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How Does The Repo Man Find Your Car

How Does The Repo Man Find Your Car

You’ve fallen behind on your payments, and you know it’s only a matter of time before the repo man comes. Your next thought might be to try and evade him, but first you need to know:

Exactly How does the repo man find your car? I created the following visual table to help you answer this question:

How Do Repo Find Cars:

Information from LenderDetails like home/work address, references, car make/model/VIN given to repo agents
Physical SurveillanceChecking locations owner frequents like home, workplace, gym; following car when spotted
GPS TrackingDealers install devices allowing real-time location monitoring
License Plate ScanningCameras mounted on repo vehicles to automatically scan nearby plates
Public RecordsDatabases with registration info, parking violations used to aid searches
Prevention TipsKeep payments current, maintain insurance, ask lender about alternatives, voluntary surrender
How Do Repo Find Cars

Read on below, and I will teach you exactly how repo men might try to find your car.

Relevant Articles To Read:

1. Information Provided by Lenders

When auto lenders hire repossession companies to take back a car, they provide:

  • The owner’s name, home/work addresses, and personal references
  • Specific car details – make, model, year, color, VIN

With this data, agents can more easily ID vehicles and have a starting point for locating them.

2. Physical Searching Methods

Common searching tactics repo men use:

  • Checking home and work parking lots/neighborhoods
  • Following targets once spotted driving to track to other locations
  • Staking out places the debtor frequents – gym, restaurants, stores, car wash

Agents know all the hiding tricks and will expand search areas. Many have years of recovery experience.

3. Technology Tools for Tracking & Identification

  • GPS trackers: Dealers often install these tracking devices allowing real-time location viewing
  • License plate cameras: Mounted on repo vehicle dashboards scanning nearby plates
  • Public databases: Contain vehicle registration details, parking violations, tow records

This equipment and data help agents precisely identify target vehicles.

While relentless in car searches, some actions are off-limits:

  • No trespassing onto private property
  • No harassing, threatening, or using physical force
  • Can only repossess if parked on public property

But agents use hands-on measures like tow trucks to seize vehicles swiftly in permitted scenarios.

Preventing Vehicle Repossession

Preventing Repo Man From Finding Your Vehicle

Tactics Used by Debtors to Hide Cars

The most common tactics used to hide a car from repo are:

  • Parking a few blocks away from home or workplace
  • Covering the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to make it harder to identify
  • Locking the vehicle in a garage or other secure location (Probably the most effective)

To Avoid a Repo

  • Stay current on payments
  • Maintain insurance requirements
  • Seek alternative repayment options from lender if facing hardship
  • Voluntarily surrender vehicle as last resort

Even hiding a vehicle briefly only delays recovery agents who will eventually locate it using this array of hi-tech tracking and traditional surveillance tactics.

But proactive loan management keeps payments on schedule and cars protected.

Can The Repo Man Find My New Address?

Yes, if you have used your address for any bills, bank accounts, etc, the repo man and the lender will be able to see and find that new address.

Can a Repo find your Car In Another State?

Yes, repo companies will hire skip tracers and even private investigators to track people who might try leaving the state to avoid a repo.

In extreme cases, the lender will likely just go to court to have a judge compel you to turn over the car. At that point, if you still refuse, you would be in contempt of court and have bigger problems than just the repossession (In any state).

Key Takeaways

  • Repo agents get owner and vehicle details from lenders to aid in identification
  • Physical surveillance, like home stakeouts help locate parked vehicles
  • High-tech tools include GPS trackers and license plate scanning cameras
  • Public records provide additional personal data to track owners
  • Hiding briefly delays repossession, but most cars eventually get found

Sources For This Article

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Picture of Steve Momot - Author

Steve Momot - Author

Steve, a seasoned expert in the automotive industry, formerly held a car dealer license in Florida. With extensive experience spanning across car trading and mechanical work, he founded Autohitch. His mission? To guide both buyers and sellers through the intricate maze of car purchasing, ensuring a seamless and informed experience. Outside of the automotive world, Steve has a passion for fishing and capturing the beauty of nature through photography.


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