When they say...

“Its already been taken care of.”
I have quite a few people say this, asking them about the foreclosure status of their homes. I have to wonder in the back of my mind what that means. Are they again current on their payments? Or are they already working with another investor? etc. Is there a polite way to find out what that means without being too nosey/pushy?


It means they aren’t going to do business with you.

And yes it is a bit pushy to be inquiring into their financial details after they have politely told you to buzz off.

As to what it really means, it could mean 100 things. Maybe they paid the mortgage curent because: Their mother bailed them out. They refinanced, they sold their antique hutch, they won a lottery. they revceived a large christmas bonus.

Or maybe they managed to sell it.

There are a lot of houses that go into pre-foreclosure that never make it through the foreclosure process. Some people skate until they get a good scare and sometimes they figure out where to get the money from when the bank stops ignoring their non-paynment and finally gives them the foreclosure notice (big similarity to tenants, by the way. They often figure out how to pay after they receive their eviction notice)

^ Very well said ‘baby potato piece’.

The " It’s already been taken care of" response is the reason I quit knocking on doors. :smile

dr_white: What I would do is track them to see what happens. Research title after a period of time to see if the foreclosure completed - or if they refied, sold, etc. That way you’ll have a better idea if “its taken care of” is genuine or merely dismissive because they don’t want to face up to their problems. I suspect the latter in most cases.

ATCO (All Ready Taken Care Of) I love to mark this down on their client sheet. Almost all of the ATCO’s end up for sale at the court house.

I still do a lot of door knocking although with the incredible increase in foreclosures here in Florida I have cut back. I still knock on homes with good equity or ones I feel would be a good short sale.

ATCO can mean any number of things. It can mean that they really have taken care of it and gotten a forbearance or loan modification. It can mean that they have brought it current but it most likely means that they are embarrassed to tell you that they have not done anything.

My conversation usually goes something like this:

Wow. You have it taken care of. That’s great. Most people I speak with in your situation have not done anything. (Next ask an open ended question.) Did you do a forbearance agreement or a loan modification?

This will sometimes open them up because they generally have no idea what either one of these are. The general idea is to complement them on being resourceful and actually doing something and then asking open ended questions to get them to talk with you about what is really happening.

You shouldn’t get discouraged because you know going in that 1/2 or more of everyone you talk to will tell you ATCO. Plan ahead and create a mindset that you are going to deal with it.