Realtors and other real estate professionals know all too well that foreclosures had been on the rise for years. And while the overall numbers have decreased in recent years, it is still a painful reality in their industry.
The real impact isn't simply the initial foreclosure - it's the ongoing, residual effect as the process plays out over months and - in some cases - for years. At some point in the process the services of a foreclosure clean out business will be needed.
Not All Foreclosure Clean Out Firms Are Created Equal
In 2012, for example, a bank contractor cut through the secured gate at the entrance to a farm in Little Rock, Arkansas, and walked to a small house on the property. According to a police report, he then broke the lock off one of the doors and made his way inside.
The man was allegedly there on official business. It turned out that he worked in the little-known industry that maintains and inspects millions of foreclosed and abandoned homes owned by mortgage lenders. The bank responsible for the home had mistakenly thought that the home was simply an abandoned property, and the contractor had been hired to secure the building against weather and decay.
The owner of the property, a recently widowed woman, was away when the man arrived. Although she acknowledged later that she was indeed in foreclosure, the house was still very much hers and far from abandoned. This was something both the bank and the contractor failed to establish.
When the woman returned home, she was shocked to find that the doors to her house had been padlocked and her belongings ransacked. In addition, she found that a grandfather clock was missing, along with an antique gold mirror, several televisions and family photos.
Foreclosure Clean Out the Right Way
So, what does all this mean for real estate professionals?
There is still a need to clean these foreclosed properties despite the inevitable rise of questionable ventures that tout themselves as a professional "foreclosure clean out business."
A quick Google search for the phrase, "How to start a foreclosure clean out business" brought back over 370,000 hits. The myriad of "start your own business" sites found on the Internet are rife with guides and websites designed to show people how to start their own cleaning businesses for foreclosed homes. And their most common targeted prospects are banks and real estate professionals.
Too many times vendors are chosen simply based on cost. Because of the nature of the real estate business with having to invest so much up front before realizing any revenue from a sale, it is tempting to cut corners or always "go cheap". But, of course, smart Realtors and professionals resist that temptation.
This is not to say that all so-called "foreclosure clean out businesses" are dodgy or incompetent. In fact, the options available to you as a Realtor or real estate professional can be overwhelming depending on the area you are working in. However, there are a few key qualities you need to look for when choosing a professional clean out firm for your foreclosed properties.
What to Look for With a Foreclosure Clean Out Service
Here are five questions to ask when choosing a house clean out or junk hauling service:
Does the company provide free, on-site estimates for clean out and junk removal?
A quality removal firm will not give you an estimate over the phone for this type of work. They will come to your property and work with you to determine the scope and potential volume of debris that will be produced. An estimate should include all phases of the removal work including any fees for disposal.
Does the company offer both one-time and recurring debris pick-up and removal?
Larger properties and certain foreclosure situations can generate debris in amounts that may require a number of scheduled pick-ups and removal over a period of time. In addition, depending on the location of the property and the nature of the sale, periodic clean-up may be needed for aesthetic and public safety reasons because of remodeling or construction.
How quickly can the company be on-site when needed and how fast will they be in completing the job?
Since many sales are time-sensitive and often have limited windows of time to allow for house clean out and junk removal, a company offering these services should be able to respond quickly, work quickly, and complete the task within the required time frame allowed. Flexibility and efficiency are hallmarks of a truly professional house clean out firm.
Do they offer recycling and donation of items as well as disposal?
It’s one thing to pick up furniture, household debris and trash to be hauled off a local landfill. It's another thing altogether to have processes for placing usable items at local donation centers and recycling as much as possible. Junk King’s green profile and attention to recycling and donating at least 60% of all materials collected, makes the business a great house clean out service.
Will the debris be properly disposed of?
Your local agencies, as well as the Federal and State agencies, have specific requirements for the proper handling and disposal of various materials and substances. It is paramount that whoever is tasked with removing and disposing of household debris be knowledgeable in this area. Professional firms will make use of the proper disposal sites and methods, while recycling as much of the materials as possible.
Foreclosure Clean Out Service and Junk Hauling You Can Trust
Matt Verga and his wife, Maggie opened their Junk King hauling franchise in 2013. The pair operates in Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties, California. These counties could be said to be particularly “green.” Marin County is full of wide open spaces, coastal beauty, and woodland. Napa and Sonoma counties are justly famous for their vineyards and farmland. Being conscious of this beauty and being determined to be as "green" as possible, Matt works hard to ensure that recycling and reuse is a prominent aspect of his business.
Junk King was founded in 2005 to be fast, green, and customer friendly. "Junk King’s 'green model”'reduces landfill waste and reduces prices for our customers,” Verga says. In addition, the company’s commitment to charity allows the Vergas to donate items to folks in need.
Speed, Reliability and Quality Service
We understand that as a real estate professional you need your homes to be pristine and you want to be able to list them as quickly as you can. We also understand that you appreciate hassle-free services and really can’t afford to have problems with a property. And your clients have enough to deal with when selling a home, so having the chore of junk removal handled by someone else is a huge bonus.
Junk King offers fast and friendly junk hauling with an emphasis on eco-friendly practices. We recycle or donate 60% or more of the junk we collect — including renovation debris, furniture and appliances, and even clothing and personal items. Real estate ventures can proudly call Junk King their green partner for real estate junk removal.
We are insured and offer post-escrow payment. Junk King handles junk removal services for real estate professionals across the U.S. and we are the highest rated service brand in the nation. You can depend on Junk King for speed, reliability and for the peace of mind that comes with getting your property ready fast.
Our team specializes in large waste removal and trash hauling. We can be on location in mere minutes, so call us today! Our crew is fully insured and well-trained, so you can trust them to get rid of your unwanted items in a professional and courteous fashion.
One of the best things about hiring Junk King is that we recycle a much of the material we pick-up. This is proof of our commitment to being an eco-friendly removal service. If you have questions about what we do or what we believe, give us a call at (707) 744-4254.