Susan Johnson, Home Buyer in New York, NY

Buying property that's not actively for sale

Asked by Susan Johnson, New York, NY Tue Jun 24, 2008

Hi there, we are very familiar with the Frisco/Buxton area of Hatteras island, and see some underutilized and vacant properties (on the tax maps) that we are interested in buying, but they are not actively "for sale." In some cases, it seems to be property that's been in the family for a long time and in others, they seem to belong to absentee owners. Realtors in the area so far have not been particularly interested in helping us, so i think we're on our own on this one. What is the most tactful way to approach these property owners, and what can we say or do to best pique their interest?

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Larry Hotz, Agent, Cherry Hills Village, CO
Wed Sep 24, 2008
There is another technique you could consider using.

You might to meet the people in the neighborhood. Consider walking up and down a few streets on a Saturday late morning or early afternoon. If someone is out raking leaves or doing some work on their home, it is a great time to engage in a little light conversation. You can spot the "talkers" easily. They will not just answer a quick question, they will walk up to you to talk. In our business, we call these people "bird dogs". They tend to know a lot about the neighborhood.

After you explain that you are interested in the neighborhood, they will often volunteer who might be moving. If they don't volunteer any information, you might ask: "Do you know anyone around her who might be thinking about or planning to move?

It's the personal approach. I have found it to work
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Jed Lane, Agent, Petaluma, CA
Tue Jun 24, 2008
Write them a nice note saying that you were in the area and saw what ever it was you saw and did the research to find out who owns it because you would love th be able to buy it. Be over the top enthusiastic so they think they are going to make a killing by calling you back. The sellers need to believe that you will do anything, pay any price, to get your hands on the property or they won't bother to call. Once you get them to call you then arrange to meet them at the property and be ready to discuss terms.
Do all that you can to get them to mention a figure first. Then be fair and maybe give a little to make it a win win. You can have an attorney write up contracts or if both you and the seller walk back iinto one of the real estate offices I bet you'd get more interest
1 vote
Arlan, , San Diego, CA
Fri May 17, 2013
You may want to contact They specialize in property that is NOT FOR SALE!
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Scott Godzyk, Agent, Manchester, NH
Wed Sep 24, 2008
you have two options. one is to find a buyer broker who can assist you in contacting them and you would have someone to watch out for you and guide you through the buying process. otherwise you take the names off teh tax role, craft a nice letter that you are looking for a home in that areas, and are they willing to sell. maybe include something that you are looking for a family home and why you like the area. pour it on thick... good luck
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