Advice

Getting Unsolicited Offers from Neighbors

My weird neighbor left an index card in a zip lock baggie under my windshield with a note saying he wants to buy my car (no price indicated) and his phone number. I am not trying to sell my car and have never given him any reason to think I am. Can I just throw this note away?

You all have some interesting neighbors. First there was the neighbor pushing a questionable service who wanted an unearned review; next there was the neighbor who won’t take no (friendship) for an answer. Hopefully these aren’t all the same neighborhood (or people).

You are not obligated to respond to unsolicited offers to buy your stuff; you are not being a jerk if you ignore this note. However, since you mention that this is likely from your weird neighbor, if you want to keep the peace and avoid future awkward encounters, you can send a simple text to the number that says “Thank you for the note; we are not looking to sell our car right now.”

Of course, if they don’t already have your phone number, perhaps you don’t want to give it to them (totally understandable). Also, that number might be a land line (yes, they still exist, and also, they might work better than your cell phone in an emergency so don’t judge) and so not accept texts. In either case, another option is to write on the back of the note that you are not planning on selling your car at this time, and then return the note to their mailbox.

If you throw the note away, it’s possible your neighbor will take it as a sign that you aren’t interested; however, if he’s odd enough to think a note on a car that isn’t for sale makes sense, he might keep trying. Responding is a quick way to end the conversation and make your intentions clear.

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