Unique Idea For Finding Distressed Properties

I had an idea a couple weeks ago on how to find distressed properties. I got the idea when I had a woman who had received one of my postcards call me to tell me not about her own house but about a neighbor of hers that had a house that was rundown and making the value of the rest of the “nicer” houses in the area come down in value.

I thanked her for her call, and I sent postcards to the property that she told me about. Unfortunately, the house was already in the process of being sold.

It gave me the idea that instead of driving around looking for distressed properties, I could send out postcards to people with a message for them to call me if they have a house in their neighborhood that is rundown or vacant. I figured I would get a lot of calls because people are always concerned about the value of their house coming down due to other houses around it. Not many people know more about someone than their own neighbors. I’d probably get calls about houses that I would have missed had I just went driving through the area looking for them myself.

The downside is that the cost of first sending postcards to people to call me about their neighbors, and then sending postcards to those leads would be more costly than if I had just drove around and found them myself. The upside is that I would probably get more high quality leads.

What do you guys think?

Sounds good. Lets us know what type of response you get.

The reasons you’ve stated explains why I do a lot of mass marketing. Recruit the town as bird dogs! Pay the neighbors a small fee for reporting distressed properties. If you don’t have the money to implement a large scale marketing campaign, target specific neighborhoods that look promising and send everyone a letter, newsletter, or postcard. Ask a few neighbors if you can put your sign in their yards. Essentially you will go befriend the neighborhood, increase property values, and pay people fee’s.

Rundown house in your neighborhood dragging down YOUR property value? Call us now, if we buy it we’ll give you $500 cash and a free IPod!!!


Who wouldn’t call on an ad like that? They basically do nothing except making a phone call and they clean up their neighborhood and get a nice cash bonus.

I was thinking of a message along those same lines except I didn’t think the cash bonus was really necessary. I would imagine just the reward of having an ugly rundown house in the neighborhood renovated, and possibly a bothersome neighbor replaced would be enough incentive to get a lot of phone calls.

your going to get some calls yes without the cash bonus but cash is KING and you will get more willing people to call when money is involved…try one mailing with out the cash bonus if you get enough calls then forget the cash bonus

$500 is probably less than you are paying to your bird dogs right?

If you offer a finder’s fee, people who aren’t neighbors but know of a distressed property will call. A fee will give people the incentive to maybe take another route to work to find other distressed properties, not just their own neighborhood. Once those people get paid a few hundred bucks, they’ll spread the word to everyone they know and before you know it, people all over the town will call you reporting distressed properties they know of.

Bingo…instant network. :slight_smile:

Yeah I didn’t think about that. Good idea.

What an awesome idea. I want to run an add in our local penny saver too.
What do you think?

Sweet!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

i heard you make a comment on the cost of the post cards and mail
well if you already have the addresses ready
here is the cost effective way of mailing these out CHEAP

Put your post card or letter in a 10X 12in envelope and put the address on the return part of the envelope and the send to as well
NO MATTER what THAT LETTER WILL ARRIVE TO THE DESIGNATED PLACE…this is what printer cartridge refillers do …
questionable …



You just described something that was constitute mail fraud. I would imagine after doing this once you would have the US Postal Inspection Service knocking on your door. Even though the idea of the mail police sounds as intimidating as mall security, they are real Federal LE special agents.

Also a big yellow return to sender sticker on the post card doesn’t usually compliment the design.

YES - If you want a free ride to jail for not paying for stamps.

This is a GREAT thread! ;D I’m going to try this!

How much trust would you put in a company that cut a corner to save $0.20?

that’s tha approach that one can use when building so called “ant farm” (per R.Legrand)