Not because I was good, but because the other guy was...not so good!
Choosing a legitimate commercial recovery agent could prove to be the difference between adding another used truck to your re-marketing department or creating another charge-off. Recently I was sent a stack of assignments to locate and recover. Six tandem axle tractors, four reefer trailers, two rubber tire loaders, an excavator and two dump trucks. 15 assignments, all different debtors. These assignments were part of a commercial portfolio recently purchased by my new client. All were charged off assets, all previously worked by other repossession agents. "Pennies on the dollar," the client had said. "Probably never find them". I knew I would have to jump head first into these files, using everything I have learned in my 30 years of repossessing commercial accounts. After the first few days working the stack of cold cases, I was hit with a startling realization. These assignments were not really difficult to locate. In fact, after a about 12-14 days, we had recovered all but the reefer trailers. What I had learned was more than alarming. The assignments were simply never properly worked. Agents who had worked the assignments before they were thrust onto my desk were not paid enough to prioritize the task. After the repossessor drove past a couple addresses, the client was told the asset could not be located. In many instances, the second and third repossessor on the assignment did the same "checked address, no show". To make matters worse, inexperienced collection department staffers or assignment forwarders believed the collateral was long gone and the accounts were charged off. Here I thought my special skills and years of experience had yielded to my success when the real credit was because of the diminished capacity and the absence of quality of service by the repossessors who had worked the assignment before me. If the assignments were sent to a qualified commercial repossessor, many assets could be recovered in the first 15 days. I guess I'm not so special after all.