Weekly Live Probate Training: How to get paid as an expert witness at probate court; building social capital with probate attorneys AND title attorneys; and navigating probate situations with transfer of treasurer’s deeds, missing wills and missing heirs, and no vacant property insurance.
Bill Gross hosts today’s weekly probate mastermind training with Probate Mastery Alumni. Eamon kicks off the call by sharing what made him stand out to a personal representative who had better offers from other agents and investors. Next, Bill breaks down his exact process for networking at the probate court and solidifying himself as a probate expert to probate leads, probate attorneys, and probate court staff. Bill and Eamon discuss the ROI of cold-calling attorneys. Next, Josh shares how he built social capital by bringing his probate lead list to a title attorney and showing them the opportunity in doing things the right way where other professionals are missing the mark. Ruben and Bill discuss how to apply divorce real estate marketing techniques to the probate real estate space. The group shares advice for offering trusted advice without badmouthing somebody, dealing with vacant insurance, and navigating situations where heirs are difficult to find.
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Episode #32 of Estate Professionals Mastermind Podcast
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THIS WEEK’S CHALLENGE: Bill Gross underscores his challenge to everyone to go to their probate court, go where attorneys go, and act like you belong until you do.
Training Topics In This Episode (YouTube Links):
0:00 Wholesaling probate deals: Beating other cash offers by providing great service
2:14 My exact probate lead gen process for learning the probate process, winning attorney referrals, and getting paid as an expert witness at the probate court
10:23 Should you cold call probate attorneys for referrals?
12:22 Building social capital with title attorneys and helping heirs save equity when selling probate property
14:28 Probate and undervalued tax assessed value, capital gains tax on inherited property
16:09 Using paralegal service vs probate attorney: Louisiana succession vs. probate
18:25 Divorce real estate vs. probate real estate: How to master your market in either real estate niche
23:06 How to offer trusted advice about a bad real estate agent: What My Cousin Vinny can teach you about networking with probate attorneys
26:59 Tips for vacant property in probate and finding vacant insurance providers
30:27 Navigating probate situations: Treasurer’s deeds, Medicaid liens, missing will, skiptracing missing heirs, and advance inheritance companies.
- Connect with Bill Gross: Join the next Probate Weekly call and check out past episodes.
- Join Estate Professionals Mastermind Group (Facebook)
- Take Chad’s Probate Course and get Certified
- Learn Probate, Real Estate Investing, Creative Finance, and more on our YouTube Channel
- 18 Prompts for YouTube Videos that will Jumpstart your Probate Real Estate Marketing – Probate Mastery
- Recent Content:
- Group Probate Coaching 31: https://probatemastery.com/calling-probate-leads-find-missing-life-insurance-policies-probate-marketing-strategy
- Paul Moore guests on Estate Professionals Mastermind: How to get into Commercial Real Estate Investing without adding hours to your workweek – With Guest Paul Moore of Bigger Pockets – Probate Mastery
- Bill’s recommendation for inheritance cash advances: www.approvedinheritancecash.com, and his conversation with Paul Wilkins: https://youtu.be/jzdLdmRe8vQ
- Probate paralegal service/Successor paralegal service in all 50 states: ez-probate.com
PROBATE TRAINING SESSION TRANSCRIPTS: (Download PDF of Full Transcript)
Eamon’s success with probate investing: Beating other cash offers by providing great service
Hey, good afternoon. This is Bill Gross and I’m filling in for Chad Corbett on the probate mastery mastermind call. We do this every Tuesday.
So I’m glad to help you understand that we all have little different solutions and problems. Let me just start with first, who here has a success they’d like to share with everyone? y have a probate listing they took recently or closing?
Yeah, I can jump on here. But it was a little before I started to implement this model and We found that somebody in probate really didn’t want to deal with the attorney, the courts, all of this and that. They had deals on the table that were better than ours. But nobody was listening to anything they were saying.
I kept going back to him. I wasn’t even picking up on this in the beginning. But as soon as I turned around and was like, listen what is it that you need that nobody else is asking or offering or bringing to the table? He’s like, man, I just want this to be done. I want you to go talk to my attorney, figure out the logistics and just handle this and I’ll take, you know, whatever.
So we ended up beating out people with the offer that was 15 grand lower and netted us another 15 grand on our, what we thought we were going to bring in. And we assigned that contract for 40,000. All he wanted was somebody to deal with his attorney, work with the attorney on the paperwork getting the appraisal done, which wasn’t even necessary in the end because the court-approved what the sale was ended up being.
And we got a $40,000 assignment on that one. Nice. Where was this one area? This was in Hingham, Massachusetts. Okay. In the south part of a mass, yeah, look, I think good fundamentals are always good fundamentals. And when you talk to a prospect, the most important thing is to know what they want.
And too often, we want to beat them over the head with our company’s features and benefits, and doesn’t matter what do they want? And once you ask the question and solve the problem, it puts you in a position. And I will say that particular need, handling the attorney handling the paperwork is one I get regularly that I work with a lot and I’ve learned how to use paralegal service to help me distinguish myself from the competition because attorneys are very expensive.
The salesmanship is often lacking. I find it good for you. Amen. Thank you. Thank you for sure.
My exact process for learning the probate process, winning attorney referrals, and getting paid as an expert witness at the probate court
Let me share with you today why am I wearing a tie? So I want to just share with you when I took Chad’s course, he challenged us to go to court.
I think one of the things that I try to differentiate from the competition is I approach the business as a probate expert. I go to court regularly. I want to impress the attorneys. I’m going to impress the judges. That’s worth a lot to me. One way is when I go to court, I dress like an attorney. I wear a dark suit, my coat hanging on the door.
But this morning I was on and I was called as a witness on a case that had. And while I could get away not being an attorney wearing a dress shirt or a polo shirt, I want to look like an attorney. So that’s why I wore my coat and tie because I want to look like an attorney to the judge. I want to look like an attorney to the attorneys, and to my prospects. And I think it’s important when you get a chance if your goal is to work in the court and for goals to work with attorneys, make sure you look like them, talk like them, act like them and dress like them. Some of you on this call a week or two ago, ask me about going to lunch with attorneys.
And I said how do attorneys in your market dress? That’s how you should dress. And now a court in LA, you cannot go to the judge without a coat on if you’re an attorney, but realtors will show up all the time. There was a time when I was a kid. That you weren’t allowed to be in court at all with a coat and tie, different time, different age, but I want to look like them.
So I wear a suit and tie when I go to court and I would say to all of you, the most appropriate here though, is to look like your prospects. If your attorney dresses in a suit, then you should dress in a suit. If you go to lunch with them and go by and see them, that makes sense? Okay. Good. So that was my victory for the week.
Is this being an expert witness, you get paid really good money to answer questions.
Stephanie Worley hands up what’s up lately. So I’m curious. Calling the probate courts or at call and listen to their voicemail and everything is still closed. Because I love that. I would love to go to the probate court and be a presence and I thought it was awesome.
But now we can’t do that. So I was wondering if you had any ideas or tips or tricks or, you know, what we could do to adopt that kind of to COVID a little bit. Yeah, great question. So I used to go to court every day, Monday through Friday, I was there at 7 45. I bought a cup of coffee. I stayed in the main hallway.
My goal is to bump into people there, just myself, to attorneys and estates. And then I’d go into the courtroom, again that was Chad’s initial suggestion and then listen to the certain part of the day they call the calendar. It’s like the beginning, they cover most cases there. And I went every day and did that for about two and a half years, it was great.
But can’t do that today. So I will say, I don’t know. I mean, every court’s different, some courts are wide open right now, depending on your county. Some are shut down tight, and mine shut down tight, but whenever I get a chance to be on, I go in person. So sometimes I’ve gone for court confirmation sales that go in person, even though I could go on video, I rather go there to meet the attorney and have the judge see me.
And then when I can’t, it happens on video, I always dressed like an attorney. So as I make cation to Florida for a week in the middle of which I had this appearance on a court matter, but I brought a coat tie and a dress shirt. I brought a stand-up camera so I could stand up. And I brought the equipment to run it.
Video to talk to charities because that wouldn’t make a professional appearance and maximize that opportunity. So I’m not sure how to answer the question for you purposely, but that’s specifically best combined. My strategy is whenever a chance to go to court, I would go and it would always make, I would always dress like the attorney.
I have two sets of business cards. I have my realtor cards picture and such color. And I have my attorney cards, which are like attorneys, business cards. What do they look like? Does anybody know what attorneys’ business cards look like? Almost no pictures, no picture, the logo, black and white. Right. So I have two sets of cards.
when I meet an attorney, I always give them that card. Why would I give him that card? That’s what they think of this card looks like. I want to look like one of them. So to answer your question Stephanie, it depends on your market, but I would say wherever you are, somebody should say, well, I think that’s an attorney.
That’s what you want them to say.
Do you feel like maybe a bar association meeting or something like that can accomplish the same thing? I’m a member in LA county, LA bar association. Just today. I signed up for San Bernardino. Definitely, now I’m not going to mixers. You know, I, there’s a personal amount of time.
You have to think about how you invest in your business. I’m 62 years old. I need to get a good night’s sleep. I need to be home, need exercise, or brand new grandchild. So I want to work eight to five. I don’t want to go out at night to a mixer, that’s me. So, if you’re building your business, you should go out to make sure some of you enjoy them, then go out.
So you’d make your own decisions. They have classes online that I jump in on either live or always watch the ones that relate to my topic, they’re on YouTube. Some are members only. Some are not but when I’m on, of course, what am I wearing? Right. So definitely I would say those bar association events are a great place.
If you’re business about meeting attorneys, a great place to go and meet them, bump into them. And again, they’re opening up more Las difference. Other areas are opening up more.
Eamon, your hand’s up again, I have a two-part question for you.
When you’re going to the court what is that looking like in, I guess, you know, how are you interacting with people in the probate court in that capacity? Sure. So I would say that I did a couple of things. I’d say three categories of activities. Number one, when I had nothing else to do, just like a realtor would door knock a farm area.
I farmed the courthouse. Now again, I was in the largest probate courthouse in America. We had, I think, nine different rooms on two different floors, plus a research room. And so when I have nothing else to do, I would just look to meet people in front of probate court minutes. Either attorneys, I would walk up, introduce myself, no different than a realtor.
Door-knocking right. We also have a research room where they have computers. People can look files up. I would be there and I was Mr. Health. If you have a problem, how can I help you? It looks like you’re struggling, could be of assistance. And I was just bumping into attorneys there. They’d see me. So that’s number one, active number two activity is I would go, there are times that I had court matters.
Like I’m representing a buyer I’m bidding on a property for court approval or I’m representing an estate selling that needs court approval. Of course, I go to court for those matters. The third thing they did was because it was going every day. I created a meetup and I would invite investors who want to learn about probate court to meet me at court.
And I would give them a quick 15-minute walk through and think about if you were in a charity and you saw me walking, you saw me there every day and you saw me walking around with two or three students asking me questions and me answering them. What do you think about me as a real estate broker?
Knowledgeable you’re some sort of authority figure in this capacity. There you go. The truth is I just know more than those ideas. I didn’t need to know a lot at that point. Right. And then actually, where you get the coffee from. Haha, very nice! Probateweekly.com!
If you’re the guest of the week, you get your personalized version of it. Back in those days, you also didn’t sit in a room and watch the proceedings. And so I did that and when I had, there are certain times where everybody kind of goes in the room. So I would go in the room and watch and learn what was going on.
I would watch a court sale at least every day. And so in one year, for example, I saw 300 court sales. Most judges don’t see more than 50. So I saw way more than a judge or attorney or a real estate agent as a result of all that. So that quickly, you know, made me an expert by the virtue of experience I had, where I’d seen.
And there are cases where if the other circle rules I’ll give you one role. For example, the law says that you can’t sell a property with court approval at less than 90% of the court appraisal, probate referees in between appraisal well there’s exceptions and the attorneys are like, no, that’s the law.
And I’ll say, but I’ve seen judges approve exceptions. I’ve sold property with a judge grant as an exception because by seeing the exception, now I know what they are looking for and make sure I position my property to be worthy of exceptions by attorneys so I can say to my attorney, Hey, I know that there’s this rule, but here’s what I’ve seen, judge so-and-so view.
And here’s how we need to prepare for that. That became very valuable to the trainees I worked with. Yeah. So it’s, the precedent has been set and you can leverage that with facts. Oh, that’s great.
Should you cold call probate attorneys for referrals?
And the second part of the question is how are you finding your relationships with these attorneys? I’m assuming a lot of people in here starting like myself.
Where are you finding that things are starting to click? I’ve avoided calling the lists that we’re getting because, you know, I ran through some calls, was trying to connect with some people and they weren’t responding unless I had a client. Attorneys don’t like being cold-called? Yeah, no, I mean, of course.
But we’re trying to, you know, make sure we’re bringing value and I think that’s going to come with referrals. But I’m just failing to see where things might start to click or build a stronger connection. This is time, patients. It’s going to take months to find you know, Rolodex of people.
But in your experience, wherever you found things, start to come to fruition. Well, I won’t say that’s been my biggest area of success. I would say the opposite. That’s been the hardest part of that’s the part that I’m, for the amount of energy I put into attorney relationships, I’d get as much out of it as I think I should.
That said when you get them, they’re very valuable. My approach has I say there are 11 different ways to get business. And by working the attorneys, when you work the other side, the petitioner or the property or investors, and then you find the attorney that you’ve been marketing to, maybe you went to lunch with them, they’ll give me some inside information. It makes the difference in the deal. So to me, I felt that’s the advantage of a multi-pronged approach. I’m in a very big market where that’s not as common in a smaller market. I imagine it as much more common if you’re just working with the petitioner.
And you’re also taking a tray of lunch once a month. You’ll bump into that attorney because you’re in a smaller market than I am. I do know one agent who’s been in Chad’s program and he’s been on this call. He’s out here now. I don’t see him and I don’t want to call him out because he doesn’t want to share.
But in talking in person, I do know that he’s the only agent I know who cold calls attorneys consistently and as a result of that built a probate-based real estate business. But in the truth is I think he would say he has one or two really good relationships and a couple of others as well. And after those were two, wouldn’t have been worth it.
That helps a bit.
Building social capital with title attorneys and helping heirs save equity in probate property sales
I would like to add to that if that’s okay. Yeah, Josh, go ahead! Uh, One thing I’ve found over here was what Chad often calls some social capital with attorneys. When I run my probate lists when I was buying the probate lead. I noticed there wasn’t one attorney in our market dominating over here, over here in Louisiana it’s called successions.
A lot of the attorneys here kind of pick that up as aside, you know, side work. They don’t specialize in it. So I went back to my best title attorney, whereby the way, in the course of most of these probate sales, he has to go in and fix. the succession and revise them because they didn’t do the legal description right. Or, you know, they just didn’t put everything in right to give a merchable title. So instead I brought the list to him and said, look, there’s no one doing that’s dominating. Why don’t we do this? So now what we’re doing is he’ll run a preliminary title search for me. When I go on the meeting, the listing appointment, and I offer that as a service, he does a preliminary title, make sure that, you know, he doesn’t go back 50 years.
He just makes sure everything looks fine. And then in return, the estate will reserve the title attorney. In the MLS, we’ll say seller reserves title attorney, and we send it to him. Also, if there’s a succession that needs to be done, or maybe we did want to stay and we have another succession that an heir passed away along the way, that’s very common in Louisiana for some reason.
He will do the succession and get paid at closing, if he can do the title, be the closing attorney. So, he’s stout enough to be able to float that bill. And it helps my executor. It kinda takes an issue off the table. And again, no one’s dominating it. So he’s starting to position himself to be that guy.
You know, as soon as you said Josh, when I started the probate, I researched the prior two years, history, 95% of the cases were done by attorneys who had done one case for less. The prior two years, that was the only case where they didn’t have one 95% of the time. So which means a couple of things. One is nobody dominated to use your word from marketing as a marketing opportunity.
Probate and undervalued tax assessed value, capital gains tax on inherited property
The second was that 95% don’t do a very good job. And the customers aren’t very happy with them after spending all the money. If you can help them do a job better, then they’re open to that. And I’ll give you a prime example of that, that I’m hammering over here at this point. Cause a lot of my probate stuff comes from referrals and what I’m hammering in my meetings is using someone that knows what they’re doing. A lot of times, these probate attorneys or succession attorneys as it’s called here, they’ll run in and get the tax assessor’s value, which is commonly undervalued, which sets that estate up to pay a fortune in capital gains.
Instead of just getting a BPO. We don’t even have to have appraisals here in Louisiana, as long as the estate is debt-free or sufficient enough to cover his bills. So, I’m going around. Why wouldn’t you do this? I, we do it for free every day. Get a BPO, get what the property’s worth instead of running and putting whatever the tax assessor has it valued at, which is a blanket value which usually leaves it 20, 30, $40,000 undervalued, which sets them up for capital gains tax. And I think the thing to take away, because every market’s different, I will say, Josh, you’re in a state that’s more, it’s older as far as American law than California. And your typical real estate has been transacted more times, whereas we’ve been subdivided maybe in 1850 to 1900.
Yeah, Louisiana goes back further than that. Not to mention you have different laws from French law. I mean, there are all kinds of reasons why different states are different, but the fundamental principle here is if you really learn the system, you look to those nooks and crannies where nobody else even knows to operate master it, then who’s going to compete with you.
Right. And title is a great place to do that. Yeah. Josh.
Using paralegal service vs probate attorney: Louisiana succession vs. probate
I have one quick question. I want to brainstorm with you. So here we don’t, it doesn’t function. Let me it’s Louisiana. What do you expect? It doesn’t function the way any other probate system I’ve heard you guys explain – there is no probate clerk here.
The clerk of court will not, you can’t go and start a succession. On your own, you have to go to the law center, which had not. I went to the law center and I took my name tag off and I wanted to go through the process. And I think just to get in with the law center, it’s like 250 bucks, you know?
So there is no probate clerk. There is no way to start it yourself. It’s gotta be started with an attorney. So, you know, by the time they hit the courthouse, most of the time the estate has already settled judgment of possession. I don’t know what it’s referred to in other states, judgment of possession has been filed, placing the property in possession of the heir.
Wow. Totally different. Luckily I’ve, I run on referrals, and most of the time you know, when they come to me, it’s because they’ve already got that part done. But they’re not finished, you know, they still got, they still have to you know, do personal property dispensation, things like that to get the estate closed out.
But for most of the time, the real estate it’s already been judged for possession and placed in possession of the heirs. Well, yeah, it happens pretty fast here too many times. Just my unscientific analysis would be over half the property. They’re already picked an agent they’re going to list with before the filing has been approved within 30 days.
And yet they may or may not. It doesn’t mean I wouldn’t continue with them, but there was some of that too. That’s common in all markets. The thing I’d say, Josh, is you don’t need an attorney though. You kind of do, there’s a service I use, this is like a self-service kind of like QuickBooks or kind of like a Quicken, called easy hyphen probate.com in all 50 states. And they are attorney-owned. You know, they have the licenses they need, but they’re more of a paralegal kind of service. And so what I’ll do is somebody who hasn’t filed on their own or has filed their own and is stuck in the mud, is I’ll push them to that service to get the filing to move forward as a referral.
Now, if they’re more complicated than you would prefer it to a proper, in your case, the succession attorney, or hire a probate attorney, really probate attorneys here. It’s an expensive process and it’s standard probate. There’s no reason for it to go that route.
Divorce real estate vs. probate real estate: How to master your market in either real estate niche
Okay. Good other questions? Yes. Rubin. This is my first time in this meeting. And I’m also in the um, divorce niche. So what I do, I send an email to family law attorneys, and I tell them I would like to be with them and I show them there are certain gaps in their practice that sometimes can put them in trouble.
Or uh, their clients could be affected by their decisions or those gaps. So do you guys have a list of gaps in probate that we can do as realtors? So they can, they want to work with us? So I offer a complimentary service of things that I can do for them, even to keep the property because I have a partner that he’s a loan officer.
Sometimes they want to keep the property, which I don’t care about, but sometimes they want to sell, they will use me as a listing agent. So I was wondering if there are little things that they can be kind of interested in working with us with being different from the rest of the realtors, sometimes call them to get listings.
So I created, I would go to court every day and I start making a list of all the mistakes I saw estates, attorneys, or realtors make in the sun of real estate. And I just made a list of them. And then for each one, I create a solution. So I have a list of mistakes and a list of the solutions, but they’re pointing to me because I saw those mistakes and I understand the solution.
I think I would challenge every person in sales to do the same thing, to think about what mistakes the competition is making, you know, for example, in my MLS. I have a search for all properties are listed. They’re designated probate, and I get the, you know, as a realtor and just like might as a buyer, look at certain properties, feed bedroom, two baths in this neighborhood.
I get all the probate listings and I read the agent remarks on everyone. In the beginning, I noticed certain common mistakes. They didn’t update the court date. When the court date was set, they’d left, get the court date after court date passed, they didn’t update the list price after the property was sold initially, some mistakes like that.
And I went to court and noticed them. And so I just created, so I would ask, I would challenge all of. And if you don’t know the answers, you really can’t sell them because you have no solution, but you all know some of those mistakes. And I would say spend some time in the two things I would tell somebody who wants to learn this business is pull in your MLS, all the probate listings and look at them.
Who’s the listing agent. Is there a common commonality to that? Do they double in their deals all the time or not? Or some do. Is there a commonality to that? What are the more private remarks, which are the good private marks that as an agent would help you sell the house? What’s lacking? How many times they don’t have pictures or they have one picture, or they don’t have anything much showing the property? Start with the MLS.
And then the second thing that Chad challenged me to do was go to court and watch the proceedings. And I think it would just go there and pay attention and make a list. We all could create our lists. That’s why we originally to do. Does that help a little bit? Yeah. But I don’t know. I, the one that’s shown as a use of seeing them the mistakes done by the realtor when they already have it listed. There’s nothing we can do. Oh, I talked to our attorney and I’ll say in my experience of going to court regularly, I’ve noticed that real estate agents, other ones that you might be using now making any one of some 36 mistakes that caused the estate to lose money, waste time, and make you as an attorney look bad.
Okay. And I have a list of 42 points. I used to make sure that we don’t make those mistakes. I guess it’s kind of walk you through some of those. Okay. You only need three or four, whatever you think are the most common ones, but when you go to court and see, for example, the attorney did publicize the sale and upload it in the court document.
And they don’t know that’s one of the rules. One of the rules is you to publish the newspaper we’re to sell the property and then not accept a contract until after that date, That’s common estate law. That seems pretty basic. That’s basic. Most common mistakes and probate court, but by helping them avoid that, they won’t make that mistake.
They won’t lose that money. They won’t cause their estate that kind of problem. Does that make sense? So there are fewer mistakes, and when you talk to the attorney or the referral source or the petitioner of your next deal…. This is what I’ve seen my competition do. Let me share a couple of MLS printouts, how bad some of these other agents are.
You know, you can show them, be able to print out with mistakes and some are just horrific. Okay. Thanks. Okay. Other questions?
Katt says you get the referral next time. Yes. This is about working for the business in the future.
Anybody near Schenectady in New York, what part of New York is Schenectady? Lynette, you’re in Albany. Okay. Anybody in Albany or Schenectady in New York Lynette is looking for a property manager to meet up with. Who else had a question? I’m sorry.
I heard somebody though.
How to offer trusted advice about a bad real estate agent: What My Cousin Vinny can teach you about networking with attorneys
I had a quick question. As far as approaching the attorneys with that kind of information, and by the way, this whole lawyer thing works for you. Cause we’re all asking you about lawyers. Usually, when Chad does it, we all ask about certain transaction engineering. You’re the lawyer guy.
So a little story, and this was not an, not a lawyer, but it was a sales director of a retirement home. I had met her, we had a great relationship. We made a connection. Then she ended up quitting. But in the meantime I met her and then one of her friends introduced her to another realtor.
She mentioned that she was working with me and that she had met me and I provide the service and everything like that. And immediately during that lunch, the other realtor decided to punch up all my stats and kind of showed it to the sales director. My volume is not high because I do. I do part-time, however, whatever that means, and that immediately turned off the sales director from working with that particular realtor, because she said that’s kind of its backdoor.
She didn’t appreciate that. So at which point in a relationship with a lawyer, do you think that you could feel confident enough to where you’re not going to look, I don’t know not to stand up. If you bring up that their previous realtors have made all these mistakes and pointing these out to work on that relationship, because it can backfire on you is what I’m saying.
So let me ask you this by the call here, who here besides me has seen the movie, my cousin Vinny, if you have either raise your hand or per the chatbox me. Okay. So Dan has mark loves to scan just real quick shorthand. Okay. Who’s not seen the movie, my cousin Vinny, and once to market to attorneys. Raise your hand.
Okay. That’s my spin is rent the movie, my cousin, Vinny, what? My favorite movie of all time, it’s hysterical. But the sales application to the question is this, the premise of the movie is these two young boys are wrongly accused of a crime. And Vinny is the attorney cousin of one of them. And then, but it was his first trial ever.
And it was in another state. I think it was Mississippi, I think, or some other state in south Alabama. And. So at first blush, she was making some mistakes. He looked silly and he’s a New Yorker with an accent. It’s a comedy, but there’s a scene there where the other attorney does a bad job. And then Vinny does a good job.
And one of the two defendants says you’re fired to his attorney, I want him to represent. So to answer your question, I think that you want to get to where people say, I want you to help me get this property sold with conviction and maybe not even know why, because you look so professional. I don’t think it has to do with your track record.
It has to do with your demeanor, your systems, your confidence, it’s the whole package. And frankly, that one’s. I use social media. I don’t ask attorneys to refer me business. I would never ask them for referrals, but they see me all the time with social media have a YouTube channel. I posted on LinkedIn, Facebook.
They see me in court. They see me at the bar association events. I’m not going to the mixture of ants. I’m going to professionalism. And so I think, and then I make an effort to reach out to them when I’m on a real estate deal. And there’s an attorney they see the names may know, of course, I call them, I don’t need to call them.
I could email them or you can text them, but I would want to talk to him on the phone. So I make that extra phone call. So to answer your question, I don’t have a specific thing, but I would just say marketing is about getting people to want to work with you where they say, I want you. And you got to do whatever you have to do to get to that point with people.
Does that help a little bit? Yeah. But see the movie, I’ll tell you this 90% of the attorneys you ask them, what’s the best movie on the practice of law. They’ll say my cousin Vinny. So if you want to, I’m just going to attorneys and their way of thinking. You have to see that movie. Plus, it’s hysterical.
Tips for vacant property in probate and finding vacant insurance providers
Okay. So I have this issue that I’m currently dealing with. I have a client that needs vacant insurance in all reality. This is the first time I’d ever had somebody that needs vacant insurance. My father is an insurance agent and he suggested that I suggest to my clients to attempt to pay off the balance while they’re going through probate so they can keep the regular policy.
So they don’t have to pay for vacant insurance. And it’s always worked, but now I can’t find anybody to write this lady vacant insurance. Nobody will call me back. Nobody will call her back. They’re by far, my family is in the insurance industry. They’re telling me it’s because it’s not profitable and it’s a headache.
Does anybody have any nationwide companies that they know that we’ll write somebody, some vacant insurance? I’m a real estate investor and I’m always buying properties and they’re vacant and always getting insured. I have a, uh, an insurance agent that he’s also an investor, so he knows that.
Where are you located, Georgia. Okay. Maybe he can help you. Yeah, that’d be awesome. I’m in the Facebook group. I’ll put a post on there and just respond on the post. If anybody. And or if anybody has any ideas, that would be great too. Okay. I believe I have one also. I can’t say that I’ve used him for out-of-state use it locally, but he pitched, I was at an event on Sunday and he was talking about how his, he has two businesses.
He’s a farmer’s agent and he’s outside far mers book and he is outside farmer’s book is all about real estate investors. And he does a national I’m actually interviewing him next week. So. But if everyone has one and somebody else did get the info, the chatbox, we’ll put it on the Facebook group and show the group.
That’s why we have these things is to share these best practices and work together. That’s fantastic. Real quickly for your Stephanie? I don’t necessarily. Well, I do have someone that I spoke with today that agrees to write locally. I don’t know if they’re going to write out of state. However, she mentioned to me that a way to circumvent the need for vacant home insurance or occupied home insurance used to have the property checked on monthly. So some insurance companies are now requiring that there’s essentially a home watch, or a, I mean, well, property management, but home watch companies in Florida are not necessarily property managers because they don’t have to be licensed.
They get insured to check on the property, but they don’t have to be licensed. So she said that the way to circumvent the high cost is to have the property checked on monthly. So I’m going to start informing people of that and connecting them with her. But that’s a way to probably add some value to, to the families because it’ll be about, I dunno, in Florida, they’re about 40, 50 bucks per visit or whatever, but the vacant home insurance is quadruple that, so it might save them some money and. Short-term or long-term, it doesn’t matter if they keep the property, but it’s not occupied or rented. It stays vacant while they go on through whatever they go through.
It’ll give them some peace of mind that the property won’t lose anything, if something’s damaged or whatever, they’re not going to be punished for that. That’s my thought. That’s my, one of them, definitely one of the best value adds for out of state and for attorneys over properties where their customers are state or client is visiting the property.
I work for a large company where I can pay somebody per hour to go drive a property, knock on the door, come who’s, there should be pictures. And I probably have one of those big done a week or two of those a week as part of my lead generation and differentiation with attorneys.
Navigating probate situations: Treasurer’s deeds, skiptracing missing heirs, and no wills.
Dave Gwinn, I saw your hand up.
Hey. Yeah. Thanks, Bill appreciate it. I would also want to mention real quick, if the house is vacant and it doesn’t have coverage in the current policy, Be careful because if it’s vacant. Even if you have someone show up, they still might not cover the claim if there were to be a loss.
So just be careful there. And my, I got a deal I’ve been working on here and it’s in the realm, but not a true probate per se. But an interesting one that you’d come across similar circumstances, I think in this niche market that we’re all in. So I’m an investor and came across a deal with it’s funny, there was a tax lien that was redeemed for the property.
The treasurer’s deed was issued. It was then voided because there’s a Colorado state statute that says that you know, up to nine years the owner, if they were disabled at the time, it can revert to the owner, so it wound up the treasurer’s deed was voided. However, she is now in an assisted living situation with no other assets.
And I think Medicaid’s paying the bill sort of. Soon as that ownership comes back into her name, it’s going to get fouled up by Medicaid. It’s my understanding. And so I’m just trying to, if anybody has got some ideas, having been through anything similar, or. How that might work. It’s a rundown vacant house.
That’s, hasn’t been occupied for 10 years or something. Lots of property. So you need an attorney experienced in those Colorado laws, but just to give you some ideas, if the property is not reverted yet. The title is not currently in her name. I don’t know what the process is in California. You have to file a motion to take it.
They’ll just hand you back the property deeds. Oh, we’re sorry. It’s your’s now, it’s a right to exercise and redeem the property. And so her state might waive the right in exchange for some money going to trust or some family members, something. But in California, where we have the right of redemption.
You don’t just automatically get it back. You have the right to redeem, but you have to file the documents to do that. And you can choose not to, and you can choose not to. And at the same time, you’re compensated for choosing not to take that’s a little different than a redemption cause this, they filed suit to void the treasurer’s deed.
Who did, who. Her family, her estate. So then they don’t, they have any, they must have a game plan for this. They did this for some reason. Yeah. I don’t understand why it wasn’t already, cause she’s been in assisted living, before it was taken out of her name and she doesn’t have any other assets so that I found interesting.
They didn’t already cause she’s been in the assisted living and then it went through the whole tax treasurer’s deed issued and then subsequently voided, and by voiding the treasurer’s deed it goes back to the ownership as if the treasurer’s deed never happened. So, not all attorneys, but I would say too many of them I think are focused on getting paid for activity and not.
And I’m in the results business. People pay me to get houses sold and get the money in their pocket. So I don’t know either the attorney may mistake or the attorney has a game plan you’re not aware of. Yeah. It’s one of those two, because why would you go to the trouble of suing to get the property back if you don’t benefit from it, you just spending attorneys fees, right. And they probably tell me if the attorney’s fees are out of pocket they’ll be net negative that because of the thing goes. So again, are you in contact with the attorney who did all that work? No. I am in contact with the power of attorney, the son.
I mean, he may have to be aware of the game plan was it might be a game plan that doesn’t involve him. I don’t know. It’s but those are the kind of things. These are the kind of things where I’ll pull documents together and send the question to an attorney that I preferred some business to. And just to kind of get, I’m just curious if you have an opinion on this and what can be done, but I think that’s kind of thing where those relationships to me are more valuable than just referrals.
They helped me get through this. Yeah. Pre probate not even, you know, a pre-death situation that you’re going to come across in this business. For sure. So, And I got one other quick one if no, one’s got their hand up for you. Go ahead. I have another one that
Someone passed away last year, long story short can’t find the will. I have found the niece and it turns out she didn’t even know that he had a daughter that passed away in 2014 and an ex-wife. And the daughter that passed away may or may not have had children.
So they would fall in front of a niece in the lineage downstream, the bloodline of heirship. I had a private investigator. She thought that he wasn’t even married or had any children. So just to. Get some ideas on that.
If anybody’s got some experience there. I mean, I deal in that space pretty regularly. You know, somebody just has to do the research and they’d be willing to go on the line once you, once, you know, somebody is entitled, at least a portion of it. Then you kind of off any running and oftentimes what I’ll do with that is I’ll take it to an inheritance advanced company and they’ll spend some money to get an attorney and pay for a private investigator, get things done.
So, you know, it’s a complicated situation that somebody has put the time in and generally, people need some help to get that work done. So if your question is, you think there’s at least one heir but there might be several pieces at least that one heir should get started on the process.
Yeah. Yeah. And she’s, you know if there’s no will she’s put a bunch of time and money into it already. But those children would jump in front of her as I understand it. And completely, if there’s no will, I’m kind of surprised the PI couldn’t drum something up because usually at some point is she did a hell of a job with what she did.
Cause she, I couldn’t find anything through my usual channels of skip trace and she can’t find it that’s that is. Enough for a probate court. It isn’t. That’s all you need to do. You’ve got to be progressive. And they said we’ve exhausted all effort and we won’t find anything. That’s usually proof enough to say that there’s nothing else I move forward.
The other thing is in California, that the CICA applied to be the personal presenter as administrator and get paid. Go to the other heirs and say, Hey, I might be able to take some money out of this for you for, okay. Would you support me being the petitioner? I’ve already done some work and I can get this thing done for you.
And they might say, yeah, we’re we still going to get money. We’re fine. And you’ll get our fair share. That’s if that’s the case. So sometimes that person who doesn’t know can at least file the petition. They can’t spend a lot of money on it, obviously, but they can file a petition. And if they get the other heirs to sign on with them, and that happens a lot, people have called out of state, Hey, it looks like it might be 25% heir in a property I’d like to open a probate if you sign on and you know, approved me sign onto the petition, approving me as the petitioner. Again, the details of Colorado law. I’m not very familiar with and I appreciate it. And the inheritance company might also have some input for you as well. The advance inheritance company. They’re a really good resource for these kinds of problems. For me, did you say heirs company? The advance inheritance company is a great resource for this.
Great. Great. Yeah. Thank you. I interviewed one, Paul Wilkins on my YouTube channel. Bill Gross eXp on YouTube. He’s with one of the companies, advance inheritance, but he is someone I might call on a case like this and does a good job.
I think we’re here at the witching hour unless somebody has a burning question, I think we’ll wrap up today. Sorry for the drama, with my audio and just know I did my best to check ahead of time. I’m just really, I even did sound checks, tests myself a few times, but it was really fun. Thank you for letting me fill in for Chad he’s again, working on some personal issues, asked me to fill in today.
So I appreciate you guys supporting me. It’s a great group. I appreciate you guys participating in the Facebook group. Feel free to ask questions there. Post your information about the insurance companies that will be looking for that. I texted my guy and see if he can help you out of state as well. Uh, In, in-house investors, I know he doesn’t California, but thanks for being on the call.
We do this every Tuesday, noon Pacific 3:00 PM, Eastern, and then whatever’s appropriate in the middle. This is Chad Corbett’s Probate Mastermind alumni group. So look forward to seeing you guys for next week in the future, thank you so much.
About the Author
Katt is an expert in probate marketing and helps entrepreneurs build businesses in the probate space. She is the co-founder of the Estate Professionals Mastermind podcast, which has become the most widely-shared probate real estate podcast. She also writes training content for ProbateMastery.com and a weekly LinkedIn newsletter followed by over 9000 professionals. You can reach her on Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.