When home buyers have found their dream home, it’s customary to write the sellers an offer letter. This letter consists of personal information, compliments of the house, and making a connection with the seller. An offer letter can make or break the beginning of a real estate transaction, especially if there are multiple offers on the house.
So, in the situation that there is a bidding war, this is how to make your offer letter stand out and win over the sellers to accept your bid.
Why Write an Offer Letter?
Real estate transactions may seem pretty straightforward. After you see a house that you would like to buy, your real estate agent sends over your offer and you wait for it to be accepted or denied. Writing an offer letter adds a personal touch and allows you to make a connection with the home sellers. Depending on the appeal of your letter and story, your offer letter could be the deciding factor when the sellers make a decision on whose bid to accept.
In the beginning of your offer letter, you should introduce yourself and explain who you are. This is the perfect time to make a connection with the sellers. If you noticed something that you share in common while touring the house, this is a great time to mention it. Here is where you can mention your family and any hopes and dreams this house could fulfill.
Compliment the House
Make sure to flatter the home sellers. Don’t be shy about stating what you love in the house. In fact, it’s much better to be specific than vague in this situation. If you loved the woodwork around the front door, mention it! This is the time to “show, don’t tell” in your letter. It also proves to the home sellers just how much you love the house and what stood out to you in particular.
Explain Your Offer
It can be uncomfortable talking about money, especially if your bid is a little lower than the asking price. It’s okay to talk about the amount of your bid in the offer letter, though. If it is lower than the asking price, this is a great time to explain why. Maybe you’ve only been preapproved for a certain amount and the bid is at your maximum budget. If you explain this, the seller will understand just how much you love their house.
Thank the Seller
When closing your letter, make sure to thank the sellers. You should thank them for their time reviewing your offer letter. You should also thank them for allowing you to enter their home and look around. As a home seller, it can feel invasive to have strangers walk around your house. As a home buyer, acknowledge this and thank them.
Present a Hard Copy
Living in a digital age where sending an email takes just a few seconds, an offer letter should be presented in a hard copy. Just think about how many emails people receive in a day. Most of it is junk mail, anyways. So, rather than emailing your offer letter and running the risk of having it be lost within the seller’s inbox, print it out and have it delivered with the rest of your bid. This will ensure that the letter ends up in the seller’s hands.
What Not to Include in an Offer Letter
There are some things that shouldn’t be mentioned in an offer letter as well. These things could actually hurt your chances to having your bid accepted by the sellers.
Too Personal Information – While it’s essential to provide some personal information in order to make a connection with the seller, you don’t want to get too personal. Leave out details like religion or political views.
Remodeling Plans – If you plan to change some things about the house, don’t mention it in your offer letter. Homeowners feel a personal connection to their home and most do not like the idea that it will look different after someone else buys it.
Other Offers – If you have submitted offers on other houses, it’s best to keep this information to yourself. The seller may assume that one of your other offers may be accepted instead and do not want to lose the chance to accept another buyer’s offer.
Negativity – Nobody likes someone with a negative attitude. Keep your letter positive and friendly. This will make you appeal more to the seller rather than if you had a negative tone.
Writing Your Offer Letter
The offer letter can be typed or hand written, depending on what you prefer. Don’t be afraid to ask your real estate agent to help you and look over your offer letter before submitting it. It should include personal information so you can build a connection with the seller, specific compliments about the house, an explanation of your bid, and thanking the seller for their time. With these four factors, you’ll have your bid accepted in no time.
About Agent Lady: Cherise Wynne is a leading real estate agent in Philadelphia, helping home buyers and sellers navigate the City of Brotherly Love, with a special focus on first time home buyers. To chat about getting started with your first time home buying experience, call 215-518-5193 or click here.