Addressing a business letter properly is important to appear as a professional and create a solid start to a letter. A business letter addressed incorrectly shows that the writer is either lazy or uneducated. A business letter is not like writing a letter to a friend and should be addressed differently. Business letters always follow a format that's easy to replicate after writing one or two. Save the business letter to your computer and replace the information to create a template for future letters.
Write the sender's address and receiver's address in a 12-point font in an easy-to-read font type such as Times New Roman. Programs like Microsoft Office offer a letter wizard and templates with proper formatting In Microsoft Office 2010, select the "File" button and then click "New" and either create a new letter or open a template.
Use company letterhead that includes your name and address to write the letter. If no letterhead is available, write your complete address aligned to the left at the top of the letter including street address, city and ZIP code.
Write the date two inches from the top, aligned to the left. If using company letterhead, the date appears below the letterhead. If just typing your address, the date goes directly underneath your address. If you write the letter over a couple of days, write the date the letter was finished. Write out the month and include the year. For example, a letter written on June 30 of 2009, would be dated June 30, 2009.
Write the recipient's address below the date, left justified. Include the specific title and name for the person you're writing. Write the address in U.S. Postal Service format.
Write a salutation below the address. This is usually Dear (the person used in the address). Write to the person's first name only if you know them well, otherwise, use Mr., Mrs., Ms. or Dr. If unsure of the person's gender, write only the person's first and last name. Use "To Whom it May Concern" as the salutation if you don't have a specific name for the receiver. Use a colon after the salutation.
Kristine Brite worked as a community journalist and public relations specialist before moving onto freelance writing. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Indiana University and has six years of professional writing experience.