Lynn Washing…, Home Buyer in Washington Grove, MD

How likely is sending letters of purchase interest to homeowners that I will receive a (positive) response?

Asked by Lynn Washington, Washington Grove, MD Thu Sep 9, 2010

I'm interested in the Mount Vernon section (or it's nearby perimeters) of D.C. for a multi/4-unit and can go as high as $650,000. I don't think it's impossible but there hasn't been anything on the market now or in since April of interest to me. I was thinking of sending letters to property owners in areas I like, vacant property owners, etc. ...I'd even consider doing a conversion/rehab.

Help the community by answering this question:


If you put yourself in the position of the property owner, wouldn't a letter of interest hold more weight if it was from a licensed realtor? Sometimes property owners don't want to deal with individuals, whom they fear may be inexperienced, or not serious enough to follow through. It is very likely that the property owner would engage a realtor to handle their side of the transaction--leaving you at a distinct disadvantage.

In that pricepoint, a conversion/rehab would be the most likely scenario. Unless you have experience in evaluating and pricing a property for conversion/renovation and knowledge on facilitating the process (including zoning and permitting), you can pay too much for a property that in the end may not meet your needs.

Properties that are great opportunities aren't always on the market, and a good realtor who knows the area gets 'heads up' about pre-listings, too. There are many advantages to working with a realtor and even seasonsed investors do so.

What happened with the properties you liked in April?

Call or email if you'd like to discuss further. I'm very familiar with Mt. Vernon Triangle, experienced in construction and multi-family. Good luck!
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 11, 2010
Sending letters is better than doing nothing, however it does not work. I tried your tactic early 2000 for a several clients for almost a year. I did not have anyone to response to my letters.I would not give up because we have a different market now.
Your best bet at this point is commercial section of Washington Post every Sunday.

Good Luck!

Zaza Pasori | PenFed Realty
2722 Connecticut Ave NW # 72 Washington, DC 20008
T. 202-412-5221 F. 703-716-0017
Equal Housing Opportunity
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 13, 2010
Hi Lynn,

I also suggest using a Realtor to help you with contacting owners and producing letters of interest. As an agent, I can provide both you and the seller comparative market analysis so everyone understands the market for the area the property is located. If the letter states a price that is attractive to the owner then you just may get a positive response. I would also be able to run a search based on your requirements so you can get an idea of what is currently on the market in DC in your price range. Working with an agent can get you leverage and access to properties. There are a lot of great properties in the market and now is the time to purchase, so go for it and see what's out there!

Contact me with any other questions you may have. I would be happy to assist you.


Zondre Morris, SFR
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 9, 2010
Yes, you can send letters, however working with an agent will maximize your options.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 9, 2010
I've done it before for clients with positive results. You might have more "strength" if the letters came from a realtor!
Web Reference:
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 9, 2010
What wrong with contacting a realtor in your area. An agent will have access to more properties that meet your criteria. They'd be able to run comparables, assist you with writing your purchase agreement, etc.

Best of luck to you!!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 9, 2010
Depends on how you describe, "positive," I guess.

Lynn, in most markets, multi-family owners get solicitations all the time. Sometimes, they even get signed purchase offers sent to them.

On the other hand, it's certainly reasonable to try.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 9, 2010
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