Try This Tip to Get the Edge On a House Offer

I'm a big fan of negotiating to get a better deal and to save more money. I know it's not often easy in our society or comfortable – but it can be worth the effort. Like they always say, “it doesn't hurt to ask“.

One of the biggest – and overlooked tactic in negotiating for a better deal (I think) – is to be nice.

Add to that: be personal.

Someone I work with is in the middle of selling her house. Attached with one of the offers she received on her home was a hand-written note in which the author introduced herself and also how much she loved the home.

What a novel idea!

We all know that the housing market is starting to pick up steam and seems to be favoring the seller. In a competitive market like this, with multiple offers, who do you think stands a better chance at landing a home?

Granted, a seller isn't going to lose thousands of dollars if the highest bidder didn't include a note. But, if the offers are fairly similar and only one person includes a hand-written note talking about themselves, their family and how much they would enjoy your home – who would you go with?

house offer tip

What to include in the note

If I were including a note with my offer to purchase a home, here's a few things that I'd say to the seller (and want to hear from the buyer, if I were on the other end):

  • A very brief sentence about myself, what I do and my family
  • Any information that I found out about the owners in my walk-throughs that may allow me to connect with them. Perhaps they have lots of golf paraphernalia. Being a golfer myself, I might add something to the note about how I saw they were golfers too – and that I enjoy the game. NOTE: This could get creepy to some.
  • How the location and house may benefit yourself / and your family.
  • How much you enjoyed the home and picture yourself living there, taking good care of it.
  • Be genuine and sincere!

I've actually never heard of this being done before until recently and I think it's a great idea. Especially in this sellers market.

I'd be interested to know if you've ever tried this tactic when putting an offer on a home OR have heard of it being done before. How did it turn out?

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  1. This is a great strategy. I definitely believe it would work if I was selling my house. The last time we sold a house we wanted to know all the details about how was offering to buy the house. A few of the offers were close, but we decided to go with the military vet using a VA loan.

    • Cool to hear how it worked for you Nate!

  2. I just purchased a home that was being sold by a Church (it was left to them by one of their parishioners). I used this strategy and it definitely helped.

    Unfortunately, getting the other side to commit to selling you the home is only the beginning of the nightmare of purchasing a home … at least in the State of NJ, where your average Realtor is so corrupt and slimy that they’ll do anything they can to maximize their commission at the expense of their clients.

    • Cool! Didn’t know it was like that in NJ. This is the one thing I’ve always had a hard time with too – that many realtors don’t really work for the buyer – but the seller (as that’s who pays em).

  3. I’ve seen this done on some of the HGTV home buying and selling shows, and in at least one case I think it may have helped to seal the deal. Not sure it would ever move the needle if the price wasn’t right as well, but every little bit helps I suppose?

    For me as a seller, all I care about is the “show me the money” part of it. :)

    • I hear you Peter. Guess that’s what it really comes down to in most cases.

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