Putting up a For Sale Sign - Posted by Fran CA

Posted by Bill Gatten on July 24, 2001 at 15:19:09:


In my workshops, when I suggest doing that (putting a for Sale Sign on abandoned property), it’s more for the ringing laughter I get from the audience when I say it (I say something like: “…and a selenium crystal clock couldn’t measure the time span before someone rats on you and the owners calls”). I actually did it once years ago, but it was an accident…I made my deal with a divorced lady and put the sign on the window while I was there, and after the sign went up (while I was doing my due diligence) the ex-husband called and said she had no right to sell his mother’s house (the sign was already removed and in pieces in the trash can by the time I got there).

However, who’s to say it won’t work for you. Though you might also try checking the tax records for forwarding address; sending a registered letter to their last known address with a request for a return receipt and proof of delivery. You might also check with neighbors who might know of relatives who might know where they are. School records are good too if they had children. They won’t give you an address usually, but they may mail a letter for you (and the same is true of recalcitrant neighbors or relatives who may think you’re a bill collector or a process server). Neighbors may also known where they worked, and their former employer may give you the address or phone number, or mail a letter for you.

As far as someone calling on your sign, you can just tell them the property is no longer available, or not available yet, but when circumstances change you will call them.

Good luck.

Bill Gatten

Putting up a For Sale Sign - Posted by Fran CA

Posted by Fran CA on July 24, 2001 at 11:28:32:

I found a duplex that has some fire damage that I was thinking about trying to locate the owners. I started with the title company to look at the tax records and find that the owners are out of state and the taxes on the property are in default. So I do a search to see if they own any other property in the area and two SFH come up with the taxes in default as well. (I do this to see if there is another address for them as well.)

I thought about putting up a For Sale sign in front of the duplex to see if the owners might call, but what happens if someone calls and they want to buy the place before I have it under contract? Just my fear monster stopping me from doing something creative.

Thank you,