talked about. The family doesn’t do anything, they’ll just let the property sit idle and it’s hard for some people to believe this, but we’re used to very orderly, there’s a right way to die.
Have a will, probate the will, take care of the family affairs. A lot of people don’t do that. A lot of people don’t. So I’ve never gone after a probate. I know people use probates lists, they make money off probate lists, but right off the bat I don’t like that list because they show little sophistication of means I don’t like. They had a will and they probated a will.
I’m sure you get . . . I know people get the deals, I’m not saying it doesn’t work, I want the people that need more help, and sometimes what you find is . . . if you’re lucky, the heirs may not even know they have legal interest in the property. Or another scenario is sometimes they think after X amount of months or years, say the owner dies, they just assume that you’ll call up a son or daughter or whoever the heir might be.
They’ll say, well “You’ll need to call the county.” Or the county owns it now or the bank. They just assume it’s been foreclosed on without . . . they just take that guess, well, they’ve mentally accepted zero for that property. So that generally equates to a pretty good day if you can get it contracted.
Mike: Yeah. If somebody knows that they have a chance to kind of solve that problem and make some money in the process that they didn’t know was coming. They probably have some motivation to get it done quickly and you’re probably not someone . . .
Larry: If someone would find . . . if some of them would like to sell, they may have even gotten mail one way or another. Maybe mail was going to the house, maybe it wasn’t returned mail but mail was going, getting delivered and the family was getting it, or maybe they updated a mailing address to go to one of the relatives. They may have a . . . this has happened to us several times just in the last few years.
So they’ll have a stack of mail but they haven’t called anybody. Just because they didn’t think that they could sell for some . . . because there was no will. Or there are taxes, whatever that problem is, but if you can get them on the phone and talk to them and say, “What if I can solve that problem and do this, this, this,” and then you can get $5,000 or whatever that number is. You will help people that way.
Mike: So let’s talk a little about that. So when you do skip trace somebody, you get contact information back for some people that were kind of known family members? Or how does that work?
Announcer: Are you looking to change your life through real estate investing? If you’re interested in either getting started or taking your business to the next level please check out FlipNerd’s private program at theinvestormachine.com. This is the most robust real estate investor coaching, networking, and mastermind on the planet and designed for your success.
If you’re ready to roll up your sleeves, ready to take personal responsibility for your own success and ready to dive in to a world class instructional coaching program that provides you step by step instruction to help you achieve financial freedom, then you should apply today.
Spaces are limited and candidates are only considered after an application and interview process. Our 12 month investor program is unparalleled. Think you might be a fit? Learn more today at theinvestormachine.com.
Mike: . . . kind of known family members? Or how does that work?
Larry: So, whether alive or deceased, just a very basic report will show the likely relatives. And part of the issue with even people that do skip trace, they give up too easily. So, some people especially with returned mail and vacant houses, just the nature of those alone, the owners tend to be harder to get on the phone. Whether you can’t get a good phone number, or you don’t know if it’s a good number, or they just won’t respond to you.
If I know it’s an inherited property, or I know that it’s a vacant property, I don’t hesitate to pull reports on the relatives and start dialing them. Because there could be a multitude of reasons why you can’t reach that owner, could be in prison, could be working overseas, could be in mental hospital, could be at hospice, these are real scenarios we’ve dealt with.
Mike: Right, right. And how do you find out who is the actual . . . who has the kind of signing authority because you’re not digging into probates and stuff like that, like maybe it has gone through probate and it’s still there. But how do you find out?
Well, it’s one thing to call family members and say, “Hey, I . . . we’re interested in buying this property at 123 main street, and it looks like you may . . . ” How would you . . . talk about what you would say, like, “You may be an heir or do you happen to know who the seller is.” Talk about that process of talking to people that you’re contacting and then finding out who it actually does have kind of decision making authority for the property.
Larry: Well, the vast majority of cases, if the appraisal district just shows that the owners name not in an estate or anything like that, generally the vast majority of cases there’s no probate so I won’t even look for a probate record. If I know [inaudible 00:13:26] the mail got returned, it just tells me call. So, in Texas our heirship laws are pretty easy, in most states heirship laws are somewhat similar, just a matter of, “Can you do an affidavit of heirship or do you have to probate . . . go through the probate process?”
Fortunately, I’ll say fortunately, it’s easier for us, quicker, we can do the affidavit of heirship. So if I know the owner is deceased, I just look for the children or who the likely children are, the closest relatives. And I’m just looking for that one point of contact that can confirm what I’m thinking, help me get in touch with the other heirs and start that conversation with them and just do the affidavit heirship. And some of our customers we deal with in other states, they have to do the probate process.
Well, it depends on your mindset. I’m almost jealous of them because if there was no will, your offer to those people is much more valuable than ours because you’re willing to pay . . . assuming you’re willing to do what you need to do, to get the deal but pay for the attorney, take care of the probate, going through probate court and all that, you bring a lot more value to the table that way. Takes longer to get it done, but your margins are probably even better than what we get when we do the affidavits here.
Mike: So what are some of the common issues? Like I know there’s other people that skip trace, there’s lots of services out there, what are some of the common problems to people that might have even skipped tracing in the past, but they don’t . . . you know, they’re making mistakes, they’re not doing it the way that you guys do it now?
Larry: First and foremost being . . . using the, what I call the lower tier services, that’s Spokeo, Intelius, White Pages. If somebody has been living on a property for 20 years, pretty stable, you can probably get a good phone number from them, but again, I go back to the nature of return known vacants. You need to start with quality data.
If you don’t have that . . . again you may not be able to reach them, at least you know you’ve got the best data you can get, as far as phone numbers, relatives and things like that. And just, whether or not they’re even alive. You start running in circles if you have bad data.
Just someone I helped last week, he was trying to get a good phone number for a lady in Maryland and we ran a report for him, because I don’t care how good her phone number is, unless it runs to heaven, you’re not getting in touch. He didn’t know she had died. He’s a lower tier provider, I think it was Intelius, and it showed she was 72 and alive. Well, we were able to confirm that she had died and pointed him to the direction of the heirs. So, that’s one issue.
The other thing is just giving up too soon like I said. Some people you’re not going to get on the phone, but if it’s a qualified lead such as returned mail or a vacant that has, say, tax issues or something to that effect, I have no hesitation. If I can’t get him on the phone, I’ll call relatives and I will keep calling till somebody gets me in touch with them. And probably the most costly mistake, this doesn’t happen really often, but when there’s a deceased owner and no obvious relatives. Well, I’ve been guilty of this in the past, but not anymore, do your research.
Everybody has heirs. Could be second cousins, could be distant, but some are harder to find than others. But there’s occasions where, you know, it doesn’t happen real often but we’ll bring in a genealogist. It’s not by accident the best deal we did last year, we had to use a genealogist to help us find a couple of people. We just needed to know who they were and then we could find them and she helped us identify them.
Mike: Yeah. So is it a lot harder with more common names? Like if somebody’s last name is “Smith” versus something that’s unique to find? Maybe descendants or heirs?
Larry: We haven’t used that . . . we really haven’t had enough case studies I guess to make a good point about that.
Now, in general just finding whether they’re dead or alive, if all you have is a name, you basically need two points of reference to search for somebody. But you’re right. A lot of times I will do an obituary search for like a “John Smith.” That’s an issue. “John Smith” in Houston, there are a lot of obituaries, so, you know, whereas if I search “Phineas Cooper” in [inaudible 00:17:59] Texas, I’m probably going to find his obituary a lot easier.
Mike: Right, right. Awesome. So how do you find . . . what are some of the applications, like how do you find addresses? Is it just a by-product of your direct mail? Or talk a little bit about how you kind of find those addresses.
Larry: So there’s different ways. Initially I got into . . . starting out brand new, I did the mail route. I was never a high volume guy, I was on a tight budget. I just never really . . . I got a couple of deals, wasn’t really big on mail, and then I just decided to be real focused on driving for dollars. So, I did skip trace my returned mail, then I started skip tracing vacants. That’s how I initially did it. And then I got to where I would just take pretty qualified lists here in [inaudible 00:18:47] acquisitions.
I would create my own pretty tight lists and I would just start researching them. I said nowadays we’re not as much volume as we used to be. We used to cast a pretty wide net and we’d get a lot of phone calls but it worked. Now, it’s not as many calls, fewer deals, but they’re much more substantial deals. So I’ll just take a list and start working through it.
Mike: Yeah. I know some people . . . even different mail houses that I’ve worked with. So when you buy your list depending on where you buy it from or when you mail your list, sometimes there’s a little bit of an extra cost, sometimes it’s just part of their offering, is that they scrub it against the USPS deliverability list, I’m not sure the exact name.
But they’ll like for example, the companies that I buy my list from, they usually . . . I don’t know if they just say this or not, but they say that they’ll bounce it off the list for me for no charge, but normally they charge people but because it’s me.
And then even my print house that mails it, runs it against their list and truthfully what they do is, especially the print house, I’ve already paid for that list and if they take people off, they say this is undeliverable, I’ve never even asked them to send me that list back. They just take it off so they don’t waste money mailing. But that’s where the gold is, right? It’s crazy that we’re having this conversation.
Larry: It sounds like they’re probably scrubbing you against . . . like a lot of these places have the vacant list which is . . . that’s generated from the post office [inaudible 00:20:24] HUD and all that, that’s probably what they’re scrubbing against. Wouldn’t necessary be a bad . . . that’s an entertaining, interesting thought there as far as a quality list.
Mike: Yeah, yeah. So kind of a by-product of your list that bounce back to you, you could buy . . . I guess you could buy. So are there certain lists that you buy that you just . . . I mean you don’t skip trace anything. How do you know, that it’s going, like, bounce back, that you can’t . . . it’s not getting forward until somewhere.
Like let’s say you bought a tax delinquent list or something like that. Do you have to run it through some process to know that I’m going to try to call, or do this skip tracing and call people? Or where do you draw the line between the mail could get delivered versus I just want to try to call them and reach out?
Larry: See, that’s one thing. I don’t do any mail anymore. It’s just 100% research and call. And even on the lists, like I can take a tax delinquent list, maybe I’ll pick the top 200 tax delinquencies or tax judgments in a certain area, say out of state tax owners, or out of state owners with tax issues and just skip trace the entire list. Specifically, I’m looking for deceased owners or people. Sometimes you’ll find owners in their 90s or 100s, literally over 100 years old.
They could actually be deceased, but their death was never reported to the Social Security Death Index, so they could look alive on paper. So that’s one thing we teach our customers to do is to pay attention to the ages. Most people’s deaths get reported but sometimes . . . every once in a while you’ll find someone shows up 110 years old, well, I’m pretty sure they’re . . . well, if they are alive they’re not in their home probably.
Mike: So some of the . . . I know you have a product that you guys have created that’s called “Skip Genie.” And when you skip trace somebody does it come back? And does it tell you their age? Like what information does it provide you as a customer?
Larry: So we give you all the key information you’ll need as far as helping the [inaudible 00:22:33] and in getting the contact. So you get . . . we call it the “Death Indicator.” It will tell you whether they are alive or deceased. Gives you their age, their address history, the phone numbers associated with them, possible email addresses and financial distress indicators.
We’re not giving you the details on those, but if they have bankruptcies, liens, or judgments, we’ll give you an account for reach. With all that data, even if you had, say you had a thousand pieces of returned mail, I’m always all about prioritization especially if you have limited means to do phone calls or something to that effect.
Filter for the deceased owners first and then filter by age in descending order. Who has a new out of state address compared to what you thought their address . . . the property address. Who’s got the financial issues. So there’s a lot of different ways, a lot of ways to prioritize your efforts there.
Mike: And when you do these skip traces, based on the owner’s name and last known address, are those the two pieces of info . . . what’s the kind of critical information you need?
Larry: So when we do it we use owner name and property address, 90% of people are going to . . . there’s going to be a result when you use those two points of reference. Sometimes they’re so far removed from that property or maybe they never even lived there, they owned it, but that was the only association. The utility or nothing [inaudible 00:23:56] there. Occasionally they won’t show up in a report and then we can search a mailing address or some other options to try and get that report on them.
Mike: Right, right. Awesome, awesome. So are there any other like . . . if somebody wanted to start doing this, if they’re listening to this show right now and they see the opportunity like, you know, is there, and I’m like waking up to, like what do they do to get started? Where do you go . . . because for me, I know in my mind it’s like hey, one, the easy way for me to start probably a by-product of the direct mail I’m already sending. I’m sending a lot of direct mail in two different markets and again, we’re just disposing of this stuff if it bounces back. So, I know that’s crazy but . . . so that’s an obvious way to get started.
If you weren’t doing direct mail like you, do you just go after some kind of highly motivated lists and try to target people that way? Maybe, just explain a little bit about how to get started, whether you’re already mailing or whether you’re not and you might want to try to find subject properties another way, I guess.
Larry: Yeah. That’s what I love about skip tracing in general, and one of the reasons for doing what we are, it’s so versatile and there’s so much utility in it. So whether you have tons of experience, done a lot of deals, you can find a way to apply this with just . . . if all you did was return mail it would be worth the investment. Worth the time to do it.
Other people, maybe it’s just taking a really targeted create your own, a really targeted list, and you just want to call, just cold call maybe a hundred people. And when I say a really good list, an example would be maybe estates with severe tax delinquencies and the mailing address is out of state, or expired listings with an out of state owner with serious tax delinquencies.
I try and check as many good indicators as I can in a list. Or you could literally take a tax delinquent list, maybe pay a VA to go through address by address, go to Google Street View and see which one is looking disrepair and vacant. So now I’ve checked two boxes I love, it’s vacant and there’s a tax issue. I’m real big on the tax list.
Foreclosure, pre-foreclosures, [inaudible 00:26:21] things like that. Or, if you’re brand new on a tight budget. I’ve seen it, this is what I did. You know, drive for dollars. You can stretch those dollars a lot further and my goal with our newer customers is to help them get their footing. That first good deal, where they kind of take . . . catch their breath a little bit. To me the number one sign of a good . . . the number one overall indicator of a possible deal is if they can house a disrepair. There’s ways to even prioritize those but that’s kind of how the different mix of ways you can come up with these properties to skip trace.
Mike: Yeah, yeah, that’s awesome. Well, let’s talk a little bit about kind of operationally. So you’ve got people that are individual investors that are kind of doing it all, they’re hustling. So that’s kind of obvious, they’ll be doing the calling themselves, and following up on leads and doing different levels of research that need to be done.
For some of the bigger folks that want to kind of implement this in, this sounds like one of those things that is hard to probably hand off to an international VA because it takes some familiarity with kind of how things work here, or maybe a higher level of research or whatever.
But just talk about how people that are kind of doing some volume now and want to pull this in, like operationally you can have different people to help carry the burden because some of them have more experience, like me for example, you know, I don’t have any . . . there’s no more time left in my day. So let’s just talk about me, if I wanted to go do this, I’m like, do I need to outsource to a salesperson initially do it, or is it something that an admin can start with and then hand it off to a salesperson or how have you seen that work best?
Larry: You covered some different scenarios that work. So we have some people that are starting to use what we call Overseas Call Centers. They’re not to negotiate. Their job is to get somebody on the phone and figure out if they want to sell or not or they, you know, need help selling or something. Last year we had a lady in our office, there was a huge learning curve for us the last year and a half.
This lady had experience in cold calling somewhat real estate related but not with investors. But we were paying her $15 an hour. We developed scripts and a bunch of things to smooth the process out. Initially she was manually dialing, then we got set up on the auto dialers and things like that. Having her in the office, she couldn’t negotiate anything. Her job was just to dial the numbers, figure out if they wanted to sell and get them on the phone with me or Will.
We were paying her $15 an hour, but she brought in just for calling, she brought in a lot of money, very worth it. Minimal training really. It was kind of painful because we’d never done it, but now we look back and we’re like, okay, we can do that. Or maybe you want to . . . you’re a pretty busy guy, you don’t . . . maybe you do want . . . she had to retire. I’d want to hire again, but the next time, I don’t want anybody handing off to me. I want an acquisition agent that can do the calls. They can do everything at that point. That way I don’t have to keep getting pulled back into it and things like that run the leads.
So you could do the in house, you could get one or two VAs overseas or call center. There’s a call center’s stateside here. We haven’t used them but I know they exist. Or you can do a combination of a slide broadcast where you send the ringless voicemail out. Take a list of a hundred or a thousand properties and just send it out, and see what comes back to you while you work the other leads as you get to them.
There’s a lot . . . a lot of it just depends on what the investor, you know . . . you’re very experienced in scaling up, putting people in the right position, training and setting that . . . putting that system in place. I could easily see you being able to hire somebody to do the calls, get them training and just sit there and that’s what they do, is call.
Mike: At first, my guess is that first round when you find out, these are all the potential heirs of the property. You’re probably calling through a lot of people, they may not even know that they have any say, you know, like you said, they don’t even necessarily know that the property is still for sale or . . . initially, you’re just trying to get somebody on the phone to . . . you probably get a ton of feedback, right?
When you say, “We want to buy this property at 123 Main Street and it looks like Joe Brown used to live there, was that your father?” You’re kind of like listening, like really, what do they say like “Oh, no. My uncle was responsible for that.” You probably learn a lot just by getting somebody on the phone that knows something right? Because all you know is some potential addresses.
Larry: You are exactly right. A lot of times, they’ll cut you off and just start telling you. Our script, without reading the whole thing, you get to a point in the script, “I was just trying to reach out and get in touch with the relatives or whoever owns or controls this property now and see if they’ll have any interest in selling it.”
A lot of times before you even get that far, “Oh, that was my dad’s house.” They’re telling you the whole story. Or it’s his house or that so and so is taking care of it, it’s surprising to me for that . . . for the deceased owners or estates, they’re pretty open about everything in general. They volunteer information.
Mike: That’s awesome. That’s awesome. So I guess the best thing is, in terms of getting started, how can somebody get started? I want to kind of bring this to a close here and talk about how people can get started. Why don’t you tell us what you would recommend. I assume it’s finding a list, finding a way to like get a list to focus on, that would probably be your first thing, right?
Larry: Yeah. Figure out, where would you start, are you bringing new . . . do you have vacants? Do you have a list of them already? Or do you have a lot of returned mail, or maybe you’ve thrown all your return mail away and you’re just going to look for a . . . create a really quality list. You know, you could go and pull a list of weed abatements from the municipality or something, who’s got weed abatement liens recently or something to that effect. So figure out what your list would be.
Second step would be to figure out, how much time can you put into calling this? How many properties are there? And what would it take? If it’s just you, you may not know that answer if you’ve never called. You’ve never had to go through that process.
My number one recommendation is don’t bite off more than you can chew at once because it can get, even with a good CRM, it can become a headache when you’ve got a lot of different leads open. Just pick five or ten and run the ground completely, and then move on to the next. Don’t try and do too much at once. You can generally knock out quite a few in a day or two.
Mike: And I think probably one of the big things, is as people are listening to this, are you the type of person that’s comfortable just picking up the phone and calling people randomly. Because a lot of people are uncomfortable with that, but it’s something you’ve got to be good at, or you’ve got to find someone that is.
Larry: To this day I hate calling. Absolutely. But my mindset is there’s 50,000,100,000 or $150,000 on the other side of that phone. I have to dial those numbers to go get it and there’s money there, dialing for a dollar is what it amounts to. Yeah. Even if they don’t want to sell, I’ve had people literally thank me for calling. Okay, you’re welcome. It was no big deal, it’s not bad. Don’t let the fear overcome you. You’ve just got to do it.
Mike: Awesome, Well, Larry if folks want to learn more about . . . so you guys, we didn’t talk about it a lot because we don’t want to like pitch things here, but you guys have a product. I mean you do this, and you’ve created kind of a better mousetrap that is super reasonable.
I mean, even some of the competitors I know you guys have, you guys you’re priced really reasonably. And it’s much more targeted for skip tracing potential sellers and not just a general skip trace, like how do I find some long lost boyfriend or girlfriend or something like that right? So tell us a little bit more about your product and then where folks can learn more about it.
Larry: So we started skipgenie.com and one of the reasons was, there’s an under served market, first of all, especially the more experienced people, that have been in the game for a while. It’s getting more and more competitive, mail is very saturated, So we know there’s a demand for skip tracing in general, but there’s nobody out their that teaches you what to do with that information. What if you can’t reach that person or . . . giving you scripts to talk to people, work out different scenarios, weekly Q&A calls, whatever issue you might have.
We’re going to kick off our weekly call next week actually, we have a vested interest in helping our customer to be successful and I, obviously I [inaudible 00:35:50] we’re talking about skip tracing. That’s why we started it and so we do provide the data. We tell people we’re not just a data provider. We’ll give you the script, ongoing support, if you’ve got a really hot deal with a short fuse, I’m somewhat accessible. I can’t guarantee how quickly I’ll reply but I’m going to do everything I can to help our customers get deals.
Mike: Awesome. So where do they go to learn more?
Larry: They go to skipgenie.com and they can always email me directly. It’s [email protected] and I’ve got no problems, I enjoy talking to people especially . . . whatever level you’re at, just talking strategy, how you can implement it, what you’re doing. Maybe have a very specific property you’re going . . . that’s how I met Will. Will has done over a thousand deals. In a roundabout way he found out I was helping people, this was a while back. I was doing skip traces here and there. And he was trying to find an owner, and that’s how we kind of teamed up initially.
Mike: Awesome. Well, this is great. This is great stuff. I know I’m going to dive into this for sure with my team, so we’ll have the links for skip genie and a few other things we mentioned in the show down below here. But I appreciate you spending some time with us today.
Larry: I appreciate you taking the time to have me. I enjoyed it.
Mike: Yeah. This is great information. I mean, truthfully we’re going to start talking more and more about lead generation and how to navigate. We’ve had a lot of great guests on the show, but we’re going to start talking a lot more about how to navigate this, kind of more challenging market and more lead generation and things like that. So this is perfect for where we’re at right now because a lot of people can use this information so, I appreciate you sharing it with us.
Larry: Yeah. This is one of the other things that gets me, skip tracing, a lot of people have heard of it, real estate investors but it’s just kind of a throw away line. See it vacant, just skip trace the owner. Nobody talks about in depth and how to really utilize it, so hopefully it’ll help some people.
Mike: Awesome. Well, thanks for spending time with us, thanks for sharing your information. We’ll add the links down below the video. And for those of you that are listening to the show, thanks for joining us for another episode. We’re going to keep firing them at you and we’re going to keep bringing you great guests like Larry. So everybody, thanks for joining us today.
I always forget to ask this at the end of my shows, but if you have not given us a rating on iTunes or Stitcher Radio, anywhere else where you watch, we would really love it . . . podcasters don’t talk about this a whole lot, but the more our show shows up higher in the rankings, the more excited we get and the more we want to keep doing our show and bring you good value.
So if you enjoyed the show after 300 and . . . if you don’t enjoy the show after 360 episodes, if you’ve listened to all of them, then you don’t to give me a rating. But if you like the show, you like what we’re doing here, it gets me pumped up, that somebody took the time to give us a good rating, give us some feedback on iTunes or wherever else you listen to us. So, thanks for doing that.
One more time, Larry, thanks again. Great to see you my friend.
Larry: Thanks, Mike.
Mike: All right every body, we’ll see you next time.
Thanks for joining us for this episode of the flipnerd.com investing show. If you’re not yet an elite member of FlipNerd you’re missing out. We have tons of great training, including a new detailed master class published each month, and live training webinars with experts twice a month. Plus, you’ll get access to all of our archives where we already have a growing library of master classes and other training videos.
Elite members also get membership in our incredible online mastermind group where many of the top real estate investors from across the country, including many of the hundreds of guests I’ve had on this show in the past are already members. Whether you’re brand new, looking to get started, or a veteran, you simply must join today. I promise, you won’t be disappointed.
To learn more, or join today please visit flipnerd.com/lab. That’s flipnerd.com/lab. See you on the next show.