We see many companies popping up, we see high volume skip trace firms, we see repossession companies that advertise skip trace as well. In fact we see it so often it makes it seem as though anyone can do it and it’s as easy as that. Just decide on adding a skip trace division and open up. The big question lies in will a bank or finance company actually hire these types of companies?
They probably do every now and then and also these so called skip tracing companies can probably also find many of the cases that may or may not be worth it to the bank. It may be worth it in the sense that they only charged a small skip trace fee of somewhere in the neighborhood of $300.00 so the finance company is happy. The question remains though is the finance company happy tying up cases with these so called skip tracers where only about 70% or less gets found. At that point does it stay worth it for them, I think not. I also think there is a big difference in what exactly they are skip tracing to begin with. For example if it is a subprime finance company that only has cars with balances due of 12,000.00 and real value is around 5,000.00 is it still worth it to pay $1,000.00 or more per unit to a company that will really work each case and stay in the 98% recovery rate percentile. I believe after its said and done after each year, to pay a real skip trace company as opposed to some company that just threw up an ad that they skip trace.
How do you know which company is a good skip trace company?
In order to really know if a skip trace company is good or not, there are several ways to tell prior to starting with them.
- They should have recommendation letters from other finance companies they work with
- They usually specialize and are known in the industry for Skip Trace
- They utilize creativity and outside the box techniques in order to locate tough to locate assets
- They are detail oriented and follow up with detailed reports as often as you like
- They equally work identity theft and fraud cases and never turn down a case due to difficulty
- They do more than run comps from skip trace software programs
- They always work on contingency basis
Just to reiterate some of the qualities listed above, we understand that not all companies will have recommendation letters as we all start somewhere, however usually that person will come out from an excellent trained scenario that will be listed in his bio that the finance company will be familiar with. However, if have done previous work for a finance company and did a great job, we find that the finance companies offer letters of recommendation as par for the course. We have over 8 letters of recommendation from some of the top banks and finance companies in the nation and half of those just came by mail or fax. These are not just letters of recommendation, these are letters specifying the kind of skip work you have completed that no one else could, the millions of dollars you were able to gain year after year in lost assets for your clients, the level of professionalism you gave them among other excellent things listed. These are your ticket to a future in the skip trace industry.
While the greatest skip tracing firms can find anything, they usually do specialize in a particular area as there are so many areas in skip work today. If a skip trace company is not creative, there is no way that company is any good. It takes super and specialized creativity to be the best in this business and once becoming the best, finance companies will give referrals to their industry banker friends.
As far as being detail oriented, the way I look at it is a few things, first off a good skip trace company will always detail from A to Z. It’s like people that are clean, typically feel better about themselves and are more organized. A chef that keeps his place clean is typically a better chef than the guy that throws garbage all over his station. The same principles, on tough skip tracing there is no short cuts, hence detail oriented.
What makes a skip trace company just average?
They have little to no background in the industry, they utilize the same or similar software that most finance company skip tracing departments already use, in fact many would send comps along with the skip order. These companies are sometimes forwarding companies counting on hungry repossession firms to help locate the asset. or they just run the typical comp with last known, last jobs, last phone, whatever the case may be, they are too busy to have a decent 95% to 98% percentile and normally fall below 75%.
They usually charge a no find fee. The way I see it is if your great, not average put your money where your mouth is and do it on contingency, with the exception that the asset got paid for in the meantime.
We are available for certain skip trace consulting work. We assist a few bank fraud departments with skip trace consulting, if you would like to set up a consultation please use the contact form on this page and we will get back with you.