Many vehicles that are up for repossession are equipped with
Onstar, or other satellite tracking system. There are skip tracing
companies that will provide you with the vehicles satellite tracking
data for a fee. You then know exactly where to locate and repossess
the vehicle you are after. This same technology is used on most new
RV's and even some boats.
There are information brokers that "Ping" a specified cell phone and
provide you with it's exact location. If you know the cellular phone
number of the person driving the car you are trying to repossess, you
can ping their cell phone, get their location, and dispatch a tow
truck to their location.
Very effective way to repossess a tough car. There are several brokers
selling pings at this point, costs range from $200 to $500 per ping.
Not a cheap tool, but very effective when everything else has failed
to find you your collateral.
times a repossessor will have a phone number for their skip and need
the address that phone number rings at. This is called a "Phone Break"
or a "Phone Reverse Search"
If you dial 00 on your phone you will get a long distance operator,
tell them you want a reverse listing for the phone number you are
trying to break. If the phone number is a listed phone number, the
operator will give you the name and address for that phone number.
Then you can repossess the car you are skip tracing.
This is a legal way for a repossessor to break a phone number.
Directory of Repossession Companies, and
Repo Links has added a nationwide directory of
repossession companies and repossessors that have a
proven track record of getting the job done. This is not
just a listing of repossessors, this is a listing of the
best, repossessors in the United States and Canada.
Contact Repo Links today to get your company listed
in our directory of repossession professionals. Make
your repossession web site available to bankers,
lawyers, and credit unions that are looking for a
repossessor in your service area.
Free Repossession Information, Tips & Tricks
What is a Repossession?
Repossession is the process of a lender taking
possession of the security that was pledged as
collateral on a defaulted loan or lease contract.
You have to find the debtor in order to repossess the
car you are after. The process of hunting down your
debtor is called "Skip Tracing". This website has skip
tracing and repossession tips and tricks that will help
you find your debtor, so you can repo their car.
We also offer many tips and tricks for the repossession
process itself. Bookmark this page and check back soon
as we are always updating Repo-Links.com with new skip
tracing and repossession tips and tricks.
Working Cost Effectively
At any point on any case you are just one phone call
away from solving that case. It is just a matter of
placing the correct call to the correct person. There
are usually many different ways to locate your skip,
choosing the shortest trail available will take practice
Always look at the balance while considering how hard to
look for your skip. Don’t get old apt bldg. rental
applications while trying to repossess a 1987 Volkswagen
that would be an excellent step if you were looking for
a $15,000.00 first payment default vehicle.
Small balance accounts ($500.00) should have all of the
basics covered, caller ID, utilities, interviewing of
friends and family and maybe work the credit report.
Everyone can be found, it just isn’t cost effective to
Large balance accounts can require using many skip
tracing tools and techniques. With experience you will
soon pick the shortest most cost effective path to solving your case.
Take Me to Your Car
Problem: You know where the person you are trying to
repossess lives and the car is going into the garage.
You know where the person works, but they work downtown
in a high rise building. You have searched several of
the closest parking garages, but you can't seem to find
the car you are trying to repossess. Call the subject at
work and tell them that you have repossessed their car,
and you are waiting in the lobby of their building
attempting to give them their personal property. Once
they meet you in the lobby of their building have them
sign a personal property and give you the keys to the
car. When they ask for their property, tell them that
the car is still at the lot where they left it. With a
little finesse you can get the debtor to lead you
directly to the car you are trying to repossess. Plus
you already have their keys.
Repossession Using a Dog Leash
Using a key to repossess the car you are after is always
quicker and safer than any tow truck on the road today.
Keep a dog leash with you when you are walking up behind
someone's house. If you are confronted, you can claim
that you are looking for your kids lost dog. Having the
dog leash with you as a prop is very effective. As well
the dog leash can be a very effective weapon if the
Several websites are providing satellite views for
any address in the United States and Canada. Very
helpful if you are working in a rural area and want to
see how many garages and where they are situated on a
property. Satellite views cal also be used to find
access roads that you might not have found otherwise.
Mapquest.com has the same feature available, they
call it an "Ariel View" rather than a satellite view.
Repossession Go Jacks
So you found the car you are trying to repossess, but
the car is parallel parked on the street with no way to
get your tow truck on the front or back of the car to
drag it out of it's parking space. What do you do?
Put a Go Jack on each tire and push the vehicle out of
it's parking space by hand. Then repossess the car as
you normally would. They won't work on gravel or dirt,
perfect for concrete or asphalt.
What is a Go Jack? A
Go Jack is a hydraulic wheel lift jack on casters.
Slide the go jack under the tire, step on the hydraulic
pedal two or three times and the car is now rolling on
the Go Jack's casters, ready for
Repossession Skip Tracing Tools and Links
Here are some free links around the internet that
should help get you skip tracing cars like a pro in no time.
Check out each link, plug in known information to the
databases and see what information is returned. Check
the information that is returned for accuracy. This will
show you how accurate each of the searches are.
Take some time and experiment with each of the
databases. Experience each databases strong points and
weaknesses so that you know what each databases can
and can't deliver.
Verification Service - This is a good place to start
on any repossession case that you are skip tracing.
Great way of identifying typo's in VIN numbers. This
will also help you identify your collateral by telling
you number of doors on your vehicle and other
descriptive information, like if your vehicle is front
wheel drive or rear wheel drive.
Edmunds.com - This
website has pictures of every vehicle sold in the last
10 years. Any good repossessor should be able to tell
the difference between a BMW 525 and a BMW 325I. Here
are the pictures. Now it's time to study. Also useful if
you need to know if a particular model vehicle is front
wheel drive or rear wheel drive.
Department of Highway Safety & Motor Vehicles - The
state of Florida must have a debtor magnet buried
somewhere near Miami. It seems that whenever a debtor
east of the Mississippi decides that it's time to move
to greener pastures, Florida is their destination. So
this is the link to their Department of Motor Vehicles.
You can run vin numbers to see if they are registered in
Florida. If you have the debtor's drivers license
number, you can run that also. Lots of great
NADA Vehicle Pricing
- Great way to find current vehicle values. It isn't a
tool that you really use in Skip Tracing. Your customers
will always call you asking what a vehicle is worth. So
ultimately it is a website you should be familiar with.
Company Search - There is a service offered on this
website that will return you a listing of the utility
companies that service the city you input. So if you
need to find the electric company in Tupelo,
Mississippi, or the cable tv company in Des Moines,
Iowa, their Utility company trace is very useful.
If there is a website you like to use for skip
tracing cars for repossession, please send us an email
and we will add it to this area.
Key Codes and Repossession Keys
Every vehicle that has been sold in the last ten years
has a key code. A copy of the key code is usually kept
on file at the car dealership. A key code is simply a
code number used to cut the keys. The repossessor either
does this himself with a key cutting machine or has a
locksmith do it for him. Although most repo men are locksmiths themselves, this is really not a
requirement. Most repo men simply have an account with a
local locksmith who does his work for him. With the key
codes, the repo man simply has a set of keys cut and
uses them to perform the repossession.
Check Vehicle Service Records
You would be surprised at how much information a car
dealership keeps in their vehicle service records. If
you have a contact at a dealership service department,
they can search by the vehicle identification number for
the vehicle you are trying to repossess. If they find a
record, it will have the person's name who brought it in
for service, along with their address, and phone
This is a great step to take if you are out
of leads on a case.
Skip Tracing Tips
is a collection of local skip tracing tools and
information. You can look up the state you are hunting
in and find many useful resources for skip tracing in
that area. Phone numbers are
listed for many state agencies and government offices
helpful to skip tracers and repossessors.
Vehicle Identification Numbers or VIN Number
Any vehicle sold in the USA after 1981 was issued a 17
digit Vehicle Identification Number or VIN number. It is
like a social security number for a car, where no two
cars have the same VIN number. The Vehicles
manufacturer, year, make, model, and other useful
information is coded into the VIN number. To prevent
confusion with the numbers 0 and 1, the letters o and i
are never used in VIN numbers.
How to Hot Wire Any Diesel Engine
Occasionally a repossessor will not have the keys to a
vehicle and need to hot wire it in order to repossess
it. You can hot wire any diesel by shorting out the
terminals on the
starter solenoid. This will only start the engine.
It will not release any steering locks or transmission
locks. This will start any Diesel engine from a semi
truck to a Diesel VW Rabbit.
Utility Company Trace
This text is provided for informational purposes
only, as it would be illegal to:
Call the Electric company where you suspect your
debtor has moved to, and tell them that you are attorney
Robert O'Neil. Explaining that Mr. & Mrs. Debtor have
retained your services to represent them in a
bankruptcy. You are calling the Electric company to
ensure that all of Mr. and Mrs. Debtor's accounts are
included in the filing. You have their social security
numbers and need a listing of their accounts, current
and past due.
Don't ever make that phone call cause it would be
illegal to impersonate an attorney. It would also be
Call the Electric company where you suspect your
debtor has moved to, and tell them that you are Mr.
Debtor. You are in the process of refinancing your
house, and there is a past due account on your credit
report from their company showing up. Tell them you live
in another city that they do not service. So you are
curious as to what this bill is for. They will ask you
for your social security number and check for any
accounts under that social.
Again, this text is provided for informational
purposes, as a guide of what it would be illegal to to.
You are responsible for anything else that you may do
with this information.
A police officer, or a patrol car accompanying the
repossessor, or the showing of a badge has been found by
the United States Supreme Court to constitute “Color of
Law” and has taken the repossession out of the area of
“purely private conduct without state assistance.” It is
therefore a violation of the individual's right to due
Similarly, the Supreme Court of New Mexico has ruled
that a Military Police Officer at the scene of a
repossession on a military base was a violation of the
individual's Fourteenth Amendment rights. If you do not
have a proper court order, do not take a police officer
with you on a repossession.
"The Quarter Trick"
The house where you think your debtor lives has a garage. You are
confident that he lives here, yet the car you are trying to repossess
does not show. Could the car be in the garage?
If you take a quarter, lean it up against the far corner of the
garage door, so that if the garage door was to open, the quarter would
fall over. Then as you drive by at various times during the day and
night, you can see if the garage is being used, and you can get an
idea as to when they are coming and going.
Check your equipment daily before you get out on the road and start
hunting. Like any professional, you are only as good as your tools.
Your tools make you money, so take good care of them. Check all of
your fluid levels, including your hydraulic fluid level. You know how
much louder a hydraulic pump is once it starts sucking a little air.
Make a checklist of everything on your truck that should be
checked, power steering, oil, transmission, tires, etc. and get in the
habit of checking them daily.
Be Advised, It would be illegal to call up the phone number you are
trying to break and tell them that you are the are a repairman working
for the phone company. Explaining that a truck hit a telephone
poll and you are repairing the phone lines. Ask them if their phone
number is xxx-xxx-xxxx. Change the last 2 digits from their phone
number to some other number. They should correct you and give you
their phone number. You would then say that you see that line here
also. Ask them what address that number is supposed to ring at. 9 out
of 10 times they will give you their address.
Remember, it would be illegal for a repossessor to make a call like