Should you write a letter to the seller?

Local real estate agents say letters to the seller may help procure a winning bid. As the housing shortage continues, buyers have increased in their desire to stand out among the crowd of other offers. One way to do this is to attach a personal letter from the buyer to the seller about why they want to purchase the home.

“A lot of people have an emotional attachment to their homes,” Joey Jordan with Keller Williams said. “By and large, they like to know that sweet, nice people are going to buy their home. It makes them feel like they are handing the home off to someone who will care for it the way they have.”

Jordan went on to explain letters written from the buyer to the seller should include why they want to purchase the home and what makes it a good fit for their family. However, buyers should be careful about disclosing too many personal details, Jordan warned. By letting the seller know what you do for a living or other financial related details, they might get the impression that you can and should pay more for the home.

Wanda Poe with ERA Steve Cook said these letters are especially helpful in a multiple offer situation.

“It’s when a person thinks they are going to have to compete that they are inspired to write a letter about why they are the people that should own the property,” Poe said. “I just had a situation where that was done and it made a big difference. It was a family trust and the children were very impressed with the letter and the people that were going to occupy the home.”

Poe explained the letter was effective because it allowed the sellers to envision a family living in their parents’ home and taking good care of it. Since the property had land, the family had been concerned with what would be done with it. They were relieved to hear the family intended to keep horses on the property and maintain the land.

Jordan said in her experience there is a greater chance for Grayson County residents to be emotionally attached to their homes than those who live in the Metroplex.

“When I started selling real estate in Plano back in ’74, people tended to move every two to three years,” Jordan said. “But in Grayson County, people tend to buy a house and stay in it a long time, which causes them to build more attachment. As people make a lot of money selling their homes in Collin County and moving out to Grayson, this may start to change.”

Because of this, letters written to sellers in Grayson County may make more of an impact than those in other areas. Poe explained the amount of property with land in the area also makes it an ideal place for sellers to receive these letters.

“For a large piece of property like land it’s important for them to know what is going to happen to it once it’s purchased,” Poe said. “A lot of times they want it to be continued to be cared for and they care what is going to happen once it’s sold.”

Buyers that are looking for land to have animals and to participate in farming should include this in their letter. This will help them to stand apart from investors who may have intentions to divide up the land or change its use.

Letters written from the buyer to the seller may not help a low offer to be accepted but may make it more likely that an equivalent offer will stand out in the crowd. Both agents agreed it is worth the effort to try.

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