My New Letter of Intent
Hooray for you – we're giving away another freebie today! Not only will you get to swipe a goodie from us, but I’ve also got an awesome video for you that comprehensively covers what we're giving away.
Look, there are lots of letters of intent available out there. You could even create one for yourself and consult with your attorney before using it.
But why reinvent the wheel?
We've already done all the heavy lifting for you. (You’re welcome!) I still suggest you cover your butt and run this document by your attorney before using it, but it’s our letter of intent of choice – and it’s worked for us for years.
It’s simple, matter-of-fact and to the point. And, you’ll notice it’s only 1 page. That’s intentional. That way sellers can quickly understand exactly what we're offering them.
The Body Consists of Only 2 Parts
As you’ll see, our letter – chock-full of benefits for the seller – is really just 2 main parts:
- Property Facts
- The Bottom Line
Think of the letter as a template. Most of the information will remain the same for every deal, but we customize it based on the details of each situation.
The first section – the property facts – is where we make the most changes. This is where you list your offer price, mention any repairs needed and include the closing and contingency details.
The bottom line section reiterates our interest, and reminds the seller that we’ll be there if and (hopefully) when they are ready to pull the trigger.
And that’s it.
Go ahead and press play…
I’ll go over the tone that your letter should reflect – we’re playing it cool here, kids, and we certainly don’t want to sound salesy.
This letter simply states the facts, considers the seller’s situation and reminds them to contact you when the time is right.
Hey guys, this is JP here, hope you're doing well today. I want to share with you a new letter of intent that we've been using in our wholesaling operation.
It's really not magical, but it's cool. It works and we just kind of closed an unexpected deal that circled back around and I think we made about six grand on it. It's just a little base hit of a wholesale deal, but it reminded me that I had not yet shared this with you or how we're using it in our business.
So, if you've been with us for a minute, then you know we have shared four letters of intent some time ago. In fact, somewhere here on this here lesson, there should be a link to the previous lesson on those letters of intent.
The letter of intent I'm about to share with you here is not any of those four. Okay? At the time I made that we actually weren't really using letters of intent much, we just very rarely used them on occasion. Now we're doing this pretty consistently and I came up with this document to use and so I want to share it with you, not to say those other ones don't work. Those are still good solid letters of intent and actually the specific one you use is less important than using it the way you use it.
Important disclaimer… you've been looking at it the whole time though, since I started the video. This form is provided as-is without any warranty of any kind of expressed or implied, statutory or otherwise, use any of this form at your own risk. So do your own due diligence. Check with an attorney and all that good stuff. This form works for us, but you shouldn't use it until you've run it by your expert advisor.
All right, so let's look at it. Letter of Intent to Purchase Property.
So, everything you see in blue is what we edit every time, right? Everything else, pretty much we keep the same.
Now, I’m giving this to you in a word doc form, but you're going to have to customize everything, obviously, right, because your name is Johnpaul Moses and James Alston. That's us, we’re The House Guys. So, you're going to have to, you know, make this your own.
The date is some kind of fancy little script that automatically updates to whatever today's date is. So, I know you're not seeing, but right now I'm making this video for you on March 3, 2016. So that's what popped up. I don't have to fill in the date. It's automagic, which is pretty cool. And that should translate into the document that you're going to be downloading. It should still work the same way. Hopefully.
Obviously, the address is whatever the street address is for the property that we're sending this. So, in this case it was 4870 Marcel… this is the homeowner's address. Now this is… their mailing address is often going to be different than the actual property. Right?
“Hi, Mr. Wigington,”, I'll just read through this and, and by the way I'll tell you in a minute how we're using this, but let me just read through the document itself. “Thanks so much for chatting with us recently about your property. It was nice meeting you. As we discussed, I'm sending you this letter of intent to summarize our cash offer to purchase your property. We've learned that just you just never know when life's circumstances may change and you should always know all your options. So we want to make sure you have our offer in hand based on our initial research and conversation with you;”…
Now, let me stop before I go any further. You may have picked up on this, but the tone of this is basically us submitting a something in writing to a seller who we have not currently been able to come to terms with. We get a lot of calls from people who have maybe, you know, crappy properties in crappy parts of town. Pardon my French there, but you know, they just want more for their house than we can pay. We always make them an offer and they say thanks, but no thanks.
Well, in those situations, uh, we still want to submit something to them and we want to give them something that they can use to circle back to us down the road when reality sets in and our stupid low price actually starts to make sense. And this happens more often than you would probably think.
This deal I was just talking about where we socked a little six grand base hit was a gal who we had made an offer to. She declined the offer, was maybe even a little bit insulted. And then four months later she came back and said, okay, uncle, I give.
So, we actually use this in Click2mail. We upload this into our Click2mail account and we have our assistant Carol send this. After having a conversation with a seller, anytime we know that we haven't come to terms and we want to have her send off one of these letters, we just mark it in Podio, it automatically creates a task for her in Podio to generate a letter of intent. She gets that tasks that day or the next day and she drops into the lead in Podio. Then she hops into Click2mail. She fires off one of these letters in Click2mail and it's in their hands, right?
Now, this also is a letter that gets sent out even if we haven't even given the property much due diligence and we just want to get something in their hand.
This number right here, a lot of times is just generated from a stock formula, believe it or not, based on the Zestimate of the property. A lot of times, Carol will just take whatever this estimate is.
And yes, I know some people are like, ugh, the Zestimate! First of all, ethe Zestimate in Zillow has actually gotten a lot better nowadays than it used to be back when Zillow first came out. When the Zestimate first came out it was the laughing stock of real estate valuation, but anymore it's actually getting a lot better. Their algorithm is better.
I'm not saying you should bank on it instead looking at comps and doing your own valuation. But it's it's a good starting point. And I've said this before, but in some of our Q&A coaching calls, we often use Zillow as our starting point to construct a ball park offer and that's a lot of times what you're looking at here.
We're not making a hard, you know, we're ready to pull the trigger here in this case at $32,000. Carol and James have just looked at what's the estimate for this property? Okay, let's take that Zestimate, let's multiply it by 65 percent, let's subtract ballpark repairs from that based on just what the seller might have said in their conversation to us… Very broad strokes here… Let's subtract another seven grand off of that so we have some profit built in and then let's toss that into this letter of intent. And say we're interested in buying your property for this much.
This is not a contract, okay? This is simply a starting point.
“We're interested in buying your property for $32,000 cash. We will buy as-is so if repairs or fixing up as needed, it's no problem. We can handle any and all repairs when you sell to us so that you won't be inconvenienced. We'll close within 30 days or faster if needed, whatever works for you, really. We will pay you all cash and cover all closing costs and no fees, costs or commissions to you whatsoever. Our only contingency with this is #1, clear title and #2 final inspection by us before closing. Here's the bottom line: We are local Memphians and we love investing in our hometown. We've been buying and selling houses since 2001 and have a long track record of very happy people who we've helped move on from their house quickly and easily. If this scenario ever make sense to you, please reach out again anytime, and we will schedule an appointment to view the property and move forward from there.”
And basically me and James took an image of our signatures, we scanned it a signed piece of paper, , and then created a nice, high quality resolution graphic of them. You can just see it's just a graphic in Microsoft Word. We created a transparent png for those of you who were playing along at home and do graphic design. If you don't know what that means, that's fine, but it looks like we actually signed the document now in Click2mail when it's published. It doesn't look as good as this, but it doesn't matter really
So, by the way, the vibe I want you to notice is here is that you won’t see a single exclamation point on this letter. I do not want this to feel hypey, like I'm trying to sell them on something. What I want this to feel like we're being kind to their situation, but not we don't need them. I don't want them to feel like we're trying to sell them on us too hard.
I do want to highlight a few things here…
Number one, the facts of what, what we're suggesting as our starting point. Right? And I want to do that succinctly. I don't want it to be too terribly wordy or even, looking at this document, I want you to be able to see it's just one side of one piece of paper and it's easy to scan.
The things that are bold in it are bold because people tend to scan things first before they read them, we've been trained by the Internet to do that. So when you scan this, you're going to see, okay, this line about interested in buying for cash as is 30 days. All cash, all closing costs. Okay? I mean those are anchor points for your eyes.
If this was too wordy, if there were too many paragraphs or it was too dense, it would make your brain think, ah, I don't want to read all this. Is it worth my time? And you start having discussions with yourself about whether or not it's worth your time to read it. This is an easy thing to read, but it's also an easy thing to scan. And that's an important point in my view.
Like I said, it's not hypey, it's very matter of fact, but it does cover some real benefits to them. For example, I mentioned,
“So if repairs or fixing up is needed, it's no problem. We can handle making any and all repairs when you sell to us”… little embedded command there for you NLPers… “so that you won't be inconvenienced in the least.”
There's a benefit right there. All right? They won't have to be inconvenienced in the least.
“Will close within 30 days. But really whatever works for you, right? No fees, costs or commissions to you whatsoever.”
So, I'm basically still selling sizzle here. I'm just not trying too hard because I don't want them to think we're motivated buyers, right? So, there's a lot of my thinking actually went into crafting this letter. And hopefully you've been able to crawl inside my head a little bit now and understand.
Now, make it your own. And you know, if this is not your style, you can use this as a starting point and create your own version of this if you want to. Maybe you want exclamation points all over the place. I don't know. But at the end of the day, this is the letter of intent we're using.
And again, our standard procedure is whenever a lead comes in that we're not able to buy right now, for whatever reason, we have Carol fire one of these off through Click2mail. We just send her a task in Podio and then we get deals that come back to us down the road through this.
This is a great kind of follow-up sequence. I don't know if you really want to call it a sequence. It's just a way to give them something that they'll hold onto, a lot of them, and when the motivation gets bad enough, they'll come back to you.
Okay, so there you go guys. I hope you enjoyed that. You can download this and a swipe and deploy, use it in your business and I'd love to hear what your thoughts are.
Would you leave me a comment below? I'd really be grateful. I love hearing what you guys think about the things that we have to say and share here. So fire away and if you have any questions, let me know those as well. I'm happy to fill in any blanks if I missed anything here. Thanks guys.
Here’s how to download our “New Letter of Intent”
Step 1 ⤸
“Like” our Facebook page please?
Step 2 ⤸
Just leave a comment below sharing your honest feedback on the letter of intent template I'm freely sharing with you. Whatever you think after hearing my thoughts behind it in the video above. Good, bad, and anywhere in between. Seriously.
Alternately, I’m also interested in hearing anything else (another resource or tool) that you’d like us to share in a future “Swipe & Deploy” like this. Do tell.
Step 3 ⤸
Then Chuck Norris will hand you over my template.
Totally serious. Just try it. 😀