12 Ways to Use Skip Tracing to Find Motivated Home Sellers

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Real estate lead generation is one of the more challenging aspects of a real estate agent’s work. How do you get yourself in front of motivated home sellers to generate more business? You can mass market, use email marketing and direct mail, cold calling, etc. but your return on investment will be lower than if you tried skip tracing — especially batch skip tracing. Experts know how to leverage the data to locate potential motivated sellers with a property records search software.

If you’re wondering “What is rei skip tracing?” and how it can help you as a real estate investor, you’re not alone. REI skip tracing, or real estate investor skip tracing, is a specific type of skip tracing that’s best suited to people who want to get deeper into the real estate investment game — and it’s an easy way to find motivated home sellers

Knowing how to apply the best real estate skip tracing for lead generation starts with seller profiles. What kind of owners are most likely to list their home in the next year? Motivated sellers typically have one of these reasons for putting their home on the market:

  1. Growing family: When a couple has had a baby within the last 24 months, they are more likely to be looking for a larger yard, more space, and better schools. That means listing their condo, apartment, or house. 
  2. Newly divorced couples: Properties are more likely to be sold and proceeds split. One or both parties may be seeking a new home, meaning you could assist with buying, too. 
  3. Empty nesters: When their children leave the house, couples find themselves in a property larger than what they need. They begin thinking about simplifying and cutting living expenses through downsizing. 
  4. Senior-owned home: Seniors may be transitioning to a different stage in their life and moving to a senior living facility. 
  5. Deceased owner: The trust, estate, or probate court may sell the deceased person’s property. 
  6. Tax delinquent property: If taxes and money are owed, the owner may be looking for a way out. 
  7. Pre-foreclosure property: The owners are behind or unable to make mortgage payments. 
  8. High-equity property: The owner has 50% or more of home equity in their property. They may want to reinvest elsewhere. 
  9. Out-of-state/ Absentee homeowner: Homeowners with a portfolio of multiple investment properties represent a significant portion of motivated sellers. 
  10. Vacant home: An opportunity to help sellers divest of an eyesore and potential fixer-upper potential. 
  11. Stale or expired listing: Properties that were put on the market but did not sell. 
  12. Corporate-owned: Properties owned by an LLC or business entity sometimes have multiple properties and may be willing to let one go. 

Now that these profiles have been defined, how do you apply skip tracing to these different scenarios?

A skip trace search scours, public records. The trace digs through helpful resources like:

Today’s online databases take minutes to run a skip trace. In a few clicks, run a search of courthouse records to show who has recently filed for divorce, bankruptcy, or foreclosure. Other databases track out-of-state owners, vacant properties, or multiple-property owners.

Consider the motivated seller going through a divorce. Skip tracing in real estate pulls courthouse records to show who has recently filed and their contact information. If you decide to target distressed properties, the skip trace will reveal these properties and owner information. Use the phone numbers, email address, or forward address to target marketing or touch base with the owners.

  • Online databases make it much easier for real estate professionals to run skip traces.
  • With access to public and property records, you may be able to track down people who have recently gotten a divorce, or filed for bankruptcy or foreclosure.
  • These records can help you identify people who could potentially sell their home in the near future so you can get in contact with them.

Skip tracing is a useful tool because it’s likely no one else has made contact with that motivated seller. When you’re the first –and maybe only– person in the door, the chances of them deciding to sell or list with you goes up. If you are interested in rei skip tracing, bulk skip tracing or using skip tracing software to find motivated sellers, sign up for Tracers skip tracing service and see how our data from the best skip tracing service for real estate investors can make the difference.

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