Property there but not for sale?

Started by jdew, February 03, 2005, 12:27:29 PM

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Has anybody ever contact someone about a piece of land you were interested in but wasn't for sale?

Someone in my family has land in NE lower Michigan and it is a great area.  Nice woods, recreation, hunting, close to inland lakes and Lake Huron - oh and its an affordable area too.  About 4 hours from where I live near Detroit.

There are 3 - 3 acre lots adjacent to this property (25 acres).  One was for sale and my cousin was trying to come to an agreement on price, but the other two are not for sale - but they're vacant.  We found out who we assume to be the owners are(since they are paying the taxes), and their addresses.

Both the owners are from outside the area, one in California and one downstate.  Any tips on how to approach these people to see if they are interested in selling?  I guess I could write a letter to them but not sure exactly the best way to do it.  I would certainly be willing to pay a fair price for the property but it seems like if I am contacting them then they are at an advantage when it comes to negotiating.

Thanks for any advice or experience you want to share.


That is how we bought our place.  We found a piece of land for sale but were outbid on the price.  We loved the areas and started talking to neighbors about other vacant lots that weren't being developed.  I called some of the owners and just asked them if they were willing to sell.  One person was.  It never hurts to ask.  The worst they could do is say no.  If they aren't interested I wouldn't hound them anymore after that.


I haven't ever contacted a property owner about purchasing their land, but I have been contacted about selling my land.  Some guy must have gone to the county records office and searched for land that fit his price, acreage, etc and then sent out form letters to all the owners.  He described what he was looking for and gave a little information about himself.  I received two letters from him.  I ignored both since I am not interested in selling, but I can see how this approach could work out.


We didn't end up buying it, but we found a parcel by having our agent send a letter to everyone in a certain area who owned more than 10 acres, explained what we were doing, and would they be interested in selling?

Just a word to the wise, we ended up not buying it because the owner had very unrealistic expectations about how much his property was worth.
A fool and his money are soon elected.

glenn kangiser

As to unrealistic expectations, My wife and I along with her brother and his wife have a nice piece of property that we would only sell for about twice the going price.  It is a unique piece of property with a 360 degree view and can be subdivided into two pieces each worth what we paid for the place, or with a zoning variance worth more,  hence the "unrealistic" expectations.

There is still always the chance that someone will want it bad enough to buy it --if not for the unrealistic price, then we will sit on it.  Not much way to lose in the future.

"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

Glenn's Underground Cabin

Please put your area in your sig line so we can assist with location specific answers.


Glenn, I understand, we feel that way about our property. I have other things (cars, etc) like that. If someone wants to buy them, that's great, but they're worth to me way more than the actual market value. That's the luxury of not NEEDING to sell. ;D

I was trying to imply that this guy was serious about wanting to sell, he just didn't believe what we felt were very fair market comps, and placed a lot of value in a timber cruise which was outdated and (from what we could see with our own timber guy) pretty inaccurate.
A fool and his money are soon elected.


QuoteJust a word to the wise, we ended up not buying it because the owner had very unrealistic expectations about how much his property was worth.

Boy do I know what you mean. We're looking at this property down the street from us and this guy wants at least $50,000 for it. He only paid $1,250 for, it floods every time it rains, in fact last month the street in front of it collasped for that ver reason, and on the property there's a run down house full of asbestos. Yeah, I can see people running to buy it now.