Sean Nelson delivers dozens of letters between Salmon Arm and Vernon looking to buy distressed properties to flip them. (Photo submitted)

Handwritten letters offering to buy Shuswap homes not a scam

Letters used to source properties to invest in, respondents usually in financial distress

Hand-written letters offering to buy properties in the Shuswap have been a cause for concern among recipients, though the practice is neither illegal nor uncommon.

One such letter was shared to a private Facebook group, Shuswap Everything Friendly Goes, where it garnered the scorn of many. Commenters mainly cited the unprofessional appearance of the letter leading them to believe it was the work of a scammer.

Read more: Summerland real estate agents handled many home transactions

Read more: Okanagan real estate market cools off

The letter was delivered by Sean Nelson, who says he has delivered dozens of them to homes in Salmon Arm and Vernon, offering to buy the property in hopes of improving residences and flipping them.

Nelson says the handwritten aspect of the letters is a marketing tactic designed to appeal to people who may respond to a more personal touch rather than a more official looking letter.

Sometimes Nelson goes door knocking and speaks to residents in plain clothes to ask ask if they know of any neighbours that are looking to sell their properties.

“It’s the same idea – if you go to a door dressed up in a suit, you are going to get a lot more negativity than something you can relate to people more on,” Nelson said.

Read more: Vancouver’s luxury real estate market to get a boost: forecast

Read more: Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board announces new CEO

Nelson’s strategy is to send out a large number of letters that result in a small amount of responses from what he admits are people usually in some sort of financial distress.

“It’s just an investors tactic to look into distressed properties and find properties to invest in, that’s all,” he said.

While not a licensed realtor, Nelson draws a close comparison of his work to that of yellow letter marketing strategies.

The Real Estate Council of British Columbia regulates licensed real estate professionals in B.C., and frequently hears from members of the public who have questions or concerns about real estate transactions.

Read more: B.C. estimates $7 billion laundered in 2018, $5 billion in real estate

Read more: Canadian Real Estate Association reports home sales climbed higher in July

In a statement, the council suggests buyers and sellers get the information they need in order to make well-informed decisions. This information can include working with a licensed real estate professional.

To ensure your home is being sold for its true value, the statement makes several suggestions. Take note of selling prices of other homes in your neighbourhood, have properties appraised by a licensed home appraiser and interview licensed agents and ask each of them to compare your home to similar listings.


@CameronJHT
Cameron.thomson@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dozens of fish die at popular lake near Chase

A few natural phenomena are possible causes for their deaths.

Transport truck driver ticketed after rear-ending semi, closing Highway 1 in Shuswap

Truck catches fire, Chase RCMP ticket man for following too closely

Automated phone scam targets Shuswap residents

Scammers may be spoofing a local number and claiming they are with the CRA

Okanagan and Shuswap MPs want federal funds to help stop invasive species

Concerns raised that spending favours Eastern Canada.

COVID-19: Homeless to be relocated from temporary Okanagan shelter

Homeless shelters in Vernon have been combined into one site at the curling rink since April

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

Most Read