Stories of squatters taking over homes and trying to lay claim to them are making it into the news at a rapidly increasing rate. Some of these squatters have even gone as far as to set up websites encouraging others to follow suit and take over a large number of properties from Texas to Georgia. Clearly, this has serious consequences for those in the real estate investing business…
Under ‘adverse possession’ laws these squatters are wreaking havoc on real estate investing company’s plans, causing banks and lenders enormous amounts of frustration, angering neighbors who worked hard to pay for their homes and even victimizing homeowners who are away on extended trips.
Real estate investing pros can’t afford to ignore this growing problem. Acquiring properties which have ongoing title disputes and unwanted occupants can be expensive and crash your cash flow. This makes it absolutely essential to execute your closing day walk-throughs or face potential losses instead of profits from flipping houses. Even after you close your vacant investment properties are prime targets.
So what should real estate investing pros be doing to fight back? This is a great opportunity to collaborate with and build relationships with other investors by watching out for each others properties as well as differentiating your real estate investing company form the competition. Let buyers, especially end investors know exactly what you are doing to prevent this from happening on your homes to make the houses you are flipping more attractive.
Analyze what actions you can take to beef up your security measures and conduct random site inspections. This doesn’t have to cost a ton of money and if anything will save you big time. Keyless locks and outsourcing inspections can be very affordable and actually be combined with your current property management efforts to enhance them and shave overhead.