My Choice For Getting Probate Leads

ChoiceLeadProbate Monday #3 – Update

I did some thinking last night so I could weigh the benefits of going to the court house and pulling the probate leads versus buying them from a probate leads source.   It wasn’t an easy decision, but I remembered what a few of my fellow investor friends (J.P., Shae and Jason) told me…Just make a Decision and go for it!

So that is what I did and chose to buy the leads from USProbateLeads.com for my county.   Just for comparison’s sake, let me break down the advantages/disadvantages of each.

Court House

Advantages

  • Won’t cost me a penny (outside of gas)
  • I can get as many leads as I want
  • I can go back in time as far as I want
  • I would learn the process of pulling the leads so I can train someone else to do it later

Disadvantages

  • Would take up valuable time
  • Because of my work schedule and the courthouse hours I would have only 1 hour, right after work, per week to actually pull the records. (until I could train someone else)

Buying Leads (from UsProbateLeads.com)

Advantages

  • Get the leads delivered to my email
  • Will save valuable time
  • List will be in CSV format so I can merge it directly into mail merge program (MS Word)

Disadvantages

  • Costing me $100 a month
  • Not sure of the quality of the leads just yet

My Reasoning

After listing the pros and cons of each, it was pretty simple for me to pick actually.  I just didn’t have the time to go to the court house.  I get out of work at 4:30pm and the records office closes at 6:30pm on wednesday (4:30pm all other days).  It would take me 1 hour to get there from work, not including traffic.  After an hour of road rage, I’d be bursting into the records office all sweaty and disheveled.  Probably not make any friends with the fine employees that work there.  Plus I’d be pushing for every second I could, inevitably earning me the nickname “the asshole who makes us stay late”.   So in reality, my only choice at this time was to pay for the leads.  What do you think?

Anyway….I have off of work the Friday after Thanksgiving (hopefully the records office is open) and I’ll take that opportunity to go down to the court house and compare the list of leads to what is in the courthouse records.   This will help me accomplish two things…

  1. Check the validity of the bought list
  2. See exactly how the probate files work and where the information is pulled from to create a list

So how is everyone else getting there list?

Here is how the information will look like from UsProbateLeads.com

About Scott Costello

Comments

  1. Good Stuff. I like your plan. This nice part about the leads is no contract. If you find a better alternative you simply stop buying the leads. I'm planning on camparing what I get to what I find myself as well.

    I'm actually running into the issue now of finding out whether they owned real property. My county assesor website only lists parcel number address. I cannot search by name. Hope you have a better search option on your end and way to verify which John Smith actually owns that property.

    Jason

  2. I'm proud of you for making a quick decision because for decisiveness is so critical for success (and for what its worth, I think you made the right one)! Go Scotty!

  3. Pardon the typo :-) Wish I could edit my comments! Have a great Friday!

  4. Provided your work situation I think you made the right decision. Plus, I think it's a fabulous idea to go on your day off and check the validity of the leads you are purchasing.

    For probates, I go directly to the courthouse. But I don't have a full-time job either :-) I haven't been lately but I'm contemplating whether I want to go or not. Should I concentrate completely on wholesaling reo's from the mls and from getting deals with bandits? or Should I also throw probates into the mix to wholesale? They only cost me a lil extra in gas and postage………and of course, time, which I have plenty of. Not sure…perhaps I should do a pro/con list too.

  5. strugglinginvestor says:

    My County does indeed have a search by Name option which will be very useful for sure. Could you look up “John Smith's” mortgages or something like that?

  6. strugglinginvestor says:

    Thanks Shae. Making quick decisions like that really help you move forward and lowers anxiety (at least for now)

  7. strugglinginvestor says:

    don't worry about the typo, I spell so badly that I didn't even notice any typos in your last comment. In fact I still can't find it…LOL

  8. strugglinginvestor says:

    Carey,

    If you were to follow my plan of attack, I would just pick one road to go down for now. Become an expert on one of them, know it well enough where you can write an eBook like Steph and can do it with your eyes closed before branching off.

    It doesn't sound like much work to throw probates into the mix, but nothing is as straight forward as it appears and it'll take time away from your REO's.

    That is just my view because of my limited time. You might be able to handle both very well :) Just something for you to think about.

  9. I'm proud of you for making a quick decision because for decisiveness is so critical for success (and for what its worth, I think you made the right one)! Go Scotty!

  10. Pardon the typo :-) Wish I could edit my comments! Have a great Friday!

  11. Provided your work situation I think you made the right decision. Plus, I think it's a fabulous idea to go on your day off and check the validity of the leads you are purchasing.

    For probates, I go directly to the courthouse. But I don't have a full-time job either :-) I haven't been lately but I'm contemplating whether I want to go or not. Should I concentrate completely on wholesaling reo's from the mls and from getting deals with bandits? or Should I also throw probates into the mix to wholesale? They only cost me a lil extra in gas and postage………and of course, time, which I have plenty of. Not sure…perhaps I should do a pro/con list too.

  12. strugglinginvestor says:

    My County does indeed have a search by Name option which will be very useful for sure. Could you look up “John Smith's” mortgages or something like that?

  13. strugglinginvestor says:

    Thanks Shae. Making quick decisions like that really help you move forward and lowers anxiety (at least for now)

  14. strugglinginvestor says:

    don't worry about the typo, I spell so badly that I didn't even notice any typos in your last comment. In fact I still can't find it…LOL

  15. strugglinginvestor says:

    Carey,

    If you were to follow my plan of attack, I would just pick one road to go down for now. Become an expert on one of them, know it well enough where you can write an eBook like Steph and can do it with your eyes closed before branching off.

    It doesn't sound like much work to throw probates into the mix, but nothing is as straight forward as it appears and it'll take time away from your REO's.

    That is just my view because of my limited time. You might be able to handle both very well :) Just something for you to think about.

  16. atchutneelam says:

    Scott, sources, advantages and disadvantages of each sources are well present.

  17. strugglinginvestor says:

    Thanks atchut. Enjoying your comments, keep them coming

  18. jonathanCA says:

    hey scott,
    I researched usprobateleads.com for Los Angeles and found that they did not have anyone at the courthouses in LA. It took them4 weeks to tell me they could not provide leads and another 2 weeks to refund me my $75. As for going to the courts, I like wednesday's around lunchtime. In CA court houses are cutting back on staff and hours, so whatever time is left is used by same amount of people. If I'm luck I walk away with 10 leads after 2 hours at courthouse. I did all the research to figure out a better way, which ultimately I did and turned it into a directory listing. After establishing solid relationships with LA and Orange County courts, I now have a small team that feeds me probate filings every week and I make them all available on my site for those two counties.

  19. strugglinginvestor says:

    I have found they are a little slow in responding to questions or just general support. It took me a month to get a refund from an errant payment.

    How much do you charge for seeing the leads on your site?

  20. it's free to see the lead info. we show all the salient info except for for the address, PR and attorney info. Once you buy a lead you get all the info. you can click on our product index and look around.
    http://www.getprobateleads.com/pindex.asp
    If you are interested I can set you for membership for $1 the first month, plus the $4.95 per lead. After the first month your monthly membership goes to $49 per month. Every monday we have 50% off specials for 24 hours to kickstart your week. If you want exclusive access to a lead, just buy all 3 copies.
    Lemme know if you, or someone you know, might benefit from this.

  21. strugglinginvestor says:

    Sounds like a reasonable priced service. If I find someone who is looking for probate leads in your area I'll send them your way.

  22. Probateinvesting says:

    I found that Jellybean Services, their website is http://www.jellybeanservices.com is a good source for Probate leads. They don't charge a service fee, you get whatever you request, and the information is not resold. It comes in a CSV format so that you can mail-merge into your letter, or they can send the letters for you. Their cost per lead is between $1.50-$2 each depending on how many you order. They only charge you for whatever leads that you order and continue sending them to you until the order has been filled. They also reserve the county that you request from them, and will not provide to any competitors.

  23. Another company you might want to try is Wolfgang Research. They are actually networked with JBS (JellyBean Services) and other court research companies – all of which have about the same rates, but they don’t necessarily cover the same areas. They typically don’t resell their data either from what I have found. I’ve been ordering from them for about a year now and when I expanded to counties they didn’t cover, they quickly contacted other teams and were able to supply the new areas I wanted.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks for the suggestions Director. I have yet to check out any of those two services but will definitely in the future.

    • Does Wolfgang Research have a website or contact t#? Do they operate in Canada?

      • I’ve yet to actually find more information about Wolfgang research. You may want to contact Director for more information. Try clicking on his name and see if you can find some contact information on his site.

  24. Does anyone have a good Ontario Canadian Probate lead source or websites?

  25. ProbateInvest2day says:

    Wolfgang Research has been a lifesaver for me and probate records. I don’t think they deal in Canada, but might be willing to expand – never hurts to ask. I tried using JBS (which is a company separate from Jellybean Services now kinda) and couldn’t get responses from them for my area. The two people at Wolfgang Research had my fresh leads in my hands by the end of the week. My courts are a pain to try to research the data, so I much rather pay someone to do it. I asked Wolfgang Research what their secret was and was told a plate of cookies on a regular basis and good professional rapport with the Clerks. Whatever they do, it works !

  26. Just came across this discussion and was wondering
    if there was any updated news I am thinking of using
    Wolfgang Research since it was commented earlier
    that usprobateleads does not provide service to CA.
    Any news out there in the world of probate leads?

    • Hey Chet, thanks for the question. In the end my partner and I couldn’t find a service that would give us probate leads reliably that we could trust. So we pulled them ourselves from the courthouse. It’s a bit of a hassle but we knew the leads were good and fresh.

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