Finding Stolen Cars: Your New Next Best Job!

You say that camping blog you started isn’t doing much? Or you just got robbed at your Stop and Go cashier’s job? We’ve got a great new job for you car enthusiasts to talk about; finding stolen cars and trucks. Yes, this could be your big break.

Stolen cars happen every day, every way

A carjacker attempts to steal a car, when police recover it, the victim will need to pay to get it back.
A carjacker breaks into a vehicle | Getty

Everywhere and every day cars and trucks get stolen. But you can be the one who helps find those stolen vehicles like this guy in Portland, Oregon. Unfortunately, he does it in his spare time. It’s a hobby. But you enterprising MotorBiscuit readers can figure out a way to parlay the idea into a job. Seriously.

Portland resident Nick Haas has a friend who lost his motorcycle to theft. He wanted to help and started his search. He recovered the bike, and the chase and intrigue took over. Since last September he has recovered 52 vehicles. It’s sort of like a Dog the Bounty Hunter thing, but without the monetary reward. At least, so far. 

He has honed his skills for spotting stolen cars. According to KPTV Portland, he finds about one a week. The range of conditions found ranges from intact, to some damaged, while others have been stripped of parts. “Almost every morning, I was finding a car or a bike on my way down to the shop,” he told KPTV. “Sometimes it’s as simple as driving through homeless camps, sometimes I’m looking on Facebook and saying OK, this guy’s missing his Ford F Series.”

Finding stolen cars has its hazards

Car theft
Police duty belt | Getty

There are certain downsides to these capers; besides not getting paid. One time he had a knife pulled on him. Someone tried to shoot him another time. Then there was the time the thieves almost ran him over. So far, he has escaped any injury. 

If you are more of a good samaritan-type of person, you could consider doing what Haas plans on doing. He wants to start a non-profit organization that helps Portland recover stolen vehicles.

 “Seeing the look on the owner’s face the first time they see their missing car or motorcycle, whatever the vehicle was. That moment is why I do it. That’s worth the risk, putting myself out there, to go out there and find it just to have these people at that moment being reunited with their vehicle,” says Haas. “By my standards, I don’t consider myself a hero at any point. There’s faith and hope in humanity being restored by the actions of strangers, and I think that’s the beautiful aspect of this whole situation.”

Maybe this isn’t such a good idea?

Car theft
There are lots of cars and trucks to steal | Getty

Haas has a point. You can try to profit from others’ losses or help them. Some would argue that finding their stolen property is worth the monetary cost. We won’t argue one way or the other. But if you’ve got some spare time, this sounds a lot better than playing Wordle or watching reruns of the Simpsons. Not that those are bad things, mind you. 

He advises installing a tracking device or a very loud alarm are the best methods to avoid car theft.

RELATED: Should You Have to Pay to Get Your Stolen Car Back?