Home Buying & Selling 5 Ways to Find the Owner of a Seemingly Vacant Property

5 Ways to Find the Owner of a Seemingly Vacant Property

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When you are in real estate for more than 6 months, you get a superpower. There are no fanfares, announcements or emails from the local superhero association. You may not notice it at first. It’s not X-ray vision, time travel or super-powerful. Finding an abandoned house just by driving a car is a seemingly boring ability.

Not the last house on the left, a dark vacant haunted house, or a house that collapsed from the end It’s a wonderful life.. It’s a subtle clue to tell your brain that “this house is empty and no one has lived there for a while.”

A good example of this is when a neighbor moved in when I was away from home last week. As soon as I drove to my house, I found that their house was empty. Their personal belongings were removed from the pouch and the planters were empty. It felt different from other houses in the neighborhood. They are gone. They were moving early that day.

The signs range from the ones I mentioned above to the more obvious ones. A grassy garden, piles of mail and newspapers, blinds open and no furniture or decoration, or everything closed without lights.

But what matters is not finding an abandoned property, but what you are doing now as an investor. How can you find the owners of an abandoned home and help them by buying a home that is now vacant and forgotten?

I have 5 strategies you can use to find their owners.

1. Tax record

Has anyone wanted to record the addresses of owners of all properties in your area in one central location or website? If so, I have some great news for you! One of the easiest ways to find out the owner of a property is to look for a tax record or property record on a city or county website.

This is available online in most counties, but in some local counties you may need to visit this data directly. A quick search for a property’s address will show the owner’s name and tell you if the owner’s address is different from the property’s address.

Keep in mind that some counties are difficult to find this information or are not available to the general public, but the extra work is worth the reward. Also, this information may be out of date or not updated at all. If the owner did not notify the county of the new address, we are processing old or bad data.

2. Skip the trace

What does the dollar buy for you these days? Gas station coffee? One-third of energy drinks? Gum pack?

It seems that there is not much. What if you say you can buy a terrifying amount of data about people?

With skip tracing, you can pay for services to get information about people, depending on the service and the amount of information you need. It usually costs around $ 1 to $ 5. Some of the big skip tracing services are actually run by credit bureaus.

The skip trace report includes the absentee landlord’s latest address, phone number (seriously, some have more than 20 phone numbers in their name), email address, relatives’ names, and possibly their relatives. Contact information is displayed. If you want a surefire way to find someone’s up-to-date information to contact them, this is it.

Related: 3 Reasons to Always Buy Distressed Property (& How to Find One)

3. Door-to-door sales

This method may seem too old, but it is very effective. In many cases, the owner of an abandoned house had some relationship with his neighbor before he left forever.

I knocked on the door and said, “Jim came to live with his sister in South Dakota and was asked to monitor the place” or “Ginny came to live in the senior living care center across the street.” The town, and the children, don’t know what to do with the place. “

These are dozens of direct examples that I have experienced over the years. Neighbors know about their neighborhood and most want to help and protect the area. Some people are tired of seeing the 6-foot-high weeds next door. Some people do not want the value of their homes to be affected by the devastation of the streets.

The goal is to find a neighbor who is in contact with the owner. In the above two encounters, I was able to find out the phone number and name of the owner or his children. If you really come to help and are genuine, your neighbor still wants to help your neighbor, even if your neighbor’s house is half collapsed.

People searching real estate lists on their laptops

4. Internet survey

Once you have the name of the owner of the abandoned property, you can connect it to your favorite search engine to see what you can find. I usually enter the city and state after the full name to get more relevant search results.

I found Facebook accounts, Instagram, white pages, company websites, LinkedIn profiles, local newspaper mentions, 4-H Club conference awards, online reviews they wrote, and sometimes obituaries of the owners. rice field. Also, nothing was found for a particular seller. These are usually old sellers who never go online and have no social media presence.

Once you have a few leads, look at everything you find to move on to the next step. Send a message on social media, find a sibling and send a message, and so on. Don’t be afraid to look for available information. Contact the seller to help them with their abandoned property. The harder they are to find, the less competition you have.

Related: 6 Ways to Find Bad Properties Online

5. Physical notes

Not all abandoned properties have been forgotten, as I have found many times with a note on the door. Either a neighbor or a family member who still lives in town and is checking in the property will find it.

Their curiosity is stimulated and they are calling me because I like to keep notes a little open. “Bob, I need to talk to you urgently! Call me as soon as you receive this. 555-555-5555.” Then go back a week later to see if there are still notes left. increase. If it’s not there yet, someone received the message.

Keep another note, whether it’s there or not. This time, it’s usually a 1ft x 2ft red poster board, so it’s easy to see from the street. Sometimes a curious neighbor calls. From time to time, the owner, relatives, or lawyer will call you. In any case, you get a reaction and get one step closer to your goal of buying real estate.

Therefore, your superpower has helped you find abandoned property, and these five methods will help you get the owner’s contact information. What you do with that information from there depends entirely on you and your targeted marketing strategy.

I led you to the water. Now it’s time to drink, take action, and go to help some people.

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Have you ever looked for an unoccupied house owner? how was it?

Tell us about your experience in the comments.

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