Follow-up question -- is it worth sending a letter to folks who live on the streets that I am interested in?

Asked by Not In A Rush, Waiting For The Right Neighborhood, Natick, MA Tue Feb 23, 2010

Would it be considered improper or too forward or in the worst case stalkerish?

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Theresa Cannizzaro’s answer
Theresa Cann…, Agent, Mullica Hill, NJ
Tue Feb 23, 2010
Absolutely! I've had buyers that wanted homes in specific neighborhoods where there were no homes on the market. Through our multiple listing service we have access to public records which will give us the addresses for a neighborhood. I have sent letters to those owners telling them about my buyer and asking if they would consider selling. I didn't have great success because they are usually very desirable areas and owners are there for that same reason and therefore don't sell often. If you have a buyers agent ask them to do the work for you. Good luck.
1 vote
Christine Del…, Agent, Santa Rosa, CA
Tue Sep 16, 2014
Yes, this is a service your real estate agent can do for you. It's called an "urgent need" letter and targets a specific area in the neighborhood that you request. The letter is customized for you, providing the prospective seller with specifics, such as characteristics, how many bedrooms and baths required, range of size for home and lot, whether you want a fixer-upper or a move in ready ("turn-key") home, etc. I also include a range of price my client might be willing to pay, but I don't like to be too specific because this could indicate a willingness to pay more than what the home could be worth.
Though I mostly work in the Valley of the Moon area in Santa Rosa, Ca, I have clients who are looking in a very specific area of West Petaluma. I send out letters that are customized for my client with the sole purpose of finding the right home for my client, however, if I happen to find a seller or buyer that doesn't meet the criteria, then it's a bonus for me. Everyone wins!
0 votes
Adam Shamus, Agent, Newton, MA
Tue Sep 16, 2014
It is absolutely worth the time to draft a letter to those living in areas you want to live in! As Realtors we do this all of the time for our buyer clients. You never know the mindset of someone and what their current situation is. I can personally attest to knowing folks who have found homes this way and would highly recommend it. If you are currently working with a buyer agent this is something they should be doing on your behalf.
0 votes
Bob Dorey, Agent, Natick, MA
Mon Sep 15, 2014
I'd love to help you. Feel free to contact me through my Trulia profile.
0 votes
Raymond Powe…, Agent, Everett, MA
Sun Oct 20, 2013
That is an awesome idea!!!
0 votes
Nancy Butter…, Agent, Ashland, MA
Mon Sep 2, 2013
I've worked with clients who wanted a particular street that was close to a commuter rail. I reached out to the home-owners on that street and was able to help the couple find a home there. You might
also try the town records to see who has lived on the street for sometime and send the letter directly
to them. If there is a neighborhood association find out who is the head of it, and contact them. They
just may have heard of someone interested in selling. All it takes is one good contact - good luck! If
I can be of further assistance please reach out to me - Nancy Butterly, Realtor,
0 votes
Mikel DeFran…, Agent, Canton, MA
Sun Sep 1, 2013
Yes, I've done so many time for my clients. It works very well with a professional, knowledgeable and SPECIFIC pitch. It is funny though, even with the above the folks that respond always seem to think I'm pulling their leg, or it's a listing ploy. They can usually figure out within a few minutes of conversation if you're legit or not. When I tell then ( for example ) " Yes, you got that mailing because you have a 4 or more bedroom, 2+ bath, over 2400 sq ft home in XX area " they usually know it's not a form letter.

So yes, used properly it can be an excellent tool in your search if you know exactly what you want.
0 votes
Mindy Roiff…, Agent, Wellesley, MA
Sun Mar 24, 2013
Even better, have your buyers agent do it on your behalf. The letter should include that your a strong buyer, per-approved and how much you only want this particular neighborhood. I have been a Natick resident for a very long time. Contact me anytime.
0 votes
Louis King R…, , 02472
Wed Oct 12, 2011
I had success doing this very thing for a buyer client. I had a client buyer who wanted a particular size condo in one specific building. I then narrowed my search to exclude anyone who had bought within the past year. I also excluded condos on the floors that my buyer didn't want.

One key is to make sure your letter doesn't look like a mass mailing letter. Handwritten is good. Tell the owner why you're interested in buying on their street or their neighborhood. If you can find out if the homeowner is upside down on their mortgage, tell them you're prepared to work with whoever holds their mortgage and do a short sale (if that is true). You can get some great deals buying a short sale. Have someone help you who's done it before.
0 votes
Tim Ambrose, Agent, Castro Valley, CA
Tue Feb 23, 2010
Hi Not In a Rush,

I think it's a great idea. Even better, hire a Realtor to do the work for you. He/she will have the name/s of the owner, send it on letter head which will take away the "stalkerish" feel and more serious.

Hope this helps!

0 votes
Mark Overhol…, Agent, Clovis, CA
Tue Feb 23, 2010
I don't think there is anything wrong with sending out letters to homeowners. Many Realtors will do the very same thing for clients who really want to live in an area that has no listings. It happens, and who knows you may find somebody that has been thinking about selling but just hasn't yet.
Make sure you know the values for the neighborhood, so if you do get a response you be able to move forward.
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more