By Bob Corcoran, Corcoran Consulting & Coaching
The numbers are nearly inconceivable and they continue to rise. A recent report by the Congressional Oversight Panel created in 2008 to monitor financial markets and those who regulate them, found that each month, roughly 250,000 new foreclosures are started, while 100,000 are completed.
With those kinds of numbers, you can expect your fellow agents and brokers to be jumping on board. Asset managers tell me that yes, competition for properties remains strong, but there's still room for agents to enter the field.
"There's still some life to live in foreclosures," says Stephen Sherman, chief operating officer at Green River Capital, an asset management company in Green River, Utah. "There are a ton of aged delinquencies waiting to hit the market, and we're always looking for good new agents to use on an as needed basis, especially in new areas of the country where we haven't operated before."
Sherman's prediction: "REO will remain at high levels and we'll see a steady increase through 2012 or 2013, and the industry will do better this year than last."
And here's another good reason to reconsider REO. Sherman says Chase, the financial services giant, has now limited asset assignments to agents who are within a five-mile radius of the properties in the larger metropolitan areas with more than a million people. It used to be about 20 miles, so that increases the amount of agents we need and opens possibilities for more agents.
So what to do? First, if you don't have experience, get an REO certification (Sherman and others tell me it shows a commitment to the industry) and shadow or join a team that's already doing REOs.
After that, register with asset management companies as you can - almost all of them have online forms for agents to complete. Emphasize your training and experience as much as the form allows.
After that, asset managers say the next step is to network. Michael Hermosillo, director of operations at Precision Asset Management in Torrance, Calif., says he meets agents at various trade shows, at National Association of Realtors conventions and other meetings.
"Direct contact is the best way to get your foot in the door," Hermosillo says.
And Phillip Greenberg, director of operations and marketing at SkyhillREO, an asset management company in Huntington Beach, Calif., says when you meet asset managers, hammer home your knowledge of REO, especially in your market.
He says SkyhillREO has properties in all 50 states so it's imperative to rely on agents for news about local markets. "I like it when an agent can update me with the number of REOs in their area, what they've increased by, and the days on market, prices over the last two or three months, that helps us see trends. We couldn't do it without them."
And once you're in, it wouldn't hurt to explore other possibilities for your services inside asset management companies. For example, Sherman says Green River has divisions that, in addition to its REO work, handle short sales and BPOs.
"When we hire, ideally we like to build a partnership with brokers who might be able to help us in those areas as well. We like for them to grow together with our company."
For information on our programs that teach you how to skyrocket your REO career, whether you are new to REO or a seasoned professional, e-mail REO@CorcoranCoaching.com
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Bob Corcoran is a nationally recognized speaker and author who is founder and president of Corcoran Consulting Inc. (CorcoranCoaching.com, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems into the residential or commercial broker or agent's existing practice.
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