Working in Repossession there are several other professions that you will here about daily or even work with daily. Personally I always preferred skip tracing in fact, not only did I prefer skip tracing but I preferred the most difficult skip tracing available and the banks that work with me know it. As a skip tracing company even more so than a repossession company you here of the different skip trace companies out there or the fees that they charge, or the type of work that they do. Immediately you realize that the types of skip trace work out there varies tremendously and so do the fees. If the phrase “you get what you pay for” ever came to mind this is it for sure.
The many types of skip tracing
To start with the different types of skip tracing begins with collateral types, each type of collateral demands a different price all together and usually a different strategy to be worked. In this business you have the typical car repo forwarding companies that employ a large skip tracing staff where most of them are on hourly and could care less about getting into a deep think mode or actually doing what is needed to get the job done. Even though their work sucked, I would like to say thank you to these companies for a couple of reasons. First off for having low pricing for skip tracing, so low that it is unrealistic for a bank to even think that this is a real skip tracing business. Can a bank really think that a skip trace that may take a solid 1 or 2 weeks to find cost $300.00 and under? Believe it or not as I discuss further below some banks do realistically think this but end up paying in the long run. Second reason is the fact that they had so many unsolved cases, they came to us.
Some of the types of skip tracing that get assigned
- Tractor trailers
- Heavy Equipment
- Office equipment
- Service (people that need to be served)
- Rent a Cars
And much more but you get the picture of how the different levels can have an effect on the billing for this type of work. You also have different levels on each of these items themselves. Just cars alone you have near charge off, straw purchase, purposely hiding, out of state, border crossing, Nigerian shipping, fraudulent purchasing, or just simple change of boyfriend or change of roommates apartments.
Cookie cutter skip trace companies
How does some of these larger companies stay in business at such ridiculous prices? They basically have a system where they will work on a car for a day or two. They will assign a worker to the case, that worker will run a basic comp, gather phone numbers from the comp and the original info from the banks order, they will spend the entire day on that and a few other assignments in an effort to gain enough info to find a positive location. This will work with fresh cases from the banks and finance companies, however the minute they run into a scenario above the case comes to a full stop and the worker moves on down the line. The reasons these larger cookie cutter skip firms stay in business is simply because the amount of easier skips from the banks exceeds the amount of tougher cases, they even if they end up with 70% it will save the bank some money.
High end skip tracing
This kind of work usually commands minimum $1,000 up to the 6 figures for some worldwide cases. I remember getting a call from one of the larger banks repossession department after them calling one of our banks asking for a referral. I told her the basic pricing started at $1,000 and she began to tell me that so and so did it for $400 each and she began to try to negotiate where I simply wasn’t negotiable. I explained that we have a near if not a 100% locate rate and sometimes some of these cases can take upwards of a couple weeks or even a month or so as noted in the voodoo trail assignment here. I further explained that we actually work these cases and have a certain passion in maintaining our extreme success rate, that few others would dedicate the amount of work into these cases. This department had no intentions of leaving there cookie cutter skip trace firm and all she ended up sending were the cases after they had been worked, sometimes only weeks before charge off which is added pressure.
As a skip tracer it is important to be very clear with your clients that you have no intentions of doing skip traces for $300.00 and below that you see so much of today. At that rate it’s impossible to have any kind of success unless every case is simply running a comp and using the last known. The bank has already done this before it even makes it to a skip account.