I finally made an attempt to contact a seller! It was a cold call to a seller that has a 4-plex that I have been watching for over a year now but I didn't know how to go about approaching the seller because I didn't know if I should, since it wasn't on the market, until I listened to some BP podcasts a few weeks ago & the 2 people that were interviewed said that they contact sellers even if the property isn't for sale if they like the property. That was my "go ahead & do it" inspiration.
I did my research first by checking the address on the local property valuation website for the owner's information, square footage, etc. & then I look at the Sheriff's Tax website to see if their taxes are paid current. I was surprised to see that the owner still owes taxes from last year!
The deed info listed on the PVA website said that the deed was not available online (another good sign because that usually means that they've owned the property for a good while & they might not have a mortgage) so I went to the city deed book room & got a printout of the deed & title. It was purchased in 1975 so that's good.
I Googled the owner's name & address & it looks like he's old school because he still has a land line phone so I called him. We had a brief but very encouraging phone conversation. I had my script in hand ready to ask all of the questions but I didn't get too far because he said that he was on his way out the door when I called but he did ask me if I could call him back next week so that we could talk in more detail about the property. After introducing myself to him I told him that I was interested in his property & asked if he had considered selling it. He said that it wasn't for sale at the moment but it had been for sale last year but he took it off the market. He said that he could give me a lot more info when I called back & that until I called again he might consider selling it again! I almost lost it!
The only question that I have is...when I call him back, how do I bring up the issue about the unpaid taxes & how do I offer my services to help him in this situation so that it will work for both of us? Right now I have to have seller financing to get me started & it looks like this would be a good way to get in the door. The property isn't in the best part of town but the building has been very well-kept & I don't know why he hasn't paid the taxes.
How do I approach that area (unpaid taxes) as a part of negotiating a creative finance deal when I talk to him again? I need encouragement so I don't get stuck in fear! :)
Congratulations on taking the leap! I only buy or wholesale properties that are off market and where I am in negotiations with the seller so I understand a little about where your coming from, a little excited and nervous at the same time. A few tips to help you out are make sure you call him back! I would spend a little more time getting to know him and ask a few questions about the property, like how long he has had it for, does he have a property manager, trying to have him give some information about the property, he may say a few things that will point in the direction you are wanting. If that doesn't work ask politely about the expenses of the property and if you were to buy it is everything current because your not sure but you were looking up some details about the property and you found something. As long as its not said in a threatening manner but in more of a helpful tone and approach you should be in good shape. I would also listen to the BP pod casts they have a few on negotiations that will be very helpful to you. I hope this has helped.
Thanks for the info. I'm taking notes :)
Congrats Renee'! From my limited experience I've always found that trial and error is the best way to learn anything, especially in the real estate business.
Taking the first step is always the hardest, but it sounds like you nailed it.
Thanks for the encouragement! I tried to call the seller back this week but now he's not answering his phone & I've left messages but no return call. I'm trying not to get disappointed because there could be any number of reasons why but I know that I have to be patient & keep moving.
Any luck @Renee'Dixon?
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