When a car dealer or used car lot needs to obtain a vehicle back from a customer who stopped making payments, they call in a repo man. Repo work can be difficult and dangerous, since you need to find the vehicle and peacefully repossess it from someone who wants to keep his car. Tennessee does not require any type of training or licensing for those who want to be repo men; however, this job requires a specific skill set and a calm demeanor.
Learn how to run titles, skip trace—the art of finding people who have gone missing—peacefully repossess cars from people and identify repossession clients by taking an online auto repossession course (see Resources). While Tennessee does not require repo agents to receive training, this is the best way for interested people to learn all they need to know to begin working in repossession.
Call Tennessee auto repossession companies near your community using the directory at Quick Repo (see Resources). Ask to come on part-time as a repo man; let them know about your training and other skills you may possess (such as research skills or sales skills).
Begin working part-time as a repo agent. Perform title searches and other office work. Ride along with another agent on a few repossessions before you perform your first solo repossession to observe first-hand how to complete the repo process.
Take practice exams for the Tennessee commercial driver's license (see Resources). These cover everything you need to know to pass the test and obtain a learner's permit. The commercial driver's license (CDL) is required in Tennessee to operate a tow truck. You don't need to tow autos to repossess them, since you can use key codes or lock picking, notes Pimall.com. However, having a CDL makes you more valuable.
Take a training class to learn how to operate a tow truck. Use the telephone directory to find classes near you or ask fellow repo agents where they took a class. Once you feel comfortable driving the tow truck, it's time to take the exam and obtain your CDL.
Visit the Tennessee Department of Transportation office with a Social Security card, valid Tennessee driver's license, two documents providing proof of Tennessee residency (such as a utility bill, mortgage payment, vehicle title or vehicle registration) to obtain your CDL.
Advertise your repo services to banks, car dealerships, used car lots and other potential clients to transition toward having your own repossession business. Cold call or send a letter informing these clients of your skills, rate, turnaround time and professional ethics, highlighting your experience worknig for established Tennessee repo companies.
If you choose to go out on your own, do not try to take clients from your former company, since this is unethical.
Repossession work can be dangerous.