What is Skip Tracing? Private Investigator Podcast #79


everyone this is Andrew from private

investigator advice and this is the

prime mosquito bites podcast

this is gonna be episode 79 that the

title this podcast is what is


a lot of people want to know that right

it's a word that just I don't think a

lot of people know but before we get

into that this one let you know this is

brought to you by private investigator

vice prime investigator vice has

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you so again that's it from the private

investigator advice plug there okay so

let's get into this podcast here

what is skip-tracing um

I kind of talked about this earlier I I

don't like that word it's not used a lot

other than in the private investigation

industry or the investigation industry

itself but the word itself it really

refers to locating somebody um and it's

used by people like prime investigators

bounty hunters debt collectors or just

anybody anybody who knows it in the

sandesh tree most most of the time I

don't like it because I said nobody

outside the industry knows it and I just

sounds weird to me like that just don't

just when you're talking to like a

client I'm not gonna use the word

skip-tracing to say I'm gonna try to

locate someone for you or are you

looking to locate somebody I've never

had a client go hey you skip tracer

this never happens at least not with me

so anyways so what's the skip-tracing

definition some people say the word skip

relates to someone skipping out of town

and the word trace refers to tracing or

tracking down an individual that's how

they from my research that's kind of how

the word came about when I was working

for a company one of the managers like

hey the client is tracing and I said

what do you mean the clients tracing and

he said well he's tracing down the file

like he wants to know where we are on it

and that's the only did their times I've

really heard those words and I've really

heard that word again

when regards to tracing down a file I

think that might have been that specific

managers lingo anyways when I when I

think of Skip tracer I think it's

somebody who is searching for someone

that's hard to find but that's not

necessarily the case really could just

be just finding somebody so you know

some people are easier to find than

others as you can imagine and you know

that could depend on the skill of the

investigator or you know because some

people might just be better at finding

people than other people but everybody

should know how to be a Skip tracer or

locate somebody like it's it's really

part of the job it says it's one things

you kind of have to know how to do for

various reasons if you're in

surveillance you need to make sure that


you know your person lives where they

saved the client says they live you need

to confirm these things and if they

don't live there you got to find them if

you're in claims or if you're just

trying to find someone in general for

throughout an investigation it's gonna

take those those skills to find them -

to complete the actual part of the job

so you gotta find them just to be able

to interview them and things like that

so I think in my experience you know

when you're when you're very when you

work in an assignment where it doesn't

have to be covert you don't have to do

it sneakily said a word sneakily it's a

little bit easier to find someone right

like if it doesn't require me to be

sneaky right if I can just be

straightforward it's it's it's easier to

figure things out whether things you

know anyways when you got to be sneaky

then it gets a little more a little more

harder right more difficult because

you're trying to find them out without

them know or find out where they are

without them knowing that you're trying

to find out and so that can be tricky

sometimes and that's kind of like where

the art form comes into play right like

you know you versus it being an

investigator or or even doing

surveillance and that that's an art form

finding people can be an art form as

well some of the skills it requires you

got a piece together information that's

not obviously linked right there's not

some little little trail you follow on a

nope there they are sometimes it's a web

of information you're trying to take

different pieces of information and link

them together and and let me just kind

of get into some of that the way we kind

of find people and we connect that web

of information it can come from like

sources like these like data sources

some people call them that or credit

header sources IRB Skip Smasher TLO you

can look these up on your own guys

tracers to sign up for tracers recently

this is gonna help you well first of all

like a long story short I can provide

these comprehensive reports it gives you

kind of like an address summary based

off of credit people paying bills from

another sources you know can can help

you find out where they have criminal

records and some of them provide vehicle

information it's great source every

private investigator whose is it


you know uses sources like this we also

connect information through public

sources public records rather we've we

use social media Facebook Twitter I

don't use myspace anymore but if I get

super super desperate I might refer to

myspace maybe looking for old pictures

or stuff like that obviously YouTube

some people I don't know snapchat I

don't have snapchat probably should get

it because that might be a thing for me

to be investigating musically that's

another social media source I can also

find out information from family members

a neighbor's vehicle information

pretexting I wrote a big article about

that a link to that property records

helps me criminal records court records

permits licensing you know just in just

general searching a Google online Yahoo

Bing you know you name it

so anyways any one of these sources can

help connect the dots to maybe help you

find another avenue to find out where

somebody is and so you know we're gonna

we're in a different age now even gosh

when I first started in this industry

Facebook wasn't there and so we invested

you know we found people various

different ways it wasn't Facebook though

and you know we had to piece things

together and everything was kind of a

puzzle and and there's still puzzles out

there right but I Facebook's made it

much easier for anybody to kind of kind

of find people these days but even

knowing Facebook there's still tricks to

that to find people anyways I think a

lot of it comes with time and experience

and I mean gosh even when I first

started using those databases before I

even had my own business when I was a

manager I had to kind of figure it out

on my own and how you know how learning

how reliable they all were and how they

interpret certain information and that

was me you know taking the information

then using it and and then how did that

have that case unfold and how did that

work and how did I find the person how

what that was that you know and you know

the when you can actually find that kind

of stuff out then you can kind of see

how reliable these sources are so

anyways we're gonna move on to how do

you become a Skip tracer so how do you

how do you become someone who finds

somebody that's really what that should

mean you know there's many books out

there there's you know seminars you can

participate in these can kind of help

provide some foundation for you I don't

know if there's any I don't know if

there's any formal school it's just the

skip-tracing school finding people

school I I mean I don't I don't look at

it that way I look at it if you know you

can maybe take an investigator class or

something like that to get that kind of

information I don't know and maybe there

is maybe there is maybe I just haven't

come across it but finding people is

really kind of one of those core things

that investigators have to know so maybe

you can get that through an investigator

course I haven't taken any so I can't

recommend any that might that might

teach that stuff but maybe I'll be the

guy that teaches you that maybe that's

how it'll go anyways when it comes down

to it like I was telling you earlier a

lot of it is looking at information

connecting the dots analyzing it and you

know who knows maybe you can even find a

company that's willing to training that

stuff and working for an insurance

investigation company would be a good

start because it'll kind of that's a

that would give you some practical

experience and in finding people because

you do have to do in most cases a

preliminary investigation and that

should be kind of like your beginning of

a foundation for that stuff I find the

information all the time even new

information or new ways of finding stuff

all the time so even when you when you

start to learn how to find people

there's always gonna be some new trick

right you're always gonna be somebody

who knows one extra trick more than you

and you're just gonna add that to your

repertoire into finding people but

you're always gonna be learning new

things there's always gonna be new laws

there's always be new sources there's

always be new technology and you

make sure you as an investigator our

skip-tracer you're always staying up to

date with that kind of stuff so you know

you could be good at what you do um you

know just add just to talk about a few

companies that might need scape Travis

trace them oh I'm just talking too fast

tonight so companies that might need

skipped razors would be proud

investigator companies bounty hunters

debt collabed collectors repossession

companies need skipped razors anybody

any company needing to locate somebody

could use a Skip tracer it's a person

locator now I don't know that all

skip-tracing opportunities are good ones

from what I've understand because this

isn't how always work for me but just

talking to some other people in the

industry some people are paid upon

locating an individual so people get

paid well because they're very good at

it but that really depends on how many

individuals you find right and that

could be for a debt collector sometimes

sometimes the pay isn't worth the amount

of work that you do right so you want to

keep that in mind

whatever opportunity you're given you

really need to weigh I mean you know way

the kind of job that it is and the

salary whatever it's gonna have to be

good for you it's got to work for you I

don't know every job out there that just

is specific to finding people but the

ones that I gave you or some of them

there's always gonna be some job that I

don't know about what's the job outlook

that'll be the next topic what does the

job outlook for a Skip tracer when I

wrote this article originally they said

skip-tracing industry is a mix between

bill and account collector a private

investigator and a bounty hunter and the

2015 job outlook for that for the bill

and a count collector according to the

Bureau of Labor Statistics

indicates that the median pay

yeah in 2015 was thirty four thousand

four hundred and forty dollars which is

sixteen dollars 56 cents an hour the

entry it was an entry level education to

get into it so it said there was three

hundred fifty jobs in 2014 for this type

of under this category so I mean 1656

that was a couple years ago it's

probably gone up a little bit more you

know it's just something to think about

if that's the average pay you know let's

see here

in 2015 the job outlook for a private

investigator according to the Bureau of

Labor Statistics indicates the median

pay was two thousand two thousand

fifteen was forty five thousand six

hundred ten or twenty one and ninety

three an hour there were thirty four

thousand nine hundred jobs in 2014 per

private investigators you know into this

is also an entry-level job as well

requiring the high school diploma in

most cases I haven't studied or figured

out every requirement for every state in

the United States but that's generally

the case I do know that called just just

jumper there's a quick I do know that

college education can't substitute for

experience when it comes to licensing

sometimes so anyways you know I just

jump it into this for a quick a Skip

tracer can only get so far from behind a

desk so skip tracing isn't going to be

and I hope I didn't make you think that

it was because I might have insinuated

that as I've talked to you this podcast

here but it isn't just a from behind the

desk job there's gonna be some point

where in order to find somebody there

might have there someone's gonna have to

go somewhere and and pull some records

or go to a residence and talk to

neighbors so sometimes you're gonna have

to physically be in that location and

you know maybe you hire someone to do

that or maybe you're the person doing

that but somebody's gonna have to do it

I think my last bit of advice about


and I see us a lot to everybody in this

I mean you can make a good living and I

mean there's always to be somebody's

gonna say no Andrew I made $80,000 as a

Skip tracer and I worked for a company

and if that's the case that is so

awesome I'm very happy for you but that

is not in my experience that is not like

everybody's making $80,000 it's working

for somebody as a private investigator

as a Skip tracer or whatever generally

speaking that's usually not how it goes

and I even provided some statistics for

you to kind of to back up my statement

here my biggest advice is to to take

whatever knowledge you learn so if you

do become a Skip tracer finding somebody

or prying us care who or whatever if you

are an employee for a company I would

let that be the training for you to

start something of your own at some

point and it doesn't have to be

full-time you don't have to be a prime

investigator I mean a business on her

full time you could be a part-time

business owner and you could do your

stuff on the side as you build more

knowledge and confidence and on all kind

of stuff like but you you want you do

your own thing and once you get your own

client and once you realize you're like

oh my god I just did the same thing that

I did for the company I work for on my

own and I made twice as much you're

gonna be like oh my gosh what what else

can I do on my own business right and

then you're gonna get excited about it

you're like I did the same work and made

twice as much Wow let me get serious

about this you're gonna love it so

anyways I just give you some books to

consider if you're interested in the

skip-tracing industry I always recommend

the Complete Idiot's Guide to private

investigating I read this book at the

beginning of my career and he's put out

some new editions that I haven't read


I'm sure that's updated too to today's

time like I'm assuming written by a very

intelligent smart private investing

Scott Brown don't nobody not I don't

know he's good though

anyways definitely check that book out

if you go to my resources page on the

private investigator Weiss advice

website I have a link to that it's an

affiliate link let's see here

investigators little black book still

pretty relevant if you want to different

if you just look this more like a

reference to go through and check I mean

if you want to search different things

who would you would call you'd have to

take a look at it super cheap not a big


another book is how to do a background

check I can't remember the author on

that I did read it there were a couple

nuggets in it again I'll try to link to

that in the video notes and I'll refer

you to the article as well where some of

these links are out there was another

book that I came across skips tracing

secrets I haven't read that yet anyways

I hope that kind of gives you a start

definitely you know I think one of the

cool things is and I haven't read all

the PI books out there but I'm usually

most of them aren't a big investment

especially if you get the e-book steal

the online books through Amazon I have a

Kindle Fire I've talked to guys about

this before I get a lot of books for

cheap that are that'll Kindle only books

that might have a physical book but I

can get it for like maybe the physical

books twelve bucks I get the the Kindle

book for like three bucks it's the same

darn thing I just get it on my Kindle


so anyways have I done an audible I

don't know if I've done an audible I've

done an audible plug here listen guys

since of already talking about the

Kindle on Amazon Amazon owns audible

audible is offering a three is a 30-day

free trial they're gonna give you a book

let you try it out for 30 days and if

you don't like the service you don't

like audible

books on you can listen to on your phone

books that are audible you can cancel

cancel before the 30 days is over you

don't charge you nothing you get to keep

the book find a book that's good for you

it's gonna be WWWE thats letting them

know that I sent you over there I'm an

affiliate if you decide to just do the

trial you don't have to even subscribe

if you just do the trial I will receive

the commission for you I just checking

it out so we think we thank you and I

think audible I think Amazon I think I'm

all for I just just checking it out guys

I appreciate everything this was episode


I hope this provided some information

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cool and that's it guys I guess I'm just

gonna see on the next one have a great

week and I'll talk to you later