Table of Contents
Chapter 1: About The Business
You will learn what foreclosures are, why they are called REO's, about former mortgagors and tenants, cash for keys, personal property, and how it is handled. You will learn about the banks, lenders, and their representatives; how to speak their language, get, and keep their business. You will learn about the cleanouts themselves, why trash is such a liability, what it takes to get to the cleanout phase, and why. You will also learn what your customers will expect of you and what you can expect from the properties themselves.
Chapter 2: Starting Your Business
You will learn how you can turn a small amount of money, a truck or vehicle, some basic tools, and a desire to succeed into a successful money making business. You will learn how to start small, setup and structure your business, and get the forms, permits, and licenses you may need. You will learn how to effectively use subcontractors. You will learn about employees, and what you will need when and if you hire any. You will learn what insurance you will need, what to ask for, and where to get it. You will also learn what you will need for your office as well as what tools you will need in the field.
Chapter 3: The Interior Cleanout
You will learn, step by step, the correct and most efficient process to cleanout a foreclosed property, what to leave and what to dispose of, including appliances and window treatments. You will learn about usable building materials, using dumpsters, and removing carpets. You will also learn about what to do with Freon containing appliances, household hazardous wastes, liquid and special wastes, sharps, and pathogens. I will cover what is meant by broom clean versus maid service, janitorial service or sales clean, and all about quality control. I have also included a cleanout notification that you can send to your customer when this service is completed.
Chapter 4: The Interior Cleaning
You will learn, step by step, how to properly clean the foreclosed properties to get it to show at its very best for resale. I will cover how to "sweep and swipe"; with the sweep meaning "broom cleaned" and the swipe meaning the "cleaning and wiping" of the windows and fixtures. You will learn about interior safety issues, how to spot them, and what to do when you encounter them. I will cover deodorizing and the use of organic enzymes for odors, as well as pressure washing, the cleaning of severe mildew staining (aka "mold"), and the installation of dehumidifiers.
Chapter 5: The Exterior Cleanout
You will learn, step by step, how and what to cleanout on the exterior cleanup of a foreclosed property, what to leave, and what to throw away. You will learn what to do with sheds, swing sets, pools, and spas, and how to properly remove or secure them. I will cover the tarping of roofs and other items to watch out for that can damage a property. I will also teach you how to spot other exterior safety issues and what to do when you encounter them. You will also learn about abandoned vehicles, other abandoned titled items; what to do and what not to do to keep you out of trouble.
Chapter 6: Lawn And Landscaping
You will learn, step by step, how to stage the lawn and landscaping to common foreclosure specifications. I will teach you what a perimeter cut is and what that means. I will cover the cutting of the lawns, trees, bushes, and what to do and what not to do to the lawns.
Chapter 7: Dumpsters
You will learn everything you ever wanted to know about dumpsters, their proper use in this business, what a cubic yard is, and how to estimate cubic yardages. I will cover dumpster basics, estimating, loading, dumpster lingo, and how to get better prices on dumpsters. I have also included dumpster specifications, a very helpful table of cubic yardages for common household items, and easy to use formulas you will need to correctly calculate the amount of cubic yards that are in a property to correctly estimate jobs.
Chapter 8: Estimating And Bidding
You will learn everything you need to know and more, about estimating cleanout jobs, how to calculate your fixed and variable costs, and step by step instructions on how to figure out an estimate and how to bid to maximize profits. I will cover written work orders, discounts, and give you the inside secret on how banks and lenders look at these estimates for approval. I will cover before and after photos, bidding on non standard items, and the bidding of safety issues. I will go over W-9's, 1099's, lien waivers, exclusive contracts, and tell you what to watch out for so you can get paid on time. I also include two bidding documents, a job worksheet, and a worker checklist, and an invoice that you can use on all of your jobs. You will have everything you need, including all the paperwork, to bid and complete a job as well as bill it.
Chapter 9: Rekey And Securing
You will learn everything you need to know, to perform this service if you elect to offer it. I will teach you how to gain entry into vacant foreclosed properties in seconds including drilling out the locks, changing the locks, what types of locks to use and the differences between them. I will cover securing and boarding unsecure, broken, or open windows and doors. I will cover when to use padlocks, security doors, "bolt boarding", and what materials will be required. I will discuss keys and lockboxes and why it is important to leave something to hang them on and where. I will also cover the paperwork needed, how to tell if a property is vacant, and liability issues involved. I have also included a rekey notification that you can send to your customer when you complete this service and a rekey posting for the doors.
Chapter 10: Winterization
You will learn all about winterizing a foreclosed property to protect the plumbing, and sometimes the heating system as well, from freezing, if you elect to offer this service. I will cover the differences between dry and wet heat systems, things to watch out for, and what not to do. I will cover the tools that will be needed and take you step by step through a typical winterization and what will be needed and required. I will cover winterization checklists, photos, bidding needed plumbing repairs, liability, freeze damage, thawing out frozen pipes, pumping out flooded basements, and sump pumps, etc. I will cover dewinterizations and when and for what jobs you should absolutely call in a licensed plumber. I have also included a winterization notification that you can send to your customer when you complete this service, as well as a winterization warning sign you can post in the properties per common foreclosure specifications.
Chapter 11: Other Services
I will list and explain the 20 other services that you can provide that go hand in hand with everything you will be doing in this business, if you elect to offer these services, now or in the future. Likewise, I will tell you about the 7 other services I believe you should steer clear of, for liability reasons.
Chapter 12: Marketing Your Services
You will learn how to develop a marketing information sheet about your business and who to send that information to. I will tell you who the "big four" potential sources of properties are and where to contact them. I will give you multiple websites that you can log onto for free and get local potential customers names, phone numbers, fax numbers, and emails immediately. You will also get the web addresses of the top national networks you can sign up with, for a small fee, which will match your services with banks and lenders looking for cleanout contractors in your area. I will give you contact information for the mortgage companies and credit unions. I will tell you all about regional and national field service companies, how you can work with them, and give you a website that will list 52 of them that that you can sign up with immediately to get work in your area. I will list other businesses that may be looking for your services, and how you can use them as fill ins or another stream of income if you want to. We leave "no stone unturned" when it comes to giving you all the places to get the works from!
Chapter 13: Resources
Throughout the manual, I list everything you will need and where to get it, for every specific job you will do. In this section, I will list the names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses of several companies who can supply you with needed supplies specific to this business such as locks, deadbolts, deodorizer, organic enzymes, EPA approved severe mildew staining (aka "mold") killer and cleaning products, etc. You won't have to guess where you will have to go for supplies...I have included everything!
On The Lighter Side
I have also included a couple of stories in each chapter of crazy, unusual and sometimes funny things that have happened to me over the past 16 plus years in the business. I'll tell you about the crutches I find in every house, when we uncovered a weapons arsenal, unexploded mortars, nitro, gravestones, orbs, a coffin under the steps, and other unexplained weird stuff. I'll tell you about the "freezer from hell" and how absolutely foul it smelled and how I though I would never be able to get it out of a basement. How I got surrounded by the baseball bat wielding neighborhood watch one dark and snowy night and thought I was going to be killed, and how the one dog in a million that didn't bark maybe saved my life.
I'll tell you about some of the worst places we have ever done including the house where the person used 200 cups instead of a toilet, yeah number one and two. I'll tell you about the house that was completely destroyed by water due to it not being winterized and the one that 40 cats thought was a giant litter box and filled it up with you know what. I'll tell you some stories on how I lost money on some jobs and why. Finally, I'll tell you how my employees pulled a trick on me with sharps (dirty needles) and what they did-that was a classic for the ages!
So, I think you'll find the manual not only informative but entertaining as well!
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