How do I Become a Foreclosure Specialist?

T. Webster

A foreclosure specialist oversees or assists in various aspects of property foreclosures. The best way to become a foreclosure specialist depends on the role you want to perform. One option is working as a customer service representative for financial institutions by communicating with clients, making collection calls or working out payment arrangements. Other foreclosure specialists serve as agents who assess properties and then market and sell them.

Homeowners may receive cash for vacating their foreclosed home.
Homeowners may receive cash for vacating their foreclosed home.

Foreclosures happen when a financial institution takes over a property after the owner defaults on a loan. Ideally, a foreclosure specialist should understand the foreclosure process and any related laws. Patience and outstanding communication skills are also important because foreclosures typically are stressful for all involved parties.

Foreclosure specialists may make collection calls or arrange a payment schedule.
Foreclosure specialists may make collection calls or arrange a payment schedule.

Being a customer service foreclosure specialist generally requires being able to work in a fast-paced environment and handle a large volume client contact via telephone and email. Depending on the company, prior customer service experience or an aptitude to quickly learn are likely to be the main requirements to become a foreclosure specialist. Leads for customer service-related positions can be found through typical job-search activities such as searching various Internet job boards while using the words “foreclosure specialist.”

Some companies are willing to offer you formalized training if you want to become a foreclosure specialist. This can include providing certification as a foreclosure specialist. A certification generally means an employee has passed the employer’s training program or a short training course.

Becoming a real estate agent who specializes in foreclosures will take considerably more time and effort. First, a real estate agent must have all required certifications or licenses. Becoming a real estate agent typically involves at least several weeks of coursework followed by an exam that must be passed to receive a license.

After becoming a real estate agent, you can begin the process of learning how to specialize in foreclosures. Consider working with a mentor to get specialized training in this area. Formalized coursework might also be available. After you become a real estate agent, your employer might be willing to train you to become a foreclosure specialist. You might not be paid during the training period, however.

To become a foreclosure specialist, you also will need to understand the various types of foreclosures as well as the financing options. Typically, there are strict rules and deadlines that must be met. The foreclosure process can be very technical and time-consuming.

Finding a mentor can jump-start your career. Working with someone likely will provide you with more knowledge than trying to learn everything on your own. If you do not know anyone in the industry and you are not already working as a full-time realtor, try finding a foreclosure specialist on your own.

One of the things you likely will learn is how to assess the condition of foreclosed property. Owners sometimes neglect or damage the home once they know it is in foreclosure and they have no chance of recovering it. People might destroy things out of frustration or spite. As a foreclosure specialist agent, it is your job to assess the property’s value, market it and quickly resell it.

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