Are you buried in utility bills? See this solution . . .

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Realty Pilot

There are three ways most REO agents handle their utility bills:

1. Pay each bill with a check and set the check aside for several weeks until it is due to minimize the leverage of funds

2. Pay by bill-pay through your banking website which only takes daunting hours of your time due to hundreds of accounts that are no longer used or require deletion

3. Use Realty Pilot's Concourse 360 to create the record of the check file and print one check for each utility company at the end of the month

Let's face it banks don't pay a management fee for properties as an REO and the longer the hold time of a property the more free labor the banks are squeezing out of you. One of the most important things to know is where your break even number with days to hold a property is. Is it based on the number of tasks that are involved, is it due to the price of the home or is it the amount of time the home stays in your inventory? All of these are concerns but the one most important is hold time. The longer the hold time the more chance the REO asset will cost you money rather than make you money. So what do you do? First, pin point what costs you money then find a way to minimize those costs. Since this blog is about utilities I am going to let you in on a little secret.

Utilities will cost you money by the amount of time spent paying the bill-pay through your bank and takes money out of your pocket immediately. They will also cost you money printing numerous amounts of checks every month only to release them strategically hoping not to miss one and you still have to scan a copy of that check for the invoice record. Additionally there could be deposits and bonds involved to support the volume of bills under your own name. So what do you do?

Realty Pilot's Concourse 360 has come up with a very unique check writing system that allows you create the check file within their system right from the expense record that looks just like your check without printing and scanning. This check file stays with the expense that is tracked for each property. This allows the agent to pay all bills for a utility company on one check at the end of the month. So now you only have to print one check for each utility company and your money is not immediately dispersed allowing you to reduce the amount of time your funds are leveraged for the bank or asset company.

Comments (4)

David Spencer
Keller Williams Northland - Kansas City, MO
Show Me real estate in Kansas City

Leave the utilities off and tell the buyer to turn them on for inspection. This is how many banks are handling it.

Jan 08, 2012 09:42 AM
Realty Pilot
Realty Pilot - Phoenix, AZ

I agree for those banks it is a good way to help the agent but in many areas that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have properties we are seeing agents using our expense feature and the utilities are a major portion of the bills.

Jan 08, 2012 09:55 AM
Anonymous
Pam Brown

Bertha Pyne from Greenville, NC is one of the largest REO realtors in the county.  She told me about 2 weeks ago that she got stuck with $36,000 in reo rehab fees and utility and other fees after the reo/bank filed for bankruptcy.  She said she will never get her money back that she forked out. Has this happened to anyone else?  And what should a realtor do if we get caught in this type situation.   Hard to believe, hah!

Jul 27, 2012 06:54 AM
#3
Anonymous
Wesley W

As Realtors we have allowed this type of situation to happen. Fo r any normal client , we have contracts that state if we spend money on a property iwth out having theright to file a lien against that property.  However many banks and REO companies try to get agents to void or wavier that right. There has to be apoint wher you willing to give up the business, and fight for your money. It a situtation like that the correct term is LAWYER

Nov 11, 2012 12:03 PM
#4