Oregon to ban ‘gushing' love letters to homeowners from potential buyers

Asia's Tech News Daily

Oregon to ban ‘gushing’ love letters to homeowners from potential buyers
© Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Steve Dipaola/Reuters

As Kira Hodgson, 33, rereads the “love letter” she wrote a year ago to the owners of the Portland, Oregon, home she now lives in, she starts to cry. “I can’t believe how vulnerable I was,” she says. “I don’t know any other situation in which you’d sit down and write a gushing letter like this to a stranger.”

Hodgson, a product designer, was living in San Francisco and had been looking for a home in Portland, to be nearer her family as she recovered from breast cancer treatment, when she found a house she loved. “I was seeing other houses go in two or three days on Zillow,” she says. “I knew I had to move quickly and give the sellers whatever I could.”

Her agent told her to use her real estate “love letter”, the buyer’s offer letter, to connect with the sellers who were emotionally attached to the home. Hodgson wrote how she could see herself cuddling her cat by the fireplace (she’d spotted they also had litter trays), baking cookies in the kitchen with her nieces, celebrating life with her friends under the backyard’s pergola. Via LinkedIn, she discovered one of the owners was a reiki healer. “I wrote in the letter that part of me was craving the healing community of the Pacific north-west and that I loved the energy of the house,” she says. “That was definitely true – but I wouldn’t have put it in if I hadn’t thought it would help get me the house.”

Oregon to ban ‘gushing’ love letters to homeowners from potential buyers
© Photograph: Steve Dipaola/Reuters A home on the market in north-west Portland.

The home received three offers. Financially, Hodgson wasn’t offering the most, but the house went to her. When she moved in, the sellers left her a big sage stick and said they’d cleansed the house daily. “I think the letter made the difference,” she says.

From one perspective, the use of these letters is crucial in helping sellers make personal connections with the best buyers in high-demand markets. Brad Twiss, owner of Neighbors Realty in Portland, says: “In any market, sellers are very curious about buyers – some express a desire to find someone who can properly maintain the home or be good neighbors. The buyer letter really scratches that itch for a lot of sellers who wonder about these people on the other side of an offer.” Many sellers include a picture of themselves with their families and pets.

But from another perspective, the letters can introduce discrimination into the home-buying process. “A buyer can hurt their chances of winning if they choose to write a personal letter that forces them to disclose their race, gender, family status, etc.” Twiss explains. “For every client of mine who’s won because of a letter, that means there was another buyer who lost.”

Related: How a Paris designer built a family home in an old mirror factory

Under a new law that comes into effect on 1 January in Oregon, real estate love-letter writing will be banned in the state. The legislation was sponsored by the Democratic state representative Mark Meek, a real estate broker himself, and states that sellers’ agents can no longer accept communication from the buyer other than customary documents “to help a seller avoid selecting a buyer based on the buyer’s race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, marital status or familial status as prohibited by the Fair Housing Act”.

Oregon has a history of redlining districts and discriminatory housing policy that kept Black people from living in certain neighborhoods. The new law aims to eliminate conscious or subconscious gatekeeping by sellers when they select who gets to live in their home and their neighborhood after they leave. Equal housing advocates argue that this will help create a more level playing field for people who might otherwise lose out on a home or living in a neighborhood because of who they are.

But the legislation is being challenged by a real estate firm in Bend, Oregon. “Oregon’s ban prohibits this first amendment-protected form of expression,” says Daniel Ortner, an attorney representing Total Real Estate Group, who filed the injunction. “It does so without any justification or any real evidence of discrimination.”

Ortner says that the letters actually help less privileged buyers compete with investment firms looking to buy rental properties as they can show they will love and cherish the property even if they can’t offer as much cash. “Sellers love their properties, neighbors, and communities and want to find someone who will take good care of the house and be a good neighbor,” he says. “Oregon is treating buying and selling a home as nothing more than buying a pair of pants at the self-checkout line at Walmart.” Ortner works for the Pacific Legal Foundation, a nonprofit that says it defends Americans from government overreach and abuse.

Twiss counters: “Of the people challenging this law, I’ll venture to guess that none of them have ever been passed over for a home or job and been forced to wonder if it’s because of the color of their skin or who they love. Privilege makes it hard for people to understand why this is so important for prospective buyers.”

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related

OTHER NEWS

Jeff Goldblum closes Prada's menswear show at Milan Fashion Week

© AP Jeff Goldblum walked down the runway in a black overcoat with bands of fluffy faux fur – AP Jeff Goldblum closed Prada’s menswear show at the Milan Fashion ... Read more »

NCR Covid-19 growth rate reaches negative level

The growth rate of Covid-19 cases in the National Capital Region have reached negative level based on data of the Department of Health. The positivity rate and reproduction number have ... Read more »

China's birthrate falls to 61-year low despite moves to stave off demographic crisis

© Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Xinhua/Rex/Shutterstock China’s birthrate has fallen to its lowest level in six decades, barely outnumbering deaths in 2021 despite major government efforts to increase population ... Read more »

Kendall Jenner steps out in fur for dinner with Fai Khadra in Aspen

During the day on Sunday Kendall Jenner was spotted with a few of her close friends, including Fai Khadra, for a day of snowboarding in Aspen, Colorado.  And by nighttime, ... Read more »

Kerala lottery 2022: Win Win W-651 results to be out at 3 pm; first prize Rs 75 lakh

© Provided by Firstpost Kerala lottery 2022: Win Win W-651 results to be out at 3 pm; first prize Rs 75 lakh The results of the Win Win W-651 lottery ... Read more »

‘Marine super year' promised by UK government was a flop, say wildlife charities

A ministerial promise that 2021 would be a “super year” for marine protection has fallen flat, according to conservation groups. Charities including the RSPB, WWF-UK and Surfers Against Sewage said ... Read more »

Pandit Birju Maharaj's filmy detours were no short of magical; Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Kamal Haasan, Alia Bhatt pay tributes

© Provided by Firstpost Pandit Birju Maharaj’s filmy detours were no short of magical; Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Kamal Haasan, Alia Bhatt pay tributes Pandit Birju Maharaj was to the Kathak ... Read more »

Naagin 6: Ekta Kapoor to make an announcement soon about show's lead, release date

© Provided by BollywoodLife.com Naagin 6 is one of the most awaited television shows. Every fans is eagerly waiting to know who the lead stars will be in the new ... Read more »

French political left light up an enormous parliamentary doobie

French MPs discussed a bill this week to legalise the consumption of cannabis. Proposed by the hard-left France Unbowed party (LFI), it is not expected to find government support, but ... Read more »

UK man left paralysed following 'freak accident' helped back on his feet by sport stars

A businessman left paralysed following a “freak accident” while raking his lawn has been helped back on his feet by two sport stars. Darren Bovis, 54, lost the use of ... Read more »

China's Economy Grows at Slower Pace, PBOC Cuts Key Interest Rates

© Reuters China’s Economy Grows at Slower Pace, PBOC Cuts Key Interest Rates By Gina Lee Investing.com –China’s economy grew slower in 2021, potentially impacted by a property market slump. ... Read more »

UAE weather today: dusty and partly cloudy with a chance of rain

© Provided by The National The weather today will be dusty and partly cloudy with a chance of rain. Sarah Dea/The National The weather today will be dusty and partly ... Read more »

Punjab Assembly polls: Here's why parties have asked EC to defer elections in the state by at least six days

© Provided by Firstpost Punjab Assembly polls: Here’s why parties have asked EC to defer elections in the state by at least six days The Election Commission will hold a ... Read more »

Cost of living to bite hardest in spring with an extra 1m households with children plunged into fuel poverty

The cost of living squeeze is set to bite hardest in the spring with an extra one million households with children plunged into fuel poverty, i can reveal. More than ... Read more »

Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo in Hindi: After Pushpa, Allu Arjun gears up for classic comeback in theatres again

© Provided by Pinkvilla After the massive success of Pushpa, the makers of Allu Arjun and Pooja Hegde starrer Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo have taken a smart move. Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo makers are ... Read more »

Covid-19 in Delhi: Expect around 14,000 fresh cases today, says Satyendar Jain

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said daily Covid-19 cases in the national capital would log a decline for the fourth day straight, with around 14,000 fresh infections reported in the ... Read more »

Covid vaccine: Parents spend thousands to travel abroad to get jabs for their children aged under 11

Some parents have resorted to spending thousands of pounds on taking their children under the age of 11 abroad to get vaccinated against Covid, i has learned. Children aged 5-11 ... Read more »

Bangarraju day 3 box office collection: Nagarjuna and Naga Chaitanya's supernatural film completes roaring first weekend

© Provided by BollywoodLife.com Bangarraju is taking the box office in both Telugu states of Andhra Prades and Telangana by storm while also putitng up a solid show overseas. The ... Read more »

Covid-19 booster vaccines now open to teenagers and most at risk 12 to 15-year-olds

Teenagers will be able to book their booster dose online from today as the NHS rolls out booster vaccines to children aged 12 to 15 years old who are most ... Read more »

‘My warm home allowance doesn't even cover my energy bill': The people buffeted by the cost of living crisis

Families, single parents and pensioners have spoken about the reality of being affected by the cost of living crisis, with some struggling to pay their bills even with hardship payments. ... Read more »

Alex Ferguson's reaction when two Man Utd players went out partying after Man City loss

It’s fair to say Manchester United miss Sir Alex Ferguson. The club haven’t won the Premier League title since 2012/13 – Ferguson’s final season before retiring. In total, he won ... Read more »

Tim Sherwood notices Jordan Henderson's sly move during Liverpool's win over Brentford

Tim Sherwood has praised Jordan Henderson for his “very clever” involvement in Liverpool‘s opening goal against Brentford. The Reds climbed up to second in the Premier League table as a ... Read more »

Delhi weather update: Cold wave conditions likely in parts of capital

© Provided by The Financial Express On Sunday, the maximum temperature was recorded at 17.2 degrees Celsius while the minimum temperature settled at 8.1 degrees Celsius. (Photo source: IE) Delhi ... Read more »

Munster impressed by Crowley's 'class' performance in Castres

IT’S RARE ENOUGH that out-halves feature among a team’s top tacklers and ball-carriers but Jack Crowley’s appetite for getting stuck in was very evident in Castres on Friday night. On ... Read more »

2 pro-farmer party-list members shot dead in Sorsogon

FILE PHOTO: A Filipino farmer walks with his carabao past coconut trees damaged by typhoon Durian, in Ligao city, Albay province, central Philippines, February 7, 2007. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco (PHILIPPINES) Amid ... Read more »

I have oil in my hair: 'Anupamaa' fame Rupali Ganguly shies away from paps in viral video!

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: Popular television actress Rupali Ganguly has a huge fanbase who loves to watch her on the superhit daily soap ‘Anupamaa’ these days. Social media ... Read more »

R Madhavn feels he can't star opposite Katrina Kaif; Hrithik Roshan is the reason behind it

© Provided by BollywoodLife.com R Madhavan won millions of hearts with his debut film Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein. Maddy was not a character but an emotion. Despite having no ... Read more »

Uproar in Kashmir Press Club over forceful 'takeover', details here

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: A group of journalists who entered the Kashmir Press Club on Sunday has caused a major uproar. After being there for an hour, ... Read more »

Das Ansehen der Schweizer prägen in der NHL andere

Wird nun die Diskussion um die «Swiss Miss», die angeblich früh aufgebenden Schweizer, wieder befeuert? © Foto: Gerry Broome (Keystone) Schweizer Duell in der NHL: Carolinas Nino Niederreiter (hinten) und New ... Read more »

Cosatu: ANC must assess what went wrong for the party at local government polls

© Boikhutso Ntsoko/Eyewitness News. ANC flag. DURBAN – Cosatu has called on the African National Congress (ANC) to assess itself to determine what went wrong for the party at last ... Read more »

Wellbeing of pupils in spotlight as coastal schools set to reopen

© Reinart Toerien/EWN Chalk and a blackboard duster in the refurbished Samson Senior Primary School in the Eastern Cape. CAPE TOWN – With two days before public schools in coastal ... Read more »

Novak Djokovic's family and the Serbian government condemned Australia's deportation of the tennis star as 'scandalous'

© Luca Bruno/AP Images Novak Djokovic left Melbourne Airport on Sunday. Luca Bruno/AP Images Novak Djokovic’s family said the tennis star’s deportation by Australia was “scandalous.” Djokovic is now out ... Read more »

Kerwin Espinosa, 2 others tried to escape detention center —NBI

© Danny Pata Kerwin Espinosa Self-confessed drug distributor Kerwin Espinosa and two other prisoners attempted to escape the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) detention center, the agency announced Monday. NBI ... Read more »

Daily Schmankerl: Chelsea chasing Bayern Munich alumnus Ivan Perisic?; Real Madrid out of the running for Erling Haaland?; Robin Gosens to Newcastle United?; Karim Adeyemi to Borussia Dortmund heating up; and MORE!

© Photo by Marvin Ibo Guengoer/GES-Sportfoto/Getty Images Chelsea chasing Perisic? (Sport1) Former Bayern Munich winger Ivan Perisic has proven himself both in Bavaria and with Inter Milan over the past ... Read more »

Sydney added to S5000, TCR Australia schedules

© Daniel Kalisz James Golding Both the S5000 and TCR Australia calendars were initially listed with a TBC for a May event, which was expected to take place at the ... Read more »

'Almost 800 top police officials collectively earn R1 billion annually'

© Provided by 702 The South African Police Service (SAPS) has almost 200 generals and more than 600 brigadiers collectively earning around R1 billion annually. The head of justice and ... Read more »

‘PM calls in military'

A round-up of the headlines from the UK front pages The Times said Boris Johnson is planning to put the military in charge of reducing the number of migrant boats ... Read more »

Texas rabbi: Security training paid off in hostage standoff

© Provided by Associated Press Law enforcement process the scene in front of the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue, Sunday, Jan. 16, 2022, in Colleyville, Texas. A man held hostages for ... Read more »

Odisha logs 10,489 new COVID-19 cases, 3 more fatalities

Odisha on Monday recorded 10,489 new COVID-19 cases, 688 less than the previous day, with the tally mounting to 11,44,401, a health department bulletin said. The death toll rose 8,484 ... Read more »

The Last of Us Voice Actor, Troy Baker, Facing Widespread Fan Backlash For Supporting NFT Project

© Provided by Geek Culture Seems like, at every turn, there is a new celebrity getting into non-fungible tokens (NFTs). And without fail, each time that happens, there will be ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic