How to write a formal letter: rules and format

How to write a formal letter: rules and format

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Formal letters are used in different fields of life including business and academics. Although, there are many informal practices in the domain of writing, people will prefer a formally written letter over an informal or unedited note. This letter is also expected to follow the particular rules and format. In the following lines, we will take a look at the rules and format that have to be followed while writing a formal letter.

Do not use slang and contractions

Using slang and contractions in formal letters may cause many problems for the writer and the reader alike. The reader will not get the basic idea in the letter and will not take the concerns of the writer seriously. Using slang in the letter will make the formal letter sound informal. Words used in everyday communication such as things, cool, stuff, dude, lame, and fresh, should also be avoided. If a formal letter seems more of a conversation with a friend, it will have to be rewritten. An essay writer may help you in writing the letter in a professional language. You can also use the samples to know about the appropriate language.

Using appropriate greetings

You should not start the letter with greetings like What’s up. The recipient will most likely throw your letter in the trash. If there is a generalized letter that can be applied to many individuals, you can use “To whom it may concern”. There are many letters in which you will be writing to a specific position but you do not know the exact name of the person. You should take care of using gender-neutral salutations. Gender-specific language should only be used when you exactly know the gender of the recipient. Sometimes, when I write my essay, I tend to forget the gender-neutral language formula, but make sure you do not commit the same mistake. Anyhow, luck is with you numerous websites are providing such services to help you. These services can help you in writing a letter both partially or completely.

Essay Writing Tips

Pay attention to the format

You can use any of the following formats to write a formal letter. In a full block format, all the components of the letter will be aligned to the left. This includes heading, address, salutation, body, ending salutations, and signatures. A paper writing service can help you in getting free formats of the formal letters. These will be provided in a non-editable format. The following example will further clarify the block format of the letter.

Heading (your address and date)

Address of the recipient


I have waited long for admission to the ABE fellowship program. This was my dream, ever since I completed my graduation in management sciences. From my research, I have come to know that the fellowship provides extensive interaction with students from different backgrounds and cultures. I am applying for the fellowship because I believe that it will benefit me throughout my career and allow me to learn the application of many new concepts related to my field.

I am a highly goal-oriented person with excellent analytical skills and my specialty lies in the use of capital budgeting techniques. I have worked as a finance intern in a couple of organizations that helped me apply my knowledge.

I believe my experience and skills can make me an appropriate candidate for your program.

I am looking forward to hear from you.



Modified Block Format

The major difference between the full and modified block formats is that your address is written in the right-hand corner of the page. Another difference between the two formats is that the paragraphs are indented in the modified block format. The ending salutation and name also appear on the right bottom of the page.

Signing off politely

Just like the body of a letter, the writers should avoid using an informal tone while signing off. A beautifully written letter with properly strung-together may be ruined by the use of a poor sign-off. When you do not know the recipient personally, you can use sincerely, regards, or yours truly. If you have had some prior communication with the recipient, you can use yours respectfully, kind regards, etc. You should avoid words like take care, cheers, or see you later. While signing off, the first word starts with a capital letter whereas the second letter starts with a lower-case letter and there is always a comma after the second word.

Keep the letter short

No one will have the time to read a letter that is five pages long. If you want the reader to take your letter seriously, keep it to a single page. This rule will allow the communication of your point to the other party simply and straightforwardly. There should be a list points of that have to be communicated to the recipient to avoid any confusion. When you write your letter, you should use a font like Times New Roman size 12 or 10. Single spacing is more preferred as compared to double. All the essential parts of the letter should have appropriate space before and after them.

Proofread the letter

It is important to check the letter for spellings of the names as well as spelling throughout the body of the letter. There should be no typing errors. The dates and their formats should be checked. Punctuation and grammar also plays an important part in improving the readability of the letter.

Punctuation errors can result in a change in the reaction from the recipients. 

 Usefull Resources!

Key features of a triumphant affirmation essay

Things to know before you contact an essay writing service

key differences between a formal and informal letter

What Understudies Needs to Find out About Annotated Book index

Key highlights of a triumphant insistence essay

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