A Strategy for Seattle Home Buyers: I Love Your Home Letters

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The Wall Street Journal writes about a strategy home buyers in hot housing markets are using to get their offers accepted in hotter housing markets. From WSJ:

“In an echo of the last housing boom, ardent pitch letters from eager home buyers are popping up again in hot U.S. real-estate markets like Silicon Valley, Seattle, San Diego, suburban Chicago and Washington, D.C., housing economists and real-estate brokers say.

The heartfelt missives, often accompanied by personal photos, aim to create an emotional bond that can give their writers an edge—especially in situations where multiple bidders are vying for the same house. And the reappearance of buyer pitches, also known as love letters, offers further evidence that the housing market is rebounding after a five-year slump.”

I have written letters to underwriters before on behalf of my borrowers and have gone so far as to include a photo of my client which has helped with loan approvals. A letter from the buyer to “pitch” their story to the seller is something I haven’t heard of before.

What is probably more important than “a pitch letter” to the seller is your preapproval letter from a respected mortgage professional. A preapproval letter will assure the seller that you are approved for a mortgage specific to your offer and that the transaction should successfully close. A well written preapproval letter addresses the borrowers down payment, credit, income and employment have been verified. 

In a multiple offer situation (sometimes referred to as a “bidding war”) it’s not unusual for the seller’s real estate agent to call the mortgage originator who has written the preapproval letter to do a “sniff test”.  

While a letter from a potential home buyer expressing how perfect the home is for their family may give a buyer an edge over other offers, please don’t forget your mortgage preapproval letter.

If you are considering buying a home in Seattle or anywhere in Washington state, where I am licensed, please contact me. I would love to help you with your mortgage!

Comments

  1. Hey Rhonda! I LOVE these “Home Letters” and have often used them when representing Buyers. They can make all the difference and set you apart from the pack. But just a heads up to Sellers in our market: You need to be very careful about these! Having a savy agent can make all the difference between having happy buyers and sellers, or a getting into a lawsuit! Here in King County and Seattle we have 12 protected classes under our Fair Housing laws. And accepting an offer for the reasons given in the Wall Street Journal article mentioned here could be asking for trouble. “Parential Status” is a protected class and if someone did not get the home because they did not have children the seller could be in big trouble. Here is a link that gives some detail.
    http://www.kingcounty.gov/exec/CivilRights/FH.aspx
    These laws vary in different localities and cities. But if sellers have any questions they should consult their Real Estate Broker or ask an attorney.

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