Enough is Enough

EDITORIAL

What is going on in the repossession industry?  For years we have been pushed around, dictated to, coerced by false information, and downright bullied.  But Enough is Enough!

The Council of Repossession Professionals (CORP) can no longer stand back and discuss the issues.  We have to get out front and disseminate all the information we can to you, the hardworking, professional recovery agents and owners, with a belief that you can make informed decisions.

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4 thoughts on “Enough is Enough

  1. Concerned, you raise some good points but beware. While there are associations out there that want the greater good most that I have seen are too small to flip a coin and in today’s world you know what happens if you take the time to roll it over. I am just an “employee” at a 3 person mom and pop repossession company, not a towing company. The owner and myself work on the street and his wife takes care of the paperwork end. My Boss is in his early 60s and I am in my late 40s so we have seen this world of ours change greatly, good and bad. Any association is there to provide a voice although how collective that voice is, is what scares me about that type of voice. In this world of texting and emailing, the personality of our voices are lost to the perceived tones of the reader.

    We have been to “towing” association meetings and we can see how they are working against us and trying to defeat the laws that are here for their personal gain. Yes, it sucks following these laws that will net a or multiple $750.00 fines faster that you can blink. While there is an advantage to being “permitted” by the state of Illinois, the fact remains that the checks and balances come from US, the street workers. We have to formally file complaints against our “own” to make this system work. Who has time for this? Detailed pictures, times, locations and reports. I’m supposed to be working my job not doing the ICCs job. We catch tow companies preforming illegal repossessions along with others that believe they have found loop holes. Now, you say that I should have an advantage in my area but until the people get caught in their “loopholes” we still look like the overpriced arses. All because of what I stated in the original post, they are cheaper and people will overlook the law to play this game. We don’t and that is not the job we perform. We are by the book, to the knowledge we have of the book, which is common sense. There is only 2 companies located in my city, One is or was a franchised repo company. Yes they are all the rage here. Open a repo company then find towing companies in other areas to use your name. get them to get a managers license and get an employee and you are in business operating under the home office’s ICC number. Now enter legal issues with using tow trucks and people that bear no name of the repo company nor do their trucks bear the correct ICC number for use doing repos and I can bet their insurance companies have no clue nor are they carrying wrongful repossession. Now I bring that up because as the state sees them as legal repossession companies, it is fact that they are just towing companies. They have a stronger collection of voices and they clearly think they can mix both businesses, while hiding the repossession side. They have an association to help them lobby for their rights we have a small local voice that people don’t listen to. The financial customers are either local or are still self regulated enough to have to do the right thing. Then you have the buy here and payday loans that want their repos done right so as to not draw attention to themselves but yet they want discounts. I know we all have problems and choices to make. It comes down to how many choices do you make and still keep overhead paid for? None of us got into this business to be a not for profit, yet companies still accept the worst terms to try to get by, There are tough choices at every turn. Per capita I am working in what the FBI calls one of the worst cities. It doesn’t factor into pay. Regulated and unregulated under one roof will always have different goals, how does an association move forward at full speed without crushing one? Yes, I’ll stick with my original statement, they are training people to crush both of us. Whether that is their goal or not. Riots start by gathering a common cause then exciting a few who in turn excite more until it is all out of hand. We have seen this on TV, people destroying their own neighborhoods all because some got exited and the devious few pushed them to do what they normally would not. Band wagons are very dangerous and carry a very real weight. By the way, reform is the same process only correctly organized and executed.

  2. Both previous comments have made excellent points in my view. However, I cannot accept their attacks on the associations as a whole. Sure there have been some association leaders that have focused more on the “number of members” in their association as priority over actually doing something proactive for the members themselves. I do not find this article as few described as whining at all. I see opportunity that maybe someone, somewhere, might actually be standing up and trying to make a positive change, maybe small, but still a change.

    I have turned down a lot of work because these new contracts offer no room for profitability (which of course the lenders/forwarders don’t care about). However, I don’t see the state of our industry is reflective of the associations at all. I do see that the state of our industry is directly the result of the individual agencies poor choices.

    Agencies have continued to not heed the information being provided by the associations and/or the CORP for that matter, for many years. Associations have continued to seek for better fees, contracts, etc. But the individual members themselves are the ones to make their own choices. How many agencies chose to sign the two worst contracts from two of the largest lenders late last year and early this year. Over 95% did. And now one of them left the direct relationship and went to 6 of the lowest paying forwarders out there. Instead of those same agents now refusing to do the work, they now are choosing to continue the work at a lower fee. So how is this any groups fault, it is not, it’s the agencies/owners fault.

    I see this article as yet another attempt at providing information to the industry. Until we have agencies willing to make the hard choice of refusal of work, then nothing will get better.

    And Tim, if you work in Illinois, then you have seen most of the repossession companies fall by the wayside. You are sitting on a great problem. This for you then should be easy economics of supply v demand. Less agencies to work leads to better negotiating at the table. And for some reason if you don’t get want your heart desires in the contract and all the work goes to one of your competitors, don’t be mad. Let your competitors take on all the extra work that pays little or nothing. To be able to service those accounts, they will have to expand or risk failing. By expanding, they now risk increased overhead as well as increased risk. In the long run, you win. Wait until they have a bad repo, or can no longer afford or sustain the increased cost of doing business. Step back, take a breath, because from my view, you are sitting in a great position.

    For your 5 counties in Illinois, why are not all the agencies standing strong and refusing to accept bad deals? Let me guess, because it is easier to complain about them, versus choosing to refuse them. Why not make to tough choice. A great repossession company can always lose non-profitable work and still be just fine. That gives them extra time and resources to work better paying (or more fair) contractual obligations with their other clients. And over the course of a year, leads to more profitability with less exposure to risk.

  3. I agree with Gerald. Enough is enough? Really! A very sad thing that this is written in the form of every whiny protestor type video that is out there on the boob tube. I am so sick of people protesting/whining and then they sit back and b***h because someone isn’t making what they want happen. Everyone is a racist, bigot, bully or whatever name comes to mind for that day. People had a legit gripe about cities letting Walmart in and how that would greatly reduce competition and basically run mom and pop businesses out. Well it happened but do you see rights activists, news stations, political or civil companies actively suing Walmart and city municipalities to get back the lives that were taken from them? No you don’t, they don’t care and either do most that say they are here to help US. Truth is, if you are a locksmith and your neighbor becomes a locksmith that charges half what you do. You will be put out of the locksmith business, this is plain and simple for the real world to see, no matter how much of an investment you have. If I have no overhead and I call myself a ______, fill in the blank, it costs me nothing to be a ______. People will buy from me because I am cheaper and people will look the other way when I don’t follow the rules because I am so much cheaper. This is nothing new to manufacturing or to the service industries. If McDonalds owned all McDonalds, there would not be a $1.00 menu but they are in control, you rent the name, follow the rules and buy the product from them, pay your yearly to stay the franchise you bought. They define how you run your business and they have made themselves and a lot of owners a lot of money, now today they don’t let you make as much money because they are comfortable and don’t give a damn that you struggle. HMMM these companies started running their businesses like our industries second hand companies that help the financial side keep money and short US, they too have found it is pretty cushy to take and not give.

    My point to clearly state that if CORP or any other “association” stands behind this weakly written cry baby type “stuff” then I hope they just turn tail and fail!. You can’t have an association that has to cater to an unregulated industry and a regulated industry, it just will not work. While the unregulated act like they are being treated unfair because they want to do and go wherever they desire without any regulations to restrict them or they wish to act like the ones that have made your news posts. Now enter the regulated industry, they can see how off set it is to be regulated and how the unregulated doesn’t care what work is left for the regulated industry. You can’t have a Joe Blow with a truck and a name, not carrying the proper overhead running around in the whiny CORP playground as you would have the regulated businesses. That Joe guy will b***h with you, raise your flags, sing your woes and ride the coattails until that day when you have made him and his business a ton of money. The problem is that when he steps off, he will continue to do what you trained him, except he will use it against US and align himself with OUR customers. He will bring the price down lower, create more “company” regulations and demand more free perks. He will call himself a Network, a Service, a Counsel for Professionals, a Forwarder, he will have seminars and great speakers and he will help enslaved the industry even more. Then one day in the near future you will accept advertising monies from him and you will sing his praises and you will b***h about everything that he says you should be b***hing about, like one piece of equipment that you are not using any longer. And just who helped push your customer’s to make it so the equipment has no use? How can I foresee this, what makes me so crazy to even suggest this, turn a blind eye theory? Scroll around this page and take care to view ads from those who are about themselves, they are here advertising and it is sitting right there staring at you and everyone you plead with to join your causes, come to your expos, join groups. When these are the ones that came in and took your slice of the pie. Remember how they negotiated away everything you wrote against in this article and other articles? Yet there they are paying for you to advertise them to us. These companies whether designed to or not, are to blame. Anytime a business unit can source a large number of orders or a large dollar amount to a collective unit, they gain negotiating power. When the Unit fails to block advances then WE get stuck. We have this now because while there are still a lot of mom and pop repossessor’s, few deal direct with their customers like they would have 20 years ago.

    The solution is not simple but to start we need to regulate the entire industry, put the industry under martial law and regulate who can work this career. And then when we start b***hing about what they took, it will not be confused with what was given to them by the industry traders, the middleman companies, so they can sit back and make more money than the guy on the street. You have talked about the $500.00 repo, well maybe for banks and credit unions but when you go sub-prime or title loan level the price should at least double that if flat fees are used. If you have to ask why, you have never spent your money chasing these accounts or watching these accounts because they know how to play the game and the regulated player feels that lost of their stake to play this game by the law and by a natural code of ethics.

    Only work one side of the fence. Lose those you held so dearly while you worked for the big financial desk, get behind us little people and find a way to help. Grab a key from a car lot and take a car in the middle of the night from a drug dealer or from a single mom, only make sure they get what they “need” out of the car first. Grab a piece of paper and go get a car without a tow truck, hmm, is that even possible. Yes, it is. Do this day after day and then rewrite your article about a key machine sitting on the work bench with no work for it. Do the job the hard way every once in a while and you will know why this editorial sounds so pathetic. You yourself broke down how it is not feasible to go into this business and you picked a key machine sitting useless on a work bench to go off on? I truly believe you could do better.

    I work 2 full time plus jobs, many work more than 80 years a week at repossessions alone, maybe not on the street but chasing social media or other useful avenues on top of street time. You will find me listed on the IL ICC web site and yes, thank you for asking, I am in one of the 5 counties in Illinois that is completely under the ICC’s rule on top of state law, county and local laws. Some will put you in jail because you don’t do a repo their way. It works to keep the undesirables out to some point but it costs our bottom line greatly. A Key Machine???

    Thank you for your time.

  4. So let me get this straight. A select group of individuals get together to form a group called “The Corp”. This is suppose to be the LEADERSHIP team that provides “the voice” that the industry so desperately needs. The problem is that this group is made up of the same individuals that run the muted associations. In the years that The Corp has existed, what has it accomplished? Nothing!! The industry is where it is due to lack of leadership and the personal hidden agendas, together with the smoke and mirrors that have become the norm. The failing continues…

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