By Rich Rodenburg, Nebraska Home Sales Associate Broker
As we move into May, we are seeing the summer real estate market turn into another frenzy like last summer. Homes in a mid-price range (approximately $150,000-$250,000) are often the most frenzied. My team put four such homes on the market in the last few weeks and received multiple offers on each. Multiple offer situations can be tricky for a lot of reasons. One is a new trend of buyers writing letters to the seller in order to sway a decision.
A home purchase is a business decision, and we need to weigh the offering price and about 10 other factors, including buyer’s financing and type of loan, inspections requested, personal property to be included, contingencies, closing date, etc.
We recently had a case involving a letter. We received multiple offers, two very close. One buyer, who coincidentally had the strongest offer, hand-wrote a letter to the seller telling them how much they love the house and promising to take great care of it as the sellers have. The seller had to hand it over to his wife to finish reading as he choked up.
Sellers have emotional ties to their home and neighborhood, and they want to feel good about whose hands they are leaving it to. In this case the contract was humanized.
This situation is tricky for both the REALTOR® and the seller. Fair housing dictates that we cannot discriminate against protected classes, including race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, and disability.
While it is still fairly rare to receive such a letter with a contract, it was comforting to the seller to know the buyer is not going to turn it into a rental and appreciates the care that has gone into the house. The letter our sellers received did not violate Fair Housing rules, but many do. REALTORS® know these rules and can help sellers avoid breaking laws as they decide who to sell their home to in a non-discriminatory manner.
Your Team (myself, Kim Soucie, and Tim Reckling) are committed to providing you with excellent service and helping both buyers and sellers minimize their sticky situations. Please give us a call.