Bandit Signs Ineffective in Sacramento

14 Replies

Hey all,

Just posting an observation and seeing if anyone else from Northern Cali or elsewhere has seen the same.

I used to see bandit signs all over Sacramento, sometimes several per telephone pole, but about 3 months ago, they just up and vanished.  

I own a parking lot surfacing company in Sacramento so I am driving to different areas of Sacramento, chico, stockton, modesto, fresno, you name it ALL day, and have been looking for them in particular. So I don't believe its just my perception.

That leads me to think one of two things:

1) The county or cities have begun cracking down on the signs (Because they are illegal in my area without a permit and you cant get a permit to put one on a telephone pole or other city property) either fining hard or just taking them down so fast that the investors arent getting the calls.

2) The market is so seller favorable and deals are so scarce due to the raising home prices and improving economy that the lack of opportunities do not justify the cost of the marketing. 

I think number two is more likely, because lets face it if investors were making deals happen on bandit signs no 1000 dollar fine is going to stop them. I wonder if direct mail marketing is having the same troubles...

So whats happening out there? any thoughts?

I am in Fresno and I have noticed a CONSIDERABLE drop in the effectiveness of every type of marketing. I stopped doing bandit signs about 6 months ago, but I used to do a minimum of 150 a month. When I started doing signs in the Fall of 2013 I would generally only need to put up 30-50 a month in order to get a solid 1-2 deals/mo just from the signs. Half way through 2014 the effectiveness dropped quite a bit. I was putting up 150+ a month and would easily have 300+ hanging up at any given time and the overwhelming majority of calls were people asking if i had houses they could rent with VERY FEW sellers ever calling me.

I think the effectiveness of direct mail dropped due to market saturation as well as the increase of available market data and news letting everyone know real estate is on the rise.

I am still cranking out 3-5 deals a month but my cost and time per acquisition has definitely gone up over the past year. Your post is a great reminder for me to continue to look for ways to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of everything I do! :)

I've been placing bandit signs in Austin Texas for about nine months. I'm not the only person doing so for REI purposes. I switched from white to yellow signs and instantly noticed drop in calls. I'm not sure if it's the color of the sign or because folks don't recognize them as being the same message as the white signs; but, I've noticed that significant drop. I still see a ton of other investor's/wholesaler's signs out there.

In San Antonio, TX I notice there aren't any bandit signs marketing to motivated sellers. There are signs for repairing lawns mowers and moving companies; but, none from investor's/wholesaler's. 

Obviously this isn't specific to the Sactown market; but,  hopefully it add value by giving some perspective on two other "hot markets."

@Chris 

@Chris Williams  

thanks for the comments chris. I would guess that the effectiveness would go down but to see 99% of signs gone over a couple month period is still surprising. 

Always have to find a way to overcome adversity, Keep going Chris!

When the TV shows about flipping are many, so too will the number of investors (and pseudo investors) in the market.  When this happens, there is some inherent marketing saturation since there are only so many distressed sellers and everyone and their grandkids are marketing to them. Marketing strategies will have to change in order to have he effectiveness they previously had. I'm already working on my strategy revisions. 

Guy Gimenez, Buying Texas Today | [email protected] | (512) 270‑7279 | http://www.BuyingTexasToday.com

Very true Guy. Those TV personalities are coming to my city with their seminars on about a monthly basis.

@Guy Gimenez

Just curious as to what types of marketing you currently use, I think I remember you talking about direct mail at your last meeting, is there anything else you typically use? Flyers? SEO? 

I think the quality of bandit signs declining. 

I, personally, believe that in SoCal its a sellers market and nobody really pays too much attention to bandit signs.  Home owners are more educated, and prefer to speak to a realtor prior to listing/selling their home. 

I did, not long ago see 2 bandit signs, one under the other. Top one stated "I buy homes" and the one under neath it "I buy cars" - it made me chuckle. 

I'm glad to hear your results are declining. Hopefully y'all will quit putting them up. There is no single other element that gives investors a worse reputation that illegal, obnoxious, trespassing, litter, graffiti bandit signs! In southern California there are 3 different signs to every pole, on every freeway off ramp, and even twist tied to stop signs. I'm embarrassed by my own profession. 

I'm not fond of the bandit signs. But they are effective and part of the business.

Some poster on here is paying a bounty for them.  I may start this summer.  Buck apiece, as many as you bring me.

For now, I just pull them up when it is convenient, and toss them in the trash.  

I think bandit signs are a form of sight pollution, I am sure people call on them.  I just hate to see them in our community.  In some areas the fines are very high, as much as $700.00 per sign per day.  I know of an investor that was fined $25,000 (he was warned more than once, but he  keep putting them up).  He doesn't hang them anymore.

Let's take the word "Bandit" out of this marketing concept and call them legal signs.

Design a sign, keep it simple, WANTED all real estate...houses, commercial or non-conforming. Call ______________________________________ X _______.

in small print ----- This sign has been placed here with the permission of the owner

Design an agreement to be signed by you and your sponsor. A sponsor is anyone who will put your sign on their lawn or in the window of their store. The agreement will say something like, I Charles Investor agree to pay you X $ for every lead (or sale, flip or assignment) that you refer to me.  In the agreement there is a script. The instructions are, when you get a call, ask the following questions and tell the caller that someone will call them shortly.  The questions are; what's the address, condition, asking price name and phone number. Keep it simple. When the sponsor calls you with the lead, go do your thing. Your sponsor has a record of all leads he refers to you.

So that your sponsor feels part of this program, his telephone number is put on the sign. It could be easy money for your sponsor and you will probably get leads and close some deal and you will not be a bandit.

If your sponsor does not want to be bother with taking calls, put your number on the sign and assign an extension so that you can identify your sponsor and the location of the sign.

How many locations can you put your legal sign; on the lawn at a busy intersection, in the window of supply houses, corner convenient store, your mother's house.....anywhere and anyone you can convince that this is a nice way to earn some extra money.

Charles

No company avatar mediumCharles Parrish, Auction Brokers | [email protected] | 866‑474‑7000 | http://CharlesParrish.Com | MD Agent # 59882 Maryland

Originally posted by @Charles Parrish:

I think bandit signs are a form of sight pollution, I am sure people call on them.  I just hate to see them in our community.  In some areas the fines are very high, as much as $700.00 per sign per day.  I know of an investor that was fined $25,000 (he was warned more than once, but he  keep putting them up).  He doesn't hang them anymore.

Let's take the word "Bandit" out of this marketing concept and call them legal signs.

Design a sign, keep it simple, WANTED all real estate...houses, commercial or non-conforming. Call ______________________________________ X _______.

in small print ----- This sign has been placed here with the permission of the owner

Design an agreement to be signed by you and your sponsor. A sponsor is anyone who will put your sign on their lawn or in the window of their store. The agreement will say something like, I Charles Investor agree to pay you X $ for every lead (or sale, flip or assignment) that you refer to me.  In the agreement there is a script. The instructions are, when you get a call, ask the following questions and tell the caller that someone will call them shortly.  The questions are; what's the address, condition, asking price name and phone number. Keep it simple. When the sponsor calls you with the lead, go do your thing. Your sponsor has a record of all leads he refers to you.

So that your sponsor feels part of this program, his telephone number is put on the sign. It could be easy money for your sponsor and you will probably get leads and close some deals and you will not be a bandit.

If your sponsor does not want to be bother with taking calls, put your number on the sign and assign an extension so that you can identify your sponsor and the location of the sign.

How many locations can you put your legal sign; on the lawn at a busy intersection, in the window of supply houses, corner convenient store, your mother's house.....anywhere and anyone you can convince that this is a nice way to earn some extra money.

Charles

No company avatar mediumCharles Parrish, Auction Brokers | [email protected] | 866‑474‑7000 | http://CharlesParrish.Com | MD Agent # 59882 Maryland

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