Vacant Homes Letter for Good Response Rate

18 Replies

Hello my BP friends.

I have a few leads on vacant properties that are run down and have basically been abandoned by the owners and I want to send the owners a letter offering to buy their property. Do any of you have a letter that has a good success rate that you would be willing to share? Something thats makes the owner say "Yes, I want to sell and this is the person to sell to". I am not looking to mass mail to all vacant homes but rather just to a selected few target property owners.

Thanks in advance for any help/letters.

Sheri - There really isn't any magic letter copy. It's about relationships and understanding the motives of the owner and tying into catalysts that trigger their desire to talk to you. That's all the letter is supposed to do.

Btw, I've bought probate houses in Norwalk (Allard St.) and abandoned houses, north of the one-ways.

@Rick Harmon
Thanks for your reply. I have no way of initially contacting or connecting with the owners except for mail as all the properties are in a different state then I am. And I don't know if they want to sell or not...they simply own homes that are empty and in most cases have been neglected for years so I want to contact the owners to see if they would be interested in selling. If I get a response then I can work on building the relationship, understanding their motives etc... That's why I'm looking for a letter that will get their attention vs the same old "I Buy Houses" letter they may be getting from others. I know there's no magic letter copy but I'm sure some approaces have a better success rate then others and that is what I am hoping to find here...Maybe someone who has experimented with different letters and has found one to have a higher success rate then others.

And it's always good to see a fellow local investor working in my own backyard ;) I hope to expand into my local area in the near future with fix and flips but right now I only buy and hold in Ohio.

Sheri,

Be to the point and let them know you'll buy their house for cash. People want deals closed quick. If someone wants to sell, they will sell. They don't need to hear that you'd love to live there or you want to turn it into a crack house. If they walked from it and see that someone will pay them money, they only need to hear a few words. Besides, Americans have got Candy Crush and Angry Birds to play. They don't have time to read more than a paragraph.

@Scott Stevens Thanks for the good advice. Those are all very valid points!

Sheri,

I would handwrite a personal letter on personal stationary with a matching envelope and pretty stamp since it's a few select properties. That would make your letter stand out for sure. And as Scott said, keep it brief, but make it just a tad personal to each property.

@Jane George. More good advice...thank you. I like the idea of the nice stationary etc... I used that approach before when I was an agent but didn't even think of it now so thanks for the reminder... I will definitely do that!

Hi, my name is Sheri Ulm and I'm really interested in your house on 123 Main Street. I drive by it all the time and wish I could fix it up to its former glory. Please call me so I can brainstorm ideas with you on what the houses best future is.

Thanks,

(Signature and phone number)

Then follow up. Follow up.  Follow up.

@Derek that's a great and short to the point copy...well done!

Derek - Sounds too complicated.

Care to elaborate? ; )

@Derek W Perfect!!! Thank you.

Hi Sheri,

I always write "notice" in blue or red ink vertically along the side of the envelope for these type of properties. It essentially guarantees they open and read my letter. I have never had any seller complain about it either.

@Derek W I should clarify...I will have to edit the "I drive by it all the time" part for my out of state properties but I will definitly use a modified version and I will use this in its entirety for anything local when I get to that point.

@Mike Sattem I like that idea also and will use it. I may switch between the "notice" idea and @Jane George personlization idea and see what happens with each

There is nothing that gets someone's attention better than a picture in the letter of their house.

Originally posted by @Sheri Ulm:

Hello my BP friends.

I have a few leads on vacant properties that are run down and have basically been abandoned by the owners and I want to send the owners a letter offering to buy their property. Do any of you have a letter that has a good success rate that you would be willing to share? Something thats makes the owner say "Yes, I want to sell and this is the person to sell to". I am not looking to mass mail to all vacant homes but rather just to a selected few target property owners.

Thanks in advance for any help/letters.

 Hi Sheri,

Please feel free to message me with your email and I would happily forward a letter we send out.

Its on a company letterhead with very basic wording but straight to the point.

Thanks and have a great day.

I would never suggest someone's property needs to be restored to former glory.  It may the be childhood home of someone seriously abused.  Could be where their wife committed suicide.  Could be they were fixing it up and stopped when they got a divorce.  I wouldn't comment on driving by anybody's property in a letter.  Too much paranoia out there. On the first contact, I make make it simple and neutral.  If you're interested in selling, I'd love the opportunity to make an offer.  You can sell the property totally as-is, quickly and easily.  

The time for building rapport is when they call you and tell you what they would like to see happen.  Some sellers are VERY private and need you to be all business.  Others need to tell their story over and over to someone who will listen.

Do what you can to make your letter look like you're in the business for the long haul so that the letter goes in their property file.  The last two deals I closed, the sellers called 6+ months after getting my letter.  

@Sheri Ulm  

I'm a big fan of short, handwritten, and to the point. Stationary is a bonus. All you want to do with the letter is initiate a contact, not persuade them to sell.

Hi prospect,

I'm interested in buying your house at 2702 Linden Ave, Dayton Ohio. If you're thinking of selling it, please give me a call at (937) 458-3303.

Sheri

Email address

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