Every Condo and Homeowners Association have owners who are either habitually delinquent or have stopped paying entirely. What can be done to recover these delinquent condo and HOA maintenance Fees? Can your management company do this job? Must you engage a lawyer to collect for your condo or HOA? In this, the first of a series of articles we are going to discuss the benefits of using a licensed collection agency to collect these delinquent HOA and Condo Maintenance fees. Today we will be discussing an important tool in the collection agencies bag of tools and that is “SKIP TRACING.”
What is skip-tracing?
Skip-tracing is the process of obtaining information on individuals. Finding out important information that will enable a collections company to proceed with a collection pursuit. One of the most important things that a skip trace can reveal is if the debtor in question is alive or dead. Its one thing going after a living breathing individual, but its another going to recover money from a probate court. Another important thing a skip trace can tell you is if the debtor in question is actively in bankruptcy which means that you have to wait until the bankruptcy court discharges the debtor before you take action. Its important to have contact information that is up to date. The most important part of the collection process is to engage the debtor to work out a solution to pay their debt. This information is out there but only collection agencies and other licensed entities can obtain such sensitive information which may even include social security numbers.
Information is power and skip tracing is a crucial part of the debt collection process. With a skip trace you can not only find the debtor you can also locate their families, where they work, and most important of all assets they may have. Knowing if a debtor is worth pursuing is very important. You will also need to know certain information if you decide to report them to credit bureaus. This is a great benefit of working with a collections company for your condo or HOA collections.
Must I use a collection agency to find a debtor?
Your community association management company and even your lawyer are focused on many issues, and collection of condo and HOA maintenance fees are not their specialty. With a collection agency working to collect your delinquent maintenance fees for your condo and HOA you know that they are focused on that task and not Pets, Parking, People and Petunias (the four Ps in community association management). A technologically advanced collection agency will have these tools on hand and with the press of a button come up with all the information needed to make a successful collection. Its cheaper, faster, cleaner, and more effective to have a professional do this task for your condominium or HOA.
Skip-tracing is a very important tool in a collection agencies’ bag of tools. To be able not only to locate debtors but obtain important information about them will drive the action plan to recover your community association’s money. This is not a task for the amateur and its best to engage a professional company. Its key is to find a company that has the right technology and knows how to use it.