Unless you’re within an hour or two away from your market, you’re probably asking yourself how you can continue investing in real estate and do everything it entails while being in the comfort and safety of your home. In this episode, Scott Carson talks about the different ways that you can find, identify, and hire vendors and a virtual team of experts for your note business. He discusses upfront due diligence, finding realtors, real estate attorneys, title and escrow companies, collateral review and storage, forced place insurance companies, property preservation, property management, contractors, and hiring virtual assistants to accomplish this all for you. Once you get the hang of this virtual systems thing, you may not want to get back fully to the way things used to be once this pandemic lifts. Listen and learn how you can take part in the new normal of note investing!
Listen to the podcast here:
How To Find Vendors And Create A Virtual Note Team
I’m glad to have you all here with us. Hopefully, you all are safe, healthy and happy, even with all the pandemic and Corona and the 6 feet apart and everything like that. I have many friends that were cracking up there, sending me photos from the beach or some of them flew out of country to go somewhere where they’d be a little bit more fun. I thought it would be interesting because I had many people who were like, “Scott, how do I do this virtually? How do I take my note business and real estate business and do it virtually with vendors? How do I get people to help me out? How do I find realtors, companies? I need some help with this.” This is all about helping you create the virtual teams so you can sit from the sand and make a few phone calls or an email and do it remotely from wherever you’re at.
Before we dive into the content, as always everybody, welcome. If you miss the replays, you can always go to WeCloseNotes.tv to download the episodes. You can also listen to it on the podcast as well. Please make sure you subscribe. We’re trying to hit 4,000 subscribers on our YouTube Channel. We’d love for you to take part of that. Not only will you get all the replays but you’ll also get access to most of the replays from our Note Closers Show Podcast and some other things out there. We’ve done a lot more than 65 episodes and they are available for you to download and listen as well. Go to www.WeCloseNotes.com and watch the podcast there. Leave a review. If you’re on iTunes, Stitcher or whatever, leave a review. I’m excited to have you here.
Let’s get into the nuts and bolts. It’s all about your questions. I have gotten plenty of questions. People are like, “Scott, how are you creating a virtual team?” I know this is not a webinar about virtual assistance. We’ll talk a little about virtual systems, but this is not about VAs. It is how do you find the right people to get this shit done, when you’re not there in that local market, when you’re not an hour away? One of the biggest things too is I see many real estate investors, and I’m not just talking about note investors. I’m talking about the fix and flip, the note investors who are trying to do it all themselves. You’re trying to save dollars and a penny, but you’re stepping over dollars to save a nickel.
That’s an effective place to be at when it comes to being a true real estate investor entrepreneur is you want to be able to do this business from your phone or wherever you’re at, whether you’re on a lockdown or on vacation. Some of the things that we’ll go through are that if you’re brand new and don’t know, we’re going to talk about where you find these resources too. I’m not going to get into each specific one. We’ll talk about how you find any referral sources and stuff like that for you here.
Out of market teams, we all have them. If you’re in the note business, for the most part, you’re definitely going to be buying stuff out of your market, depending on where you’re located, unless you’re in the big ten or the Rust Belt State or Florida. Most of you guys that are in our database, New York, California, Texas are buying the stuff in other states. I always love the fact that I’m about a 2.5-hour flight from 90% of the country. I can jump on Southwest Airlines, fly East, flying to Orlando in two hours, roughly. I can fly Western to San Diego in about 2.5 hours.
I’m flying to Chicago roughly about 2.5 to 3 hours too, four hours to Seattle, and 4 to 5 to New York if I need to, provided that I don’t have a layover. Out of market teams are something that we’re all going to deal with. It falls into 7 or 8 different categories. Due diligence is an important thing. There’s the pre-bid, there’s the online versus the actual due diligence. We’ll get to that. We’ll be finding realtors to help you out with some of that stuff, helping you to list your property, help you review them. Real estate attorneys are helping you foreclose if you need to. Company new documents, collateral review.
This is an important one to look at your collateral before closing. Can you do this virtually? You have to do it in person. What’s going on? Title land scrub. If you’re going to close on a piece of property, are you going to pull title reports or O&Es? You need to know ways to do that. No, you don’t have to go to your local title company down the street. Insurance is an important thing, especially out of market. Most of you can’t go to your local state farm or a farmer’s guy because they’re only licensed to do business in the local state. How do you find people out of state? Property managers is a huge thing if you’re going to end up taking property back.
Upfront Due Diligence
Servicing throws that in there and I am at the third service going as well, but I’m talking more of those that take the property back and try to turn it into, “I want to keep rentals.” You also have a variety of vendors in real estate. We’re not talking your title company. We’re not talking realtors. We’re talking vendors, a whole variety, a Rolodex of vendors that you’re going to need in the real estate field. You’re not going to be doing it all, especially if you’re using your own IRA funds to fund deals. You need to have third-party vendors doing the work for you. We’ll also get into contractors besides the different vendors out there. I’m going to take some notes here as we dive into this. Let’s dive into the due diligence front.
Upfront due diligence. You can do this all yourself by jumping online and doing a search for address. I’ve got hours and hours of me showing people how to do due diligence online on the upfront side. When you get a spreadsheet, you should not do that. I would highly recommend you go to www.NoteProz.com. They do a great job. JD Bates and his team have done a great job of upfront due diligence. This is online valuations. You can do more than 100 assets at a time. I find that it works better if I try to keep it at 100 or less. When I’m running any given time, I’m going to run five searches, roughly about 100 at a time. If I drop off 500 or anything, that’s going to freeze it up a little bit as it’s scrubbing information off Zillow. The county records are going to give you an automated valuation model looking at what’s it roughly worth, high or low. What did it sell for? What are the market rents? What does the crime map look like?
What’s great is it also gives the details, square footage, lot size, bed and bath if that’s available, recent sold, what it sold for, high and low end. It also gives you the link to www.Realtor.com for realtors in that zip code, which comes in the next part. That’s not a bad thing. This will save you time. There are services out there that would charge you $3 to $7 an asset to do a lot of the upfront due diligence and that gets expensive. Once I saw Note Proz came out, I’ve been one of the biggest fans. I’ve been the biggest referral source for them as well. You can use Note Proz besides notes too. They’re not going to pull P&I information. They’re not going to pull what the borrower looks like. This is a great service if you’re using for REOs or rentals. You can drop into any type of piece of property in there in a rock and roll. It has a $1 trial period for three days. You get signed up for it. You need to pay $27 or $49 a month afterwards, it depends what you’re doing. It’s also got some great features on an asset manager scrubbing and other things, CRM that is built into it as well.
Honestly, for most of you, the $27 a month is what you need to be at. He’s done a great job. He’s always constantly editing. He’s got a new version coming out. www.NoteProz.com, this is going to be your best source for due diligence, copy-pasting into a spreadsheet and then run your numbers and going from there. This is one thing you can outsource. You can also outsource this to VAs to pull that information too, but I would rather you copy-paste this and then spend some time looking at this stuff, especially your first few assets. Take a look at what the online due diligence pulls. If it’s a small county, you may not pull the information. You’ve got to do the work and work it yourself. If you get too small, it may not be worth your time to chase after it. You have to know where you want to go. Performing nonperforming you’ve got to have that stuff down on what your business model is going to be for, first and foremost. That’s the most important thing I can tell you.
If you’re never going to pull the trigger and show up, that’s fine. You don’t need this, but if you are going to show up on a regular basis and start making offers, this is a great way to help you streamline that stuff. He does a great job scrubbing that information off other places. This does not mean final due diligence, but this is upfront due diligence pulling some online valuations on the front. Any questions about Note Proz? It’s a great service and very affordable. Everybody can afford $27 a month if they’re going to be in this note business. Get in there, spend some time with it, and start using it. It’s easy. All you’re doing is copy-pasting over the street address the city and state into it. It runs into the rest of the numbers and goes from there.
Finding realtors. We talked about Note Proz. We’ll give you a link to www.Realtor.com for that zip code. That’s not always the easiest way to find realtors. This is the number one question I get, “How do you find a realtor?” I get this every class, whether it’s a note weekend, a virtual workshop, Note Camp, Blueprint. The best number one source for finding good realtors is referrals, other note investors, other real estate investors, referrals in a Facebook group. You can also use our buddy, Dickie Baldwin, from Baldwin Advisory Group. He does a great job with a list of realtors that are investor-friendly. It’s not all-encompassing of the country. He still adding realtors that come and go. It’s been a great resource for us. www.BaldwinAdvisoryGroup.com. Dickie Baldwin does a great job with it up there.
I’m a big believer that you need to pay realtors to pull information, especially for pulling comps. You’re going to pull the numbers. You wanted to do dry buys. You have to pay for their time most of the time. You have to keep that in mind. If Dickie doesn’t have a realtor for you, you can go to www.Realtor.com by typing in the zip code. www.Realtor.com will give you a breakdown on the realtor on how many listings they have that are being sold at their price point. If you’ve got a $50,000 listing or property, you’re not going to pick a realtor that have done $1 million listings. They’re not going to waste their time. He gives you a great fit and feel for what they have and their experience. Not just the number of years, the number of deals as well.
I like to look at the soul’s range, high and lows, what their lows has been and what their high has been if they’re hungry. You can also go to NAR, www.NationalAssociationRealtor.com to look for realtors as well. If you know a licensed agent and you’re having a hard time pulling comps on the front end, NAR use www.NARRPR.com if you’ve got a local agent. They can help you out. I’m still a big believer that you need to have a local realtor, especially drive by the property, before you have fund and when you get a contract. If you can’t find a realtor or somebody to look at it beforehand, I’ll look at www.NARRPR.com. If I have to, I’ll pay for a BPO through Baldwin Advisory Group and his vendors before I fund, but you always want to have eyes in anything.
If you can do that the best way online, it’s one of those sources. You’ve maybe heard me talk about www.ActiveRain.com. It’s a free resource. They used to be a lot more active, but it’s a great place to find realtors, brokers, local insurance agents and stuff like that. It’s free membership. I would rather though probably go to a meetup group, a local real estate investment club. You need to go through the meetup groups online or go to the real estate club. It has a website and most of the members will have a message board or discussion board that you can jump onto and ask, “Who do you have? Who’s a great realtor? Who’s an investor-friendly realtor who can help me out with pulling some comps or being in this neck of the woods? I need somebody to drive by or can be my REO agent or help me out with some things.”
Referrals are always going to be the number one source. I would go to Baldwin second, www.Realtor.com is third, and meetup is fourth. From there, what do you say to them? You simply say, “I’m looking for somebody, especially on the front end, and they can drive by a property, take some photos, pull some comps for me. My REO agents would be foreclosing and be my listing agent.” Some agents, if you are tight on the budget and you can’t pay an agent to drive by then next, you can always find a local nearby realtor office. I will call that off and say, “Do you know somebody who’s hungry and who’s got some time to take some photos for me? You helped me out?” Maybe get them to pay at least $50. Throw a bone for the gas and time.
Any questions about finding realtors? The question people ask me a lot is, “What are you going to say?” Get on the phone. Talk to them. If they say no, move on to the next one. Here’s a big thing about finding realtors. A realtor tells you they’ll have numbers to you in 48 hours. I send a text message reminder in 48, but if they fall off and I don’t have it in 72, then I find somebody else. That’s excluding a holiday weekend, the 4th of July and Saturday. Most people take it on Friday and they’re spending time with their families. They’re not going to go back to work until later. You’ve got to give him some time. If you call on a Sunday night, don’t expect them to send you comps on the first thing Monday morning. There are people like you. Treat them with respect, but your realtors can be the linchpin to help you with a lot of your vendors that we’ll be talking about later on for you.
Real Estate Attorneys
Real estate attorneys. After your servicing company, they’re probably the most important vendor you need to have. Realtors are always going to be a big thing on the front end or the backend and real estate attorneys can make or break you. Referrals, word of mouth. Realtor, other investors, that’s where we’ve gotten a lot of our great real estate attorney referrals is coming from other note investors. Your servicing company will have them that they use, but you may want to use other people. If you’re looking for somebody, maybe you don’t know anybody or you want to referral, you want to go to www.LegalLeague100.com. It’s a pretty cool website. You can get list down by state and there are attorneys and companies, offices that will pay to be part of this. They will list where are they located and what their specialty is. Foreclosure, loss mitigation, REO, civil, bankruptcy, whatever it might be. That’s another big thing. You will need your servicing company, your attorney to help you out with that as well too. Legal League 100 is one of my favorite websites once I go after referrals from my servicing company or other fellow investors.
We’ve talked about servicing companies. The thing about servicing companies is I don’t like to use their attorneys a long time because they want the conversation to go through them, which is okay if you’re in a pinch. That’s great if you don’t have the time. Usually, you realize you’re going to have to go through the servicing company for getting information. I like having a direct relationship so I can have contacts. I’ll give an example. I get phone calls all the time from people, “Do you know a good real estate attorney in Texas?” I’m like, “Yes, I know this guy, Steve Best. He’s the best.” How did I get a hold of him? I was networking in my local real estate investor clubs. That’s another thing. Go to meetup groups, REO clubs, post haste. He knows a great real estate attorney. You’re going to put up an escrow account or you’re going to handle foreclosure documents and stuff like that.
Collateral Review And Storage
I wouldn’t use these guy’s attorneys to do your paperwork. Initially, outside of a fund, you can often find that stuff a lot cheaper, but these will be your litigation men in case you need to sue somebody or go that route. Collateral review and storage is a big thing when it comes to doing due diligence. You’re going to review collateral. It means the loan files. You want to make sure everything’s in that loan file. On the frontend side, you’re not going to have the hard actual files. You’re going to have scanned copies. That’s called a soft copy, but you need people. Only because I’ve bought in bulk before, I’ve got a local part-time title rep who’s retired and she’ll come in and take a look at the collateral files once we have the files or she’ll look at them beforehand.
She’s good about getting back to me. She’s also been a loan processor in the past so she knows what goes into a loan file if there are a lot of docs in there. It’s a great thing to have. I pay her an hourly. My buddy Joel Markovitz does a good job as well. Here’s the thing. A lot of your collateral review in storage companies are going to charge it per file. Everybody’s going to tell you, “You need to protect that loan and the collateral file by putting in either safe or having a third party hold onto it.” It’s still expensive if you’re paying $40 a file a year or even $10 a file a month. You may want to look at finding a climate-controlled storage facility that you can buy or rent a 5×5 or a 10×10 or 5×10 on a monthly basis because it may be a lot cheaper. You want to make sure it’s up, not on the first floor, wherever it can’t be flooded.
I usually like mine on a higher floor. They’re also in boxes there as well too. They’re safe and secured. Originally, we’ll do a review, store it and they’ll also do curative work. What curated work means is that it’s missing an allonge or it’s missing an assignment of mortgage in there. They can go out there if you need a quick claim deed fixed. They can do that. For our students, we’ve got a dedicated person to help us with curative work and creating a filing and recording and stuff as well too. They record it and stuff so that they know what counties are going there. We’ve used them in the past. They’re going to also review the collateral fronts like what’s missing from their max management. Our friend, Shante Duffy, she does the review.
They will also store your collateral files for you. It’s $40 per year there. Richmond does ala carte fee so don’t ask me to quote prices. I’ll probably butcher to get them wrong. That’s a management thing. Shante will review collateral files if you’re going to have them boarded with Madison. They’ll store them as well. They’re not going to store anything. They’re not going to a board or having servicing. It’s $150 a file. Our buddy, Joel Markovitz, does review. He’s done it for quite a while, but we’ve been more active about getting out. He does collateral view and usually pretty good about turnaround time, 48 to 96 hours, depending on how many files he has on his books.
It’s $150 a file. What I like about Joel is he’s got a great heart. If you’re not going to buy an asset, don’t bother him calling up to set up an appointment. He’s a busy guy like anything else, but if you are going to have him do some review files, I would text him directly say, “Joel, Scott sent me to you.” If you tell him I sent you, he’ll take good care of you. I’m not going to give you Joel’s email out here, because he’s a little bit better and faster in text messages for you. Any questions about collateral review and storage? We could do a whole Monday night webinar on collateral review. We might do that here, breaking down on what to look for to file what not to see in different things as far as due diligence.
If you’ve not looked at collateral files, you should hire a company to look at and tell you what’s missing? What’s good? What’s not? You’ll find out and find a lot of great stuff in collateral file that you won’t see elsewhere. If you’re bored, read the whole collateral file. They’ll put you to sleep. One of the great things, especially when people come into Austin and spend a couple of days with us is we’ll spend time, a couple of hours going through collateral file so you can see it. You can flip through it, can see what you’re looking at, if you can understand it, know what you’re looking at and go from there.
Title And Escrow
Title and escrow companies are important not only on the due diligence side, but also in closing side. You’re closing companies that are selling the property office and REO or all setting up an escrow, you need to have a title and escrow company. Title companies takes care of both of that in Texas. Other parts of country like California, will do separate companies for title escrow. I’m a big believer of referrals. Most of the time, when you have an agent helping you sell a property, they’re going to have their own title escrow company, unless you’ve got somebody local that you like to work with. I put a kibosh on a deal where the title rep was an absolute idiot. I refuse to work with him. I said, “We’ve got to move the title somewhere else.” We went to my attorney. Let me do a different office that I use.
You can also find catalogs where companies all over Active Rain. You can search from your title on Chicago, Alamo, First American, the major ones. You’ll have smaller ones out there as well too. Usually, realtor’s going to refer you to the company they use, who they’re going to pick for the most part. If it’s in a state where I got my own closing agent, or my own attorney. I prefer to go that route first. Especially if it’s going to be like an owner finance deal, note sale, or even an escrow account or it’s set up with a different funding source. You’re going to need to pull title updates or title reports. Title reports on the full thing if you’re selling the asset.
If you’re doing a note sale where you’re reviewing the notes you’re purchasing, you need ownership and a coverage report and O&E report or the previous two owners of that property to check out to see what’s on there. They don’t always show up everything on there, but that’s a great starting point. Tower Report can cost you $250 or more. An O&E report is $85 to $100, $125. There are two primary companies out there. You’ve got ProTitle USA with Alex Goldovsky. You can go straight to the website and order from there. I encourage you guys and gals out there to check out somebody we had on the show. I’ve known her for quite a while, the lady I talked to, and she works at a company called Vantage Point Title. They are providing concierge services and closings on portfolios.
She’s out of Southern California, but they can do it all across the country, which is cool if you starting to sell some notes or buying portfolios. They can be your one-stop shop to collect, especially when you’re doing multiple funding and multiple sales and stuff like that. They are title concierge service. They’re like a white-glove service but check them out. www.VantagePointTitle.com and ask for Michelle Chockrek. Tell them that Scott Carson sent you and they’ll take good care of you. I’m impressed and start to use them for what we’re doing, not only in the pulling side, but also the sales side. I stayed the same person on the same spot to take care of it. They know the business. Whether I’m either out of California now, they’re not doing stuff in California. They’re pulling information from across the country, but I like the fact that the concierge is a cool thing from start to finish on some deals. You can also find title insurance companies by Baldwin Advisory Group. He’s got a few people as well for reports and stuff like that can help you out too. My opinion would be to work with Vantage Point Title with Michelle Chockrek.
Property insurance. This is a big thing. Yes, you’re buying notes. Yes, you need to put insurance on those puppies besides the real estate thing. Most of the time when you’re buying performing or nonperforming notes, you need to make sure that the borrower has insurance. If they don’t, you’re going to put something called force-placed insurance on it. Some people go out to their local state and put a whole different type of insurance on you. They’ll put full collateral or full liability or things like that on the property. You got to be careful because in the vacant property, a lot insurance companies don’t want it insured for this, especially if it’s been in flooded areas. You’ll find a harder time to find the stuff. You can reach out to your local offices or offices in that local state. That can become tedious if you start buying in multiple states. If you’re buying in 1 or 2 states, maybe a local state farm agent that insures everything in your local area. When you start buying stuff outside of your local market, you’re going to need to go find a vendor that’s going to take care of it.
One of the best services out there as Ross Diversified Insurance Ed Babtkis out of Orange County, California. If you Google Ross Diversified Insurance, it’ll pop up there for you. Tell them that I sent you and they’ll take good care of you. Ed and his team will do a great job. They’ll send you a spreadsheet, fill in the information and they’ll give a quote back to you as they search it all out their brokers. That might be a little tedious for some of you, especially if you are getting a larger portfolio. It’s hard to make a phone call and have them remove it, take it away. You may need something a little bit more automated. That’s where you’ve got the National Real Estate Insurance Group, NREIG www.NREIG.com. They’ve got an online portal. You can add and subtract relatively easily.
I still like to get somebody on the phone and check out bidding, check out the two different prices. It depends. I want you to have a property manager within 120 miles, and a property manager could be a realtor. It could be a real estate attorney. They need somebody with 120 miles of the property. www.RealEstateInsuranceGroup.com makes it pretty easy to add and subtract. Ed does a great job at adding and subtracting too. You make sure series of phone call, follow-up and stuff like that too for it. You’re not going to get your local guy here to put insurance on something like that. They’re like, “I can’t do force place insurance.” That’s right because they’re not the right type of agents. Most of the time you need to use Ross or National Real Estate Insurance Group and a few others out there, but these are the two predominantly you’ll see, talk about, or you’re seeing them out at different events on a regular basis.
There’s a third group out there that approached me a couple of times and every time I tried to reach out to them to market or get a quote or something like that, I never get a response back, so I’m not going to refer them. If they’re going to treat that to me, they sure are not going to take care of my students well. Both of these companies do a good job and I’ve used them both in the past or currently. I can’t complain on either one of them. Your vendors are going to have a better relationship with you the more active you are. If you’re trying to call and get one note or one property insured, that’s great. You got to keep in mind with what’s going on too. Some of them were not in the office or they’re working from home and they get a little slower timeframe, especially you’re buying a portfolio.
We talked about subtracting. If you find out that one of your borrowers on a note deal has insurance, they provide that to the servicing company or they send it to you, then you can call and get the forced place for both. No, you can’t go out and charge them 3 to 5 times what the normal property-casualty insurance would cost. That was outlawed did years ago. You got to be a pastor who feeds them. One thing that we have done is we’ve set up insurance in our entities, especially on a contract for deed we’ll have the borrower pay the premium. They might be able to get insurance on us. We’ll go ahead and collect it if they’ll pay the premium and it’ll be in our name anyway.
Property manager. This is a big thing when you start taking property back as rentals or several portfolios, looking for deals outside of your backyard where you can go handle it. I’m a big believer you don’t need to be collecting a rent. You don’t need to be managing your property. That is a dead business. I’ve got some friends that do a great job with it. God bless their souls. They’re great at it, but my time is more valuable. I want to be sitting on the beach next to my money, enjoying the sand and getting a sweat there versus sweating and having to go unclog a toilet or fixing a property. It’s not what I want. Number one, for property management company, regular referral.
My next favorite level is going to meet up and REI club to find people, “Who’s a good property management company in this area?” Usually they’ll get 2 or 3. Fees are pretty much the same. I’ll tell you this. You’re going to have some holes or things fall through. It is what it is. www.ActiveRain.com is a place to find property managers on there as well for you across the country. I went and pulled a couple of different websites that we have used in searching for a property. Sometimes property managers want to do stuff locally. The more spread out you are or the fewer assets you have in an area with them, the lower on the totem pole you fall.
You got to realize if somebody’s got 60 properties in a zip code and you’ve got one, their issues are going to come first. Property manager will often happen to be a 1 or 2 handymen on sale if you’re the low man totem pole, it may take them getting around to fix it at a slower pace. There’s also besides www.AllPropertyManagement.com, it’s a third-party website. That’ll help you find relationships in an area. There’s also the National Association of Residential Property Managers, www.NARPM.org that you can check out and find people in your area. National Property Management Association, www.NPMA.org is another great website to go to for property managers out there. Here’s the most important thing. If you’re in one area, you can often find a company in a local area to help out.
The biggest thing is this can be a nickel and dime thing and they can cut you out. I always start looking to outsource this or create an in-house team or entity that can handle that. If you’re in other states you may be dealing with a couple of different property managers. You can oftentimes set up an online system, online portal for rent or have your vendors locally and have a virtual assistant help you out with this and keep it in-house. You can set up as a separate entity and start using that to reduce your overhead and costs, but keep it also virtually. You don’t need a big office, but that’s the big thing. Property management can eat you alive if you’re not on top of the ball with it. A lot of times I’ve seen when we’ve outsourced things, property management we didn’t do ourselves, it ate us up. It took away all of the profits because we all as investors are control freaks because we want to knowhow many showings, who you have lined up. That’s the one thing when it comes to evictions and things like that, and having somebody local is a bonus, but you can often have your attorneys handle that aspect of it if you’re a third party. If you were going to start something, you’ve got some properties across the country, this would be an ideal to have your VA come in and help out. That’s what the rest of stuff we talked about. This would be the biggest thing that I would bring in-house immediately.
I’m not talking about servicing. That’s a different story. We have an in-house team for our servicing besides Madison Management. We have a dedicated person who handles that, but property management, as far as dealing with tenants and vendors and all that stuff realtors are important. Last thing you want to do is begin a phone call on a holiday weekend when you’re having fun. Vendors, there’s still a whole Rolodex of vendors. You need this in real estate. We all know this happens. Off the top of our head, you got a variety of vendors to deal with. You’ve got property preservation to go in and clean it up, turn the water off make sure everything’s fine. You got locksmiths to change the locks on vacant properties or strangers come and go. Make ready crews to go in and clean it up. Do a quick cleanup crew, whether it’s an Airbnb or short-term rental. You need somebody to come in and do clean up after you’ve evicted somebody and they left it in pretty decent shape. You can have pest control year in, year out.
Not to mention the HVAC guy didn’t put that in winterization, making sure the property doesn’t freeze. Yard maintenance if you’ve taken the property back. That can be an expensive one as well too. A whole list of vendors out there that we all need on a day in, day out basis. If there’s somebody that could stop me on the phone it’s usually Stefan or I’ve empowered Hazel to do a lot of stuff as well too. Mobile notary is another vendor on there. There’s a whole place out there. My biggest source for finding these vendors is local or referrals. Do you have somebody who can do this there locally? Do you know somebody there that doesn’t work in Baldwin Advisory Group. He’s got a great resource, both a great list of property reservations, different things out there as well too. It’s phenomenal.
They’re my second place besides the referral. You can find vendors on Angie’s List about everywhere. Angie’s List is also now free, I believe. The costs are all paid by the vendors, which is great. Those that are marketing, they want to keep their place on the Angie’s List. There’s another one. I couldn’t remember what it was, but Angie’s is the most prominent third-party place to find a vendor. If you start getting into the big real estate stuff, when you’re looking at starting to take down some back, I would look at Altisource. This is who we use. Altisource does a great job on vendors work out your foreclosure stuff. They usually want you to have a chunk of assets that they’re working through, not just onesie twosies. www.Altisource.com is a great website to spend some time on. Go and take a look at it.
When you’re starting off small, referrals, BAG, Angie’s List. If you start going bigger, then look at www.Altisource.com as well. Contractors, we haven’t talked about these guys or gals. Contractors are going to be the big word of mouth referral, more so than anything else. You can look on Angie’s List to see how people have responded or rated and reviewed them. That’s a good place to start. www.Altisource.com, you can take a look there as well too. www.NextDoor.com it’s how we have found some of our great little vendors and contractors too. That’s the app. We had this happen. Our HVAC stopped working here in the house.
Steph went on www.NextDoor.com. We found a great guy, Brian, who came out at 8:00 at night and was here for an hour and did a great job and was gone an hour later and it was all working fine. Small piece. He didn’t charge a service fee. We were pretty stoked about that. www.NextDoor.com is a great app to use. Realtor referrals are going to be a big one here, especially without a state. If you’ve got a handyman that can come in and solve this and who can do it inexpensive, I don’t want to do big, heavy rehabs all the longer rehabs in Texas and Florida, because I got teams, not in every area there too.
It’s got to be specific cities because I got good realtors that will handle that or even be like my GC a lot of times. Still though, you want to get three bids on everything you haven’t done and I want references. This is the biggest thing I see investors, not only in the traditional state, but the note side and rehab. You go with the cheapest one and the cheapest one will leave your ass for a higher paying job. I always get references. Give me your most three recent jobs you’ve done. You got to call those references, “Tell me about Tony. Tell me about Brian. Tell me about Bill. How did they come in? Do they come in on budget? Do they come in on time? Did they drag? Was it a pain in the ass to get them out there?”
You do this remotely. That’s the biggest pain in the ass to deal with. It’s not fun. This is why I don’t want to do a lot of it. You can jump on meetup groups and find people there, but you got to be careful. It’s still same thing. Get three bids reference. If you won’t get a bid and references, it’s usually a sign. I would rather take references than I would a bid. If I got good references, I don’t want the big to becoming too high, but you can always take a look at it. I would also highly encourage all of you, if you weren’t of John Swiercinsky presentation at Note Camp, he provides a great job. John has rehabbed a ton of properties, not only Chicago, but in Florida now where he’s at. Even the Eye Candy Homes and he’s got a class. He also does this contractor management side of things. I highly encourage it. He’s in an online class.
Online training goes through a lot of the process, but then if you don’t want to do that, he’ll do it all for you. He is going to take a piece of the pie and usually a feed to begin from. Those rehabs outside of your backyard where you can’t be present, hire somebody to do it. Pay the GC or pay somebody who’s an expert. They know how the city works. They work with the city. They do this on a regular basis and it’s going to be professional. Also, the important thing is not to over rehab the property. I see this is a big mistake too. You over-rehab it like you’re going to move into it. You don’t need it.
A lot of times, your contractors, your GCs will know some shortcuts that can save you on your budget and not come in. It also will help you identify a true budget versus what may be a budget. As a note investor, you may not be able to get internal access of a property, especially it’s occupied. If it’s a vacant, you can get somebody over there quickly, put a lockbox on it and then have your contractor come and take a bit and get back to you. We’ve got a few that we love using in different parts of the country. They stay busy for a reason through everything that’s going on.
Here’s the biggest thing. It’s not that hard to delegate this out and have your dedicated assistant do this for you. REVA Global Real Estate VAs Bob Lachance, they gave a great presentation on Note camp. He’s also on Note Night in America. We strongly recommend hiring a VA to help you out with a lot of stuff. REVA has done a great job. I’ve been extremely impressed with their services. I love what they’re doing. They started off at twenty hours a week. It’s like $10.60 an hour. it’d be good. It’s 40 hours a week. It drops it down to $9.16 an hour. It’s well worth it. If you guys can make a list of things that you’re doing, you should have somebody else do, I guarantee you I can help you on that list. If not, anything else, but lead gen. We need to call banks for you.
Calling banks or contacting asset managers on they’ll do that. Due diligence. They’ll help you look at your collateral. They’ll look at your spreadsheets and they’ll be identifying those things and take a look at that. After you spend some time with them, they’ll help you put your bids in. They will call the counties for you and can check the taxes. They could do your property and vendor management by reaching out and getting someone to track down to get the three bids. Tracking down people to do it for them to reach out and even call them if you give them a Google number or something like that. They can also do all that stuff while you’re sitting at home like, “We got a pipe burst. I got to get the lawn mowed in the vacant property.”
They can help find somebody and put them to work for you. If you’re looking to raise capital, they’re scrubbing the different counties, pulling IRA leads for it. We did this whole training session. I gave him the videos and train them how to do it as well. That’s turning out to be valuable. If you need some help with social media marketing, I would talk with them as well because they’ve done a great job, great team that can do that as well for you to systematize it for you. Phone calls and emails you’re taking in phone calls or things like you need to answer your emails or handle your schedule. Maybe you need to hire a full-time assistant while you’re on vacation. I’ve got VA’s again when I travel. The beautiful thing is I was talking to them.
I mentioned them and they say, “We got to an Independency Day special, a $100 off discount off your boarding fee to start off with. We’re going to get things rocking and rolling.” If you’re going to www.REVAGlobal.com and schedule a meeting with them, mentioned the 4th of July special. Mentioned Scott Carson and they should take good care of you. Honestly, with us all being quarantined and stuck at home again, you need to do that. That’s one way to be able to communicate, we’ve gotten VA’s. We’ve got several that we’re getting ready to bring on to help out all that stuff, because we see a lot of opportunity. It’s part of the reason we spent so much time with REVAGlobal on the frontend side of going through this stuff because we know the opportunities that are going to exist out there.
They’re starting to trickle in. Not just trickle in but starting to come in and we can take a look at residential, commercial, our list building delegating a listing, contact these twenty people. Take this information, this list of contacts and reach out to them online and reach out to them via email. I’m stoked about this. I’m a big fan. This is not a sales pitch. You know that if I love of vendor, I want you guys to be able to take advantage of that time. I hope you’re all staying safe. I know that it’s a weird time. It’s craziness out there. We can all agree to with things. In Texas, they’ve extended it. No working from the office and mandatory masks. It’s a crazy time out there. If you go to www.SlideShare.net and look for Scott Carson, you should be able to find my slides from different presentations on SlideShare. That is going to wrap it up for you. Once again, thank you for reading. We’ll see all of you at the top.
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