Why homesellers shouldn’t accept buyer ‘love’ letters

Attorney said that photos create fair housing concerns
  • "Love" letters may work for buyers, but the photos and buyer details included in them may create fair housing concerns for listing agents and sellers, according to attorney Jon Goodman.
  • He advised listing agents to convince sellers not to accept the letters for that reason and because such letters are not necessarily reliable.

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They're called buyer letters, cover letters or simply "love" letters. They're the missives put together by hopeful buyers to try to convince sellers to pick their offer, often providing details on the buyers and gushing about how much they love the home and how happy they would be there. The letter may come with an adorable drawing of the home from their kid or a lovely family photo. There's a reason buyers and their agents use these letters -- they often work and may be especially crucial in bidding wars. Some real estate associations and brokerages even offer tips and templates for buyer letters. But should sellers and their agents accept them? That's another story. Fair housing Attorney Jon Goodman of law firm Frascona Joiner, Goodman & Greenstein, P.C., painted this scenario at the National Association of Realtors annual conference earlier this month: A buyer is a visible member of a historically oppressed minority. He made a $145,000 offer on a home. Th...