As a real estate or probate estate investor, you are always on the look for new properties. Sometimes the properties are easier to find than others. There are several ways to keep an eye open for these properties. One such way would be to work with local Realty companies. The downside with working with a Realty company is that by the time it’s listed, the person in charge of the property may have already been contacted. They are also under contract with the listing agent to offer a commission from the sale. However, the benefit for the person listing the property is that it may be difficult for them to deal with the property themselves. They may be in a different state or country.
So how does a property end up in probate? This is simple. When someone that owns property dies, it ends up in probate. In the will, it’s often left to someone, or personal representative to take care of.
What does probate mean? In it’s simplest definition, Probate- A court proceeding by which a Will is proven valid or invalid. The term is generally used to mean all proceedings pertaining to the administration of estates such as the process by which assets are gathered and applied to pay debts, taxes and expenses of administration and distributed to beneficiaries.
In many cases, the personal representative is someone that was close to the deceased, but may live in another state. They are responsible for finalizing everything such as paying all the creditors, etc. They may or may not be interested in the actual property itself.
Court Research is by far the best way to gather the information that you need. However, this requires visiting the courthouse, digging through court records, and finding what you’re looking for. Looking for a good probate lead company is a good alternative. For instance, one company, Jellybean Services, offers this service. Their website is http://www.jellybeanservices.com They have court researchers that will visit the physical courthouse, and pull probate leads for you. According to their website, they don’t resell the probate leads that you purchase from them. They also enter the information onto a spreadsheet and send it to you via e-mail.
When purchasing a good probate lead, you want to find a company that gathers data exclusively. You don’t want data that is being resold half a dozen times. Contacting a personal representative can be a touchy area. You’re contacting a person who recently suffered the loss of a loved one that may have been close to them. If you contact a person from a lead that’s been resold a dozen times, you may find the personal representative may be less than enthusiastic to speak with you. Some companies may offer a subscription for their leads on top of an additional cost for the leads.
You want to do your homework when picking a good probate lead company. Choosing one that has it’s own court researchers as well as the experience that goes along with it. When speaking with a company, try to get to know them a little bit as well as their history. Are they only interested in money, or do they seem sincere in wanting to assist you with your goal? When it comes to picking a good probate lead company, you can’t go wrong by asking too many questions.