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Article of the Month for January 2005 Printer friendly version

Foreclosure Tools and Aids

by Ward Hanigan

Must have . . .

  1. A local foreclosure notice service that reports all new defaults and/or pending trustee's sales, plus liens, etc. such as County Records Research.
  2. A quarterly "comp" book of sold properties (i.e. AIRD's publication).
  3. An amortizing calculator (such as the HP 12C or TI's Business Analyst 35). Find it on eBay and save some money.
  4. Basic forms/paperwork for: property analysis, getting postponements, doing evictions, buying/selling property, investor joint venture agreements, etc.
  5. A current countywide map for your area (like the Thomas Bros. Maps).
  6. Professional looking signs, "For Sale" and "For Rent" @ www.banditsigns.com
  7. Professional looking business cards. Get 250 for free @ www.vistaprint.com
  8. An insurance agent/company that will immediately issue an insurance binder for fire, vandalism, and liability just minutes after purchasing the property at the trustee's sale.
  9. An attorney who specializes in quick, low-cost unlawful detainer actions (or do it yourself, using a current edition of The Eviction Book For California by Leigh Robinson).

Should have . . .

  1. A localized property information system, in CD-ROM format (i.e. Dataquick, or Metroscan) with all the maps and indexes. A year old system is OK and lots cheaper.
  2. A pair of binoculars to look at roof tops and/or distant buildings.
  3. A cell phone for instant access while you're out in the field.
  4. InnoVest's California's Foreclosure Laws
  5. A digital camera to document the inside and outside condition of your newly acquired foreclosure early on. Keeps your insurance company from claiming that any subsequent damage was a pre-existing condition and thus not covered by your insurance policy.

Nice to have . . .

  1. A car GPS navigation device that will directly route you to any foreclosure address and its related comparables in your state's area.
  2. A changeable combination key safe to facilitate showing, inspecting and repairing vacant property. The Supra Key Safe is sold by Home Depot and Lowes.
  3. A plain paper copier.
  4. A facsimile machine for instant transmission of documents to you from a title company's customer service department.
  5. A personal computer setup that allows you to analyze and track foreclosures, junior bene buyouts, judgment liens, etc. and at the same time efficiently handles all of your internal organizational and transaction accounting needs.

Information provided by this website is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. Please consult your investment advisor and/or attorney before entering into any transaction. Read our privacy policy.

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