Thursday, February 8, 2018 / by Thea Limon
How do you make your offer stand out above the rest? Write a letter to the seller! An offer doesn’t connect the seller and the buyer emotionally but a letter can. When possible buyers write about their hopes and dreams that would begin
When a buyer isn’t able to submit the highest offer, a letter is one way to shine above the other offered price. It isn’t a full proof way to secure your offer, but it does improve the chances of it being accepted or considered by the owner.
Not every home seller is going to connect to the letter, but there is always that chance that they could! There have been sellers in the past who went with a lower offer because of a letter.
You might be wondering what you should write to the homeowner. Don’t worry, we’ll help you out there! Local and experienced Realtors in Lake Arrowhead can assist buyers in what would be more specific towards your situation. We’ll get more into that later!
- Who are the buyers? Let the seller know.
When you’re starting off your letter, introduce yourself and your family. Let’s say that the buyer is a newlywed and is searching for the perfect home to raise their future children in; let the owner know that! Comment on the beautiful memories you will make at the house.
For example, “Lake Arrowhead has a rich history for me. When I was a kid, my parents brought me up here every year on vacation. We made some great memories, and I want my children to be able to say the same when they are adults. I can see us playing a board game in the front living with the fire crackling in the background or drinking hot chocolate with them in the dining room. Your house would be the perfect place to make those memories!”
Maybe the seller will think back on the time they were raising their own children in that house, linking their joy from that moment to the one you could have in the same house. Putting a name with an actual person humanizes the buyer to the seller. When they don’t know much about the buyer, they become a nameless face without any emotional impact.
Real estate is all about emotions. The way you sell and buy a property depends on what type of feeling someone has. That fact doesn’t only work for this situation but the entire process. A great example would be when a buyer is walking up to a house, and the next door neighbor’s dogs are barking up a storm, that reaction gives off a bad feeling, causing the buyers to want to look elsewhere. Use the emotions that go along with real estate to help you.
- Why do you want to buy this specific home?
What is it about this particular home that makes the buyers want to own it? Let the seller in on what aspects you love about the house. Did you walk up and fall in love with the exterior? Could you see yourself raising a family there? Was it the backyard that captured your attention? Explain why you have to have that house!
Sellers can have emotional attachments to their homes. If they know that the new owners will love it as much as they do, it could be the extra push they need to go with your offer. Tell them the reason why you don’t want to look at any other houses. Depending on your answer, they might connect even more with you.
A good example would be, “My husband and I knew that your house was just what we have been looking for when we saw the spacious backyard and living room with the wall of glass windows. We can picture watching the snow falling from those windows and playing with our children in the backyard! We want to make memories that will last us a lifetime, and we know that your house will be the perfect backdrop for those memories.”
- Flatter the sellers!
It doesn’t hurt to use flattery when the buyer describes what they love about the home! A buyer wants to be seen in a good light; complimenting the seller’s style is a good way to start. Is there a rock fireplace that you liked? Mention it in the letter. Maybe you loved the paint colors. “The design of the house is wonderful! If we get the privilege of purchasing your house, we’re planning on staying with the same paint colors!” Flattery can go a long way.
If you can tell that they took good care of their home, then it’s a great idea to note that in the letter. Tell the seller that you plan on taking care of the house in the same manner. This can help to ease their minds on how the new owner will treat the home.
Make sure to be genuine and sincere in everything that you’re saying. If not, the owner might get the impression that you’re not being completely honest in the letter. Don’t let them have a negative impression of you! Have your friends read the letter to see how they would take the comments from a seller’s perspective.
- Check your grammar and spelling!
Grammar might not seem important, but it is! When the writing is sloppy and misspelled or there are grammatical mistakes, it looks like the author didn’t take the time to go through the letter. You want the seller to get the feeling that you took the time to sit down and put some thought into what was written.
Don’t rush! Try to present yourself in the best way to give a great first impression. Even though you aren’t meeting the seller in person, it will be the first impression that they have from you directly. Some people will receive a negative preconception of a person who uses incorrect spelling and grammar. So, be sure to put your best foot forward!
- Don’t mention remodeling.
As we mentioned before, sellers can be emotionally connected to their home. If you mention that you want to remodel and change it, they might not respond well to you. Many owners want to be able to drive down the street and recognize their old house. They don’t want to see the entire exterior redone. Unfortunately for them, that isn’t their choice once they sell the property, but it’s polite not to mention any plans of that sort.
What happens if you have no plans of changing the house? Tell them that! That could be a huge advantage for you. Inform the seller that you don’t want to change or do any remodeling to the home. That you love it the way, it is! Another idea is to offer them the chance to embrace being nostalgic by welcoming them to come back to see it.
- Recap and sign off properly.
Now that you have come to the end of the letter, write a paragraph that sums up what you were saying before. Reinforce the best qualities that you and your family have, the good intentions you have for the home, and the excitement you have behind buying the house.
Keep in mind that another home buyer might be writing a letter too. Don’t write a novel that will discourage the seller from reading it. A page would be the perfect length, but if you end up writing more, try your best to keep it under two pages. The buyer can always include a photo of them and their family too! It puts a face to a name and supports the part of the letter where you tell the seller about your family.
When you have completely finished your letter, it’s time to pick a signature that best suits the situation. “Yours Truly” or “Sincerely” are two that are the best to stay away from. You want the buyer to feel connected to you rather than reading a business letter. Thankfully, there are many choices you can pick from that work! “Thank you for your time,” or “Thank you for the opportunity,” are two options.
At the end of the day, think about what you would want to read about. Would you be happy if someone told you that they wanted to buy your family home to start their own family? What would you be looking for that would put a specific home buyer above the rest? If you’re unsure, ask a local Realtor in Lake Arrowhead. They would know what would be great to mention from their previous experience.
Don’t let lack of experience stop you from writing the letter! Find the best real estate agent who has that knowledge to help you find your dream home. Their experience outweighs anything else! A local full-time agent would be able to point out key factors that the owner may respond to.
There is even a chance that your Lake Arrowhead Realtor knows the owners of the home. It’s a small town! You never know. If that’s the case, then they could guide you on what the owner would respond to better. At the very least, they know the town like the back of their hand and can give you a great understanding of what makes that home unique. That information could help you to have an edge over the other offers!