Realtors no longer ♡ “love letters” to sellers

The seemingly harmless tactic could lead to fair housing violations, industry groups warn

National /
Jul.July 23, 2021 07:00 AM
Realtors no longer heart “love letters” to sellers

(iStock)

“Love letters” belong in the hands of a significant other, not a home seller, a growing number of realtors say.

Ohio Realtors president Seth Task is the latest to come out against the letters, a tactic traditionally used by potential home buyers as a means of forming a personal connection with sellers and gaining an edge on rival bidders.

Task told News 5 Cleveland that he no longer welcomes love letters and encourages fellow realtors to reject them as well.

In Northeast Ohio, approximately 25 percent of sellers’ agents have stopped accepting the letters amid growing concerns that they could enable discrimination.

In October, the National Association of Realtors began warning real estate agents that the letters were a “potential liability.”

The Fair Housing Act explicitly prohibits sellers from accepting or rejecting offers on the basis of protected characteristics such as race, religion or familial status. Because love letters can often reveal such personal information about buyers, NAR cautioned, accepting them could expose agents and their clients to fair housing violations.

While the use of love letters is falling out of favor in Ohio, there is no legislation banning them at this point. The same can’t be said for Oregon, which recently became the first state to outlaw the letters.

According to KGW8, House Bill 2550 — signed into law by Gov. Kate Brown in June — instructs agents to prevent direct communication between buyers and sellers, apart from a traditional offer.

[News 5 Cleveland] — Holden Walter-Warner





    Related Articles

    arrow_forward_ios
    Wells Fargo hit with $400M suit for breach of contract linked to robo-signing scandal
    Wells Fargo hit with $400M suit for breach of contract linked to robo-signing scandal
    Wells Fargo hit with $400M suit for breach of contract linked to robo-signing scandal
    The slowing of the housing market has squeezed the profit margins of house-flipping investors. (iStock)
    Profit margins on fixer-uppers fall to 10-year low
    Profit margins on fixer-uppers fall to 10-year low
    The Saratoga County construction company owner defrauded homebuyers and lenders out of $1 million, spending money on himself or other jobs rather than the homes he promised to build. (iStock)
    Upstate homebuilder gets prison for failing to deliver
    Upstate homebuilder gets prison for failing to deliver
    Quick turnaround times have luxury buyers considering modular as an alternative to traditional construction for grandiose homes. (iStock)
    Modular construction works for luxury homes, too
    Modular construction works for luxury homes, too
    Ribbon co-founders Shaival Shah and Wei Gan (Ribbon, iStock)
    Homebuying startup Ribbon to take on Midwest, West Coast markets
    Homebuying startup Ribbon to take on Midwest, West Coast markets
    (Compass)
    Waterfront home in Water Mill asks $19.5M
    Waterfront home in Water Mill asks $19.5M
    Loy Carlos leaves Corcoran for Serhant luxury unit
    Loy Carlos leaves Corcoran for Serhant luxury unit
    Loy Carlos leaves Corcoran for Serhant luxury unit
    Deconstruct Podcast
    Now streaming: the debut episode of Deconstruct, TRD’s new podcast
    Now streaming: the debut episode of Deconstruct, TRD’s new podcast
    arrow_forward_ios

    The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

    Loading...