Offer Love Letters. Do they work?

So why are real estate love letters so controversial?

If you're a buyer, you may have written a love letter for a home. If you're not familiar with this practice, it is when you present an offer to the seller, along with a letter about who you are and how much you love their home, and how you will care for it if selected as the buyer. Letters like these work. You're humanizing yourself and making you and your offer stand out from the pack. If the homeowner has 3 or 4 or even 20 offers, any edge you can get can be helpful. But the practice is controversial. Why, the seller can accidentally make a decision that can be a fair housing violation. A seller cannot make a decision to sell a house to anybody based on their gender, sexual orientation, on their ethnicity, or on their religion. None of that can be considered when selling a home to somebody.

However, if there's anything in that letter that could tip the hand as to your sexual orientation or your ethnicity or your religion, then that could give the seller information that they may unknowingly use. For example, I had a homeowner once review the letter and say, “Oh, look at this lovely family, they even go to my church.”. I explained that that is not allowed. You can not sell a home to somebody because they go to your church. That is a fair housing violation. 

Ultimately she chose the highest offer, but it's important if you're a homeowner, that you know how this can get you into trouble. Many agents are now not even allowing the love letter. This is controversial. If you have any questions about whether or not you should write a love letter or not. Give us a call. We're happy to help.

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