The real estate market can get very competitive. People often seek out ways to give themselves an edge or to get their offer accepted over someone else’s. If they cannot offer more money to try to gain that edge, they may decide to write a love letter to the seller about the home.
For example, maybe you found a home that will be perfect for your growing family. You may be tempted to write a letter to the person who currently owns it, just saying how perfect the home is and explaining your situation. You’re hoping that they have a connection with you and that they may accept your offer instead of a higher offer from someone who is simply a real estate investor or who wants to rent out the property.
Why shouldn’t you do this?
People have done this, but experts warn against it. One of the major reasons that you shouldn’t do this is that it can bring about allegations of discrimination and violations of housing rights. You are giving the seller information about you that they should not be using when deciding which offer to accept.
For example, say that you include a picture of your family with the letter because you think it makes you seem more personable. But this means you’ve also told the seller about your age and ethnicity. Your letter may also mention things like a religion that you’re a part of or other types of background information.
If the seller chooses to go with your offer, even though it provides less money, it could appear that they are discriminating on the basis of race or religion – especially if another potential buyer offers more money and feels that the only reason they weren’t accepted is that they are not part of this group.
As you can see, even ideas that sometimes seem wise can be problematic. Be sure you know about the legal steps to take when buying a home.