It’s the season of gift giving! While REALTORS® may be on the hunt for gifts for their family and friends during holiday exchanges, clients also may be on the list this year…especially if a closing is scheduled around the holidays.
As for giving gifts to colleagues or business acquaintances, there may be rules and limitations for gift giving. Talk to your broker about ethics and legalities. You definitely don’t want the holidays to lead to gifts of legal issues!
When REALTORS are on the hunt for holiday-themed closing gifts, though, here are 20 amazing gift ideas for your real estate clients.
1. The Holiday-Themed Gift Basket
Gift baskets are a classic gift. For the holidays, REALTORS can have a lot of fun choosing unique items themed for the holidays. And, yes, to make this even easier, there are companies that sell pre-arranged baskets.
Making one unique to your client? If you don’t know whether your client celebrates Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa, opt for a Happy Holidays or New Year’s themed basket. As for décor, choose snowflakes, snowmen, gingerbread houses, holly (it’s seasonal) or even wintry scenes.
A hot beverage theme makes a great holiday basket. Fill your basket with mugs, different coffees from around the world, flavored creamers, unique teas and biscotti or other sweet biscuits.
Think about creating a basket with items for the home. Create a home improvement basket with tools, gift cards to home stores, garden gloves and other around-the-house must have items. A bathroom basket may include different soaps, bath bombs, hand towels and other items.
What about sweet treats like cookies and candy? Food baskets can become a little bit contentious. Why? Food allergies are becoming quite common. Cookies and candies might include nuts or may have been processed in a factory that isn’t nut-free. Some people are sensitive to gluten. Others have allergies to food dyes. For this reason, avoid gifting foods and baked goods.
2. A Personalized Ornament
Have an ornament printed with a photo of the home and the closing date.
3. A Monthly Membership
Surprise clients with a gift for every month of the first year in their new home. These of-the-month clubs can include plants, flowers, pasta, fruit or even socks!
4. An Engraved Platter
Prepare your clients to host dinners in their new home with a platter engraved or printed with their monogram.
5. Personalized Hand Towels
Gift a variety of seasonal hand towels monogrammed for a personal touch. Choose a theme for each season; flowers for spring, snowmen for winter, leaves/pumpkins for fall and a beach or tropical print for summer.
6. A Welcome Mat
Don’t give a boring welcome mat, create one that’s personalized for your client. This can include a sports theme or perhaps just their name/monogram.
7. A Night Out
The Close recommends gifting a night out. Pay for a nice dinner to a local restaurant for your clients…when it’s safe to dine-in of course!
8. A Watercolor of the Home
Create a watercolor rendering of the home, mat it in a nice frame and gift it to your clients.
9. Throw Pillows
The site Real Estate Client Gifts recommends personalized throw pillows. Add the family’s surname, or list all family members’ names (including the dog/cat) or just monogram it. You also can splurge on a trio—monogram, name list, and last name.
10. Luxury Items
Looking for a closing gift for a high-end buyer? Choose something elegant from Tiffany’s, Louis Vuitton or other luxury names.
11. A Cozy Throw Blanket
Personalize it might be the theme! Have a cozy throw blanket personalized with a photo of the home.
12. Address Stamps
Real Estate Client Gifts also recommends address stamps as a unique gift. You can pair the address stamp with personalized stationery, too. And don’t forget to add a pen (choose something luxe!).
13. Crystal Champagne Flutes
Encourage clients to ring in the New Year in their new home with a beautiful set of crystal champagne flutes. Gift champagne or sparkling grape juice!
14. A Snow Blower
If your business is in a part of the country that battles many seasonal snowstorms, gift a snow blower!
Gift clients some cool technology that they can use to embrace the Internet of Things, like a Google Nest.
16. A Gift of Meals
No, this isn’t the same as gifting food in a gift basket! Instead, splurge on a subscription to a food delivery service for a month. Clients can choose their meals!
17. Something for the Pets
Do clients have furry friends? Gift something for the pets. This can be a gift basket full of toys and treats or maybe a doggy bed (monogram it!).
18. Trip to a Local Attraction
Gift clients tickets to a theme park or other unique local attraction.
19. A Cool Class
Gift a cooking class or an art class.
20. Gift Cards
Not sure what to gift? Purchase gift cards to a favorite store or a home store. These may not be the most personal gift, but they will be appreciated!
Things to Consider…
There are so many options for holiday closing gifts. But REALTORS may have questions as to whether or not a particular gift is appropriate. Alcohol, for example, might be controversial to some. Before gifting professional services (like a landscape architect) to clients, too, chat with your broker to make sure that it’s ok. Scott Umstead goes into detail about issues/legalities associated with various gifts and the real estate industry. Most REALTORS should know the ethical and legal lines of gift giving, however.
The Forgotten Gift?
Covid has caused craziness in its wake. And some of us are just happy if we get the day of the week correct. What if you realize you forget to get a gift for your client’s closing? This happens. Most REALTORS are pretty on top of purchasing a gift, but this year has been far from ordinary.
If that gift slipped your mind, opt for a gift card. Write a nice note and tuck the gift card inside. Or this is where the gift basket becomes a convenient option. You know the address after all! Choose a nice gift basket filled with items your clients will love and have it sent during the holidays. Most clients will welcome the surprise delivery!
What Not to Gift?
Most clients appreciate any gift. However, some closing gifts come across as more of a marketing ploy than an actual kind gesture. Try to avoid giving gifts with your face on them. This includes calendars, mugs, or water bottles. Yes, the thought counts. However, purchasing a home is a huge investment. Try to take time to present a thoughtful gift.
How Much to Spend?
Some REALTORS specialize in a luxury market. For these clients, high-end luxury gifts might be typical…The Close notes Hermes and Tiffany’s as great gifts. Your budget might be limited, so setting a budget is understandable.
Again, the thought counts. If you can’t splurge, try to give a gift with meaning. Monogrammed items are nice and can be found at various price points. Mugs and coffees also are budget-friendly.
And, if you’re really struggling or you simply don’t have time to pick out a personal present, gift cards are a classic and useful gift. Your clients can buy what they need…or what they want! No matter what you gift, don’t forget to tuck in a homeowner’s checklist!