Peephole Profits

Q: I’m in a soft market and have quite a large inventory of homes for sale, would you suggest that I try and find a different market or should I try and work with mine?

A: I would definitely recommend staying in your market if you have over 100,000 people in your county. It’s just going to help you pick up property a little cheaper. Just make sure to keep your offers as low as possible right from the start.

Q: I’m having problems finding the probate notices in the newspaper?

A: Try and contact a local Probate Attorney and/or the Probate Court and ask them were they are generally listed for your county. Also, do a Google search for all of the newspapers in your county and start by looking in the classifieds under legal. There are several ways they will be listed, for example: Probate Notice, Estate Notice, Notice to Creditors, Notice to All Persons, Citation by Publication and so forth.

Q: If you are having problems finding the probate notices in the newspapers, is there anyway to bypass this step and get the information directly from the Probate Court?

A: Yes, each courthouse uses a different coding system for their files. If you figure out that system then you would need the file number. For instance, let’s say you requested file # 123456 and #123457, than you can assume that the next one would be # 123458 and so forth. You can than just go in and ask for the files starting were you left off before. Also, in some cases you can just request to see the last 20 cases filed and you don’t even need a file number.

Q: Are the heirs and personal representatives usually very receptive to the letters?

A: In most cases, the heirs and personal representative know that they have to sell the real estate to have the funds in order to settle the estate. When they receive your letters they haven’t even spoken with a realtor yet and you’re the first person on the scene. They are usually as egger as you are to make the deal happen since most likely they are paying the expenses for the property out of their pocket.

Q: Once the personal representative accepts the offer does the court system have to approve it?

A: It depends on your counties law; however there are typically two types of administrations, Independent and Dependent. In an independent administration there does not have to be court approval. In a dependent administration you will need court approval.

Q: What is an overbid process?

A: If it is a dependent administration and the personal representative has approved the offer it is then kicked back to the court and goes before the judge where they then hold and auction at the courthouse hoping to get a higher price.

Q: How do you determine whether it is an Independent or Dependent administration?

A: That will be determined in the will. If the decedent names a personal representative than it will be an Independent administration and if the court names the personal representative than it will be a Dependent administration.

Q: You spoke about Independent and Dependent Administrations, however in Florida the files refer to Summary and Formal Administrations. Which is which?

A: In Florida, a Summary Administration is an “Independent Administration” and a Formal Administration is a “Dependant Administration”.

Q: Should an institutionalized or assisted care spouse be sent copies of the letters that are sent to the PR?

A: No, in this case just sent the letters to the PR.

Q: In Module 3, you say at first to ask general question about the property when the PR contacts you. Then you say the only thing we should do is set an appointment to see th property. Can you clarify?

A: You must ask the general questions in order to get enough information to figure out if you want to pursue the property in the first place. You need to qualify the property before you make an appointment because you don’t want to waste the PR’s time or yours if it’s not a deal.

Q: I have Marko Rubels Profit Grabber system, would it work in congruent to your program?

A: Yes, Profit Grabber works great. In fact, I’m working with Marko Rubel to have a special Profit Grabber adapted for my students.

Q: In my local publication I am seeing several different types of notices relating to probate. Is there a way to tell which notices are likely to be the first printed for an estate? And what are the differences in the notices?

A: The notices that talk about the petition or application are usually the first notice. The differences you’re seeing in the notices are the different attorney’s offices using slightly different lingo. Each law firm does things a little different.

Q: In Module 3 you mention a list of questions to ask the PRs over the phone. Where can I get the list?

A: The questions for the PRs are available in the Training Center under Module 4 listed as the Phone Script.

Q: What does it mean when the petitioner is the “Public Administrator, San Diego County”?

A: It’s neither good nor bad, it’s just one of the quirks California has that most states don’t. Each county has their own little differences and it’s going to be your responsibility to figure out what those differences are for your county and state. Unfortunately, it is impossible for me to know the minute differences for all 3,000 plus counties in the U.S.

Q: Is there any advantage or disadvantage when the Petitioner is an attorney?

A: Sometimes this can be a disadvantage simply because the attorney’s make things harder than they should. However, each attorney is different so here again there is no hard or fast rule.

Q: How soon after the obituary has been published should we look for the probate notice?

A: This depends on how fast the PR opens probate. It could be as little as a few weeks to several months.

Q: You mention that if you buy and sell at wholesale you do not need financing, how does that work?

A: You put the house under contract and assign your contract to another buyer before you have to close on the house. You do not want to put a special clause in the contract that says, “If I can not find another buyer in X days then I’m not obligated to buy.” because that would be a red flag to most sellers. If you follow my buying principles then you should always be able to find another buyer to assign the contract to.

Q: Do you use a standard offer to purchase form?

A: Yes, I always use the same contract realtors use because title companies are use to those contracts.

Q: How do you assign the contract over to the next buyer?

A: All you have to do is provide the title company with an assignment of contract form which is available to download in the Training Center. The title company will handle everything from that point. It’s a simple document as you can see. However, you should have a local attorney review it to make sure it meets the needs of your state. Your title company attorney can probable do this for a small fee.

So the process should go like this, hypothetically:

Step 1: Put the property under contract for $50,000 which is based on a $100,000 house to keep the numbers simple. Based on the formula I gave you your offer is 70% of 100k minus repairs and minus your assignment fee. So, let’s say the house needs 10k in repairs and you want to make 10k. You’d offer 70% of 100k or $70,000 minus 20k which would come out to $50,000. You’d actually start lower

Step 2: Take your signed 50k contract to the title company so they can open title.

Step 3: Send an email to your cash buyers list that you have a 100k house you’ll sell for 60k or best offer.

Step 4: Meet you new 60k buyer at the title company to file the assignment of contract and collect your 10k fee.

Step 5: Deposit your new 10k cashiers check in your bank account with a big smile on your face.

Step 6: Repeat steps 1-5 three times per month and you’ll be making 30k or $360,00 per!

That’s it, it really is that simple!

Q: Do you have to go to the closing if you have reassigned the contract?

A: No, once you assign your contract and receive your assignment fee your are out of the deal. Always collect your assignment fee up front at the time you file the assignment of contract form with your title company.

Q: What does it mean when you reassign the contract?

A: Its when you put the property under contract and you turn around and reassign the contract to another investor. Then their attorney will print up an Assignment Agreement stating that you are assigning your interest and the contract over to the other investor. You sign the agreement the other investor signs the agreement and you walk away with a check. So an assignment is simply just an addendum to the contract, so to speak.

Q: I am a realtor and was wondering if I should disclose this in the letters to the PR or if I should just let them know after they have contacted me?

A: You could do it a couple of different ways. You could just add a paragraph to the letters that I provided you stating that you are also a realtor and would be interested in listing the house for them if they would like to get full price. Or you could send them two letters, one from you as an investor and another from you as a realtor and see which gets a better response.

Ultimately, you’re just going to have to test and see which way works best for you. I’d probably start by adding the paragraph to the existing letters. If your main goal is to get listings, you could just send them a letter as a realtor and start from that angle, because other realtors are not pursing listings on this level. 

Q: In my county you cannot search by name from the Assessors office to find property, you can only search by address. However if I call the Assessors office and give them the name they can give me the address unless there is someone else listed on the title, then I would have to have their name as well.

A: You are going to have to ask your Assessors office why they do this, because this information is all a matter of public record.

Q: What if the deceased held properties in another county or in a LLC?

A: That’s where or comes in that I refer to in the course.

Q: How far back would you initially pull files from at the clerk’s office?

A: I would go back about 9 to 10 months because you’re going to find in some cases it can take that long for the PR and heirs to come to an agreement about the estate.
Q: My Tax Assessors website is really screwed up at the moment and I can’t get any information online. Would it be ok for me to use the MLS to find out if they had real property?

A: Absolutely, if you have access to the MLS then use it. Two other really good resource to use is and

Q: Do you flip most of the properties that you purchase or do you also hold on to some for rentals?

A: I do a mixture of both, but I’m a long term buy and hold kind of guy. I definitely want to have and do have a portfolio of good rental properties, because we all know that the really big money to be made is on the backend when you can get some properties free and clear, and you have the rental income coming in every month.

Q: If I purchase a property and want to turn around and sell it, will I need a realtor to do so?

A: Not unless you want to use one to help you sell it quickly by listing it in the MLS.

Q: In your experience, do most of the properties require rehab?

A: What you will find a lot of the time are houses that are a little dated. They will probable need to be freshened up a little, but most of them won’t need extensive rehabs.

Q: In the letter campaign you only have four letters; does that mean that after the fourth letter you stop sending them for that specific estate?

A: I follow up with it until I know that something has been done with the property in question. I will track it until I know that the property is no longer on the market.

Q: How do you continue the follow up after the forth letter has been sent out?

A: At that point, instead of sending letters, I would keep following up with them by phone.

Q: As a new investor, would you suggest that I start off by wholesaling the properties that I purchase?

A: I think that is a great idea, because wholesaling in most cases is easier especially when you’re just getting started.

Q: Do you recommend hiring someone to do the research on the properties since it is so time consuming?

A: Absolutely, if you have the resources to train other people to do the research than I would highly recommend it. Obviously, if you’re just starting out that may not be realistic for you, but I would say that you want to get someone to take that off your plate as soon as possible.

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