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Love Letters and Home Buying

  • March 27, 2012

by Shilpi Paul

Love Letters and Home Buying: Figure 1

Have your heart set on a house and want to rise above the competition? Try writing a love letter.

Yesterday, The New York Times reported on a new trend: heartfelt letters from potential buyers to the sellers of a home they are interested in. The article highlighted a Manhattan couple whose love letter won them a home even though their offer came in $8,000 below a competing bid. The couple met in the neighborhood and had dreams of raising their child in the apartment; apparently, the sellers were touched by the story.

While a touching competitive advantage, the Times does share some stories of letters-gone-wrong, like one from a former frat brother waxing nostalgic about the “hot women” from old college parties.

From The Times:

Those who advocate writing letters recommend a few key ingredients, the heartstrings being paramount (if you’re going to talk about children, mention their names), and anything the buyer and the seller might have in common (“You have twins? I have twins!”). Another important element is specificity, which fosters more of a connection between the two parties. “Wow, I love your green bathroom, or that you’re using your fireplace as a sanctuary when you do yoga,” suggested Jessica Buchman, a broker at the Corcoran Group, who recommends letters frequently. “I love that you have a birdbath in the toilet.”

Usually a rational transaction based on numbers and conditions, the buying process generally keeps buyers and sellers as far from each other as possible, channeling communication through their agents and financial documents. This trend marks a humanizing of the process.

Readers, have you heard of anything like this happening in DC?

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This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/improve_your_odds_of_closing_the_deal_with_a_letter/5338

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