Leaving a lasting impression after the real estate close is essential. The trick is to take an ordinary gift idea and boost it to a whole new – memorable level.
If your real estate closing gift ideas are a bit ho-hum, here’s a list of ideas that can supercharge your gift-giving slump. In true GGS fashion, I am here to help you avoid giving those bad closing gifts and help you leave the lasting impression of a realtor rock star.
Closing gifts means saying, “We value you as a customer!” To avoid any closing gift faux pas, check out closing gift etiquette. Don’t forget to attach to your closing gift the perfect realtor thank-you note. To learn more about the advantages and psychology to giving closing gifts, refer to “Why Realtors Give Closing Gifts.”
Cutting boards: top choice for the perfect closing gift
Realtors have an obsession with cutting board closing gifts. Real estate agents are pretty sure that they make the perfect closing gift.
I will admit that laser-engraved cutting boards look sharp. A custom-etched piece of wood with the client’s last name, initial, and short housewarming quote looks beautiful.
Realtors love them as a “wow” gift. It’s hard to resist adorably cute cutting boards, such as the one offered by CustomFastGifts on Etsy. The engraved cutting board says “HOME” but includes an image of the state where the “o” would be. “Home” and state shapes have been wildly popular on cutting boards.
Similarly, consider a personalized charcuterie board. There’s one on Etsy that looks like a Swiss army knife, no kidding. Now ask yourself, as neat as it is, how many times of the year will you use it? I love my charcuterie boards, but it’s only for holidays.
RealtyRemembered.com recognized that many of their clients were laser engraving their products. The beans have been spilled, folks; you are overdosing on engraving. Engraving your logo is a tax write-off, but at least do so on the back of the cutting board. Even though your clients like you, they don’t want to constantly be reminded of you daily.
The same goes for engraving knives. I will remind you of the Golden Rule and do unto others as you would to yourself. So… do you really want to keep a knife in the drawer that has advertising on it?
Personalized and useful client gifts
Personalizing for the sake of the customer is a different matter. There are some custom gifts that make good sense to clients who will be expecting an address change:
- rubber stamp with new address
- personalized home address stickers
- dog I.D. tag with new address
- custom door mats – personalized, or with initial on
Practical closing gifts for real estate clients
Here’s a thought: a personal closing gift could actually be a burden to the new homeowner. Let’s ponder that. Giving more “stuff” to people who are in the process of packing up “stuff’ and then unloading their “stuff” is… kinda not thoughtful.
It’s hard to believe, but presenting a practical closing gift could make you more memorable with your clients.
Drumroll for the most practical closing gifts:
- fire extinguisher
- door mats
- gifts for the kitchen
- a gift basket of cleaning products
- pre-paid pest spray
- a free re-key of their new home
- dog-walking service
- pay to have buyers duct work cleaned
- personal concierge service (help with unpacking, organizing, grocery shopping, running errands and help with setting up service calls and sit in for all installs)
When is a practical gift too practical?
Some realtors consider a home warranty a good gift. This covers various items in the home if they should break, such as the furnace. As practical as this is, it’s not a gift that leaves the new owner with a warm and fuzzy feeling.
Realtors have picked up on this. There are some practical gifts that a new homeowner gets giddy about, like a new tool set. Remember Tim the Tool Man? The sweet spot is a handy and useful gift that leaves the client thankful for years to come.
Technology closing gifts for the home
Smart home gadgets are often well-received technology closing gifts. As in all gifts, make sure to get a read on your client if this gift will be gladly accepted. For those less-tech enthusiastic, scope out simple technology that is user-friendly.
- Echo Dot home hub
- indoor security cameras
- Nest Learning Thermostat
- smart light switch
- smart sprinkler system controller
- smart meat thermometer
- doorbell cameras
Closing gift baskets
There are people who are really, really good at giving the perfect closing gift basket. They’re like gift basket ninjas! Who doesn’t like to poke and peek to see all the goodies inside? Hey, it’s not only me, I’ve seen plenty of guys dig through baskets with excitement.
Giving a good closing gift basket comes with experience. It says you’ve taken the time to get to know your clients. Personalizing a gift basket begins with tucking in items between the oranges, coffee, and chocolates that are unique to the client.
Start by personalizing with a few items that are unique to the client. Maybe they like to read mysteries, love to garden, enjoy biking, or have other pastimes.
Remember the kids! Make them feel special with their gift basket, including backyard games, a kid’s picnic table set, or fun pocket games. Parents will be thankful for the distraction that will help keep the mood light when dealing with moving in. One dealer included the kids by adding sparkling cider and plastic champagne glasses to “toast” the new home. Love this idea!
Practical gift baskets for real estate clients
One realtor reported that their “goodie” closing baskets slowly transformed into more practical themes. Giving the home owner things that were immediately needed ended up being a better choice of closing gift. Some realtors reported that practical gifts garnished more positive feedback.
Here are some practical gift baskets:
- home survival kit
- laundry basket or cleaning caddy filled with cleaning supplies, notespads, pens, toilet paper, dish soap, trash bags
- move in convenience snacks: a small cutting board, a box of crackers, a nice block of cheese, and paper plates, forks, and glasses
Closing gift cards
Closing gift cards have been a long-time reliable thank-you present for realtors everywhere. Even these popular items can be done better. Take the time to listen to your client’s wants, needs, and interests.
Listen to clues, such as do they have a favorite store? Do they love to go out to eat? Have they listed what they plan to fix up on the house? How about a hobby?
If you want to upgrade your gift card game, include a list of your favorite things to buy from each place so your clients know where to start!
Home improvement gift cards. This is a fitting choice if the new homeowner plans on repairs, is a do-it-yourselfer, or intends to flip the house. Gift cards to Home Depot or Lowe’s are standard.
Landscaping service. New homeowners may have their eye on outside improvements, too. Having someone highly recommend lawn care services is always a comfort, especially when you are new to the area.
Restaurants and coffee shops. Introduce the clients to the cuisine of the area. Be the first to share the hot spots and favorites. Let them know which ones have the best wifi. Those insider secrets will make you fondly remembered.
One realtor makes arrangements for a local restaurant to make an exclusive customer discount in the realtor’s. They can then present a coupon/discount book with thoughtful notes. “Coupons” are a bit frowned upon, but it has the custom touch and works in this case!
Breweries, wineries, or ciders. All of these mini-beverage experiences add up to the full-on local charm.
Dessert or ice cream shops. Here’s a twist (or ice cream twist?). Is there a famed local dessert bar in the area? Homeowners will want to reward themselves (several times!) throughout the moving-in process. It’s stressful, and little treats like ice cream or chocolate shops give a welcome break.
Moving costs. Consider a gift certificate clients can use toward their moving expenses.
Handyman gift card. Sure, a gift card to a home improvement store is thoughtful, but how about giving access to the handyman instead? In my nearby town are two guys who will provide home maintenance services you need. They will even hang pictures for you! Any clients would have no problem quickly using up this gift card.
Experience gift cards.
- tickets to see a local sports team
- membership pass to a local museum or attraction
- wildlife tours/zoos
- amusement parks
- water park pass, pool membership
More on gift cards for your realtor gifts
If you have a good vibe about the client’s interest, go for a seasonal or year-long pass. Remember to keep gifts kid-friendly. If you’re gifting for a family with kids, choose an attraction that the whole family can enjoy, like a zoo or a kid-friendly museum.
It never hurts to cover the basics. Suppose you can’t get a read on someone. In that case, a simple card of appreciation, thanks, and gift cards to nearby restaurants and coffee shops around town will always suffice.
Choose a closing gift that is useful and highly fitting for your clients’ needs. These sensible gifts tell your client that you are thinking about their future needs and that you are still thinking about them long after the sale.
Aerial view closing gift ideas
Never in a million years would I have thought of this one. The aerial view closing gift idea comes from a realtor who lived in an island town. The availability of a tourist helicopter made it an easy gift. The client received a half-hour flight to view their property and the perspective of the overall topography.
Check around to see if a local pilot will do this. If you are looking for a unique gift, this will surely be memorable!
Artwork for a unique closing gift
One thing you can give a new homeowner a unique closing gift that they don’t have is an artist’s picture of the client’s new home. It doesn’t get more one-of-a-kind than this!
Your custom gift can be a pencil sketch, pen, ink, watercolor, etc. It’s easy enough to send a picture digitally to an Etsy.com artist. Don’t limit your imagination to canvas or paper; the image can be added to a flowerpot, slate roof tile, etc.
Photo credit, Don O’Brien, Flickr. “The artist, Charles Gasche, was born in Wooster, Ohio in 1846 or 1847 and became a well-known fresco artist. Later, working for the Caldwell publishing firm from 1873-1875 as a “sketcher”, his meticulous drawings of local landmarks and farm scenes were published in the 1873 Caldwell’s Atlas of Wayne County and of the City of Wooster Ohio. “In 1876, Charles Gasche began painting elaborate “pictorial decoration” on the interior of the Quinby Opera House in Wooster. It was completed the following year. “Gasche’s sketches can also be found in the Ashland County and Holmes County atlases.” Wayne County Historical Society of Ohio.
If you still like the original art idea, how about a gift certificate for a custom portrait, their choice! This can include a client and pet portrait or a photo of the couple in front of their new home (Fido can be in this picture, too!).
Here are some Etsy artists who specialize in home portraits:
A simple gift with a significant impact is a framed outline of the state the client is moving to. A heart icon marking the location of a client’s new home will surely bring a smile.
Give a gift with a story or local connection to an artist. A husband and wife team in my area makes breathtaking kaleidoscopes that the market worldwide.
Real estate agents who donate to charity
Many clients are in tune with real estate agents who donate to charity. I had a local builder choose to contribute in the name of their clients to the nonprofit I worked for. The husband and wife were thoughtful and hoped other businesses would follow suit.
A card was created with the official logo of our nonprofit. The owner calculated the yearly donation total on a percentage of the clients’ spending. Every year I would merge the message and print the cards out, and then give them back to the owner to send out herself.
The message read:
Thank you for your business in 20xx!
We would like to thank you for your business by shedding a light on the life of a child. Because of YOU our annual donation of $xxx is being made to ______________ mentoring program. This gift will connect local youth to role models, giving them opportunities they may never have had.
Merry Christmas and
Best Wishes in the New Year!
NAME OF COMPANY
How novel is this? Another mission that aligns with realtors is Habitat for Humanity. The Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity suggested that realtors give a closing gift that helps the community. They encourage agents to send a donation in their client’s name after the closing.
Client food gifts
Who would turn food down? There are so many client food gift options here, both online and locally. If possible, always go with the local option; if you can tie in a good story with it, you have rooted yourself in your client’s memory.
- locally roasted coffee
- locally brewed beer or wine
- premium cuts of meat, high-quality steaks
- certificate to a stone-fired pizza
- unique eating event, like pitch-fork fondue
- fancy meal in a nice restaurant
- chocolate-covered strawberries
- premium gourmet food basket
Make sure to take note of food allergies or alcohol preferences of your clients.
Meal Service: Moving is stressful, and a client’s last worry is running to the grocery store. Give them the gift of a meal service like HelloFresh. With all the ingredients shipped straight to their door and ready to be cooked, it’ll take the guesswork and stress out of post-move meal planning.
Local client food gifts show client appreciation
Finding a gift that supports small businesses around the area will surely add to the thoughtfulness of the present. Being the first one to introduce your new client to the best of the area is a great way to be remembered by them.
You could purchase a wine from a local winery or vineyard or a gift basket from a local chocolatier. Whatever you choose, be creative! The important part is finding items with deep connections to the local area and to package them into a special closing gift your clients will never forget. Maybe you know of a shop the locals prefer, or the best mom-and-pop cafe.
Just a few miles away from me is a family dairy making yummy ice cream. Visit the local farmer’s markets to forge a relationship with a regional grower – not only will you get wholesome food, but you can also, again, tie in a good story! Think about your favorite shops around town and their specialty, and go from there!
House closing gift ideas with a focus on history
There are so many neat historical slants that you can put on a closing gift.
- a custom history poster about the new property
- framed map of the client’s hometown
- locate original photos of the original exterior, copy and frame it
- collect local history on the property to provide to the new home owner
Property management binder for real estate files
Just as helpful as a welcome book is a property management binder. A lot of paperwork will be generated with the purchase of a new home. Let an Etsy creator do the work for you! Many sellers offer printable home management downloads. All you have to do is print them off and add them to a tabbed binder.
Things to include for a real estate management binder:
- listing of the house
- house pictures
- business card holders
- special notes on the property
- maintenance section
- suggested repair/home maintenance services in the area
- your contact information and business card
Congratulations! You have provided your clients a convenient landing place to keep all important papers together. No doubt, they will be reaching for it again and again. That is an excellent way to be remembered!
If the property is resold, these hard-working binders can even be handed over to a future buyer. The beauty is that once you set this up, it’s easy to recreate for prospective clients.
Welcome kits, a perfect closing gift
If you have a client new to the region or community, this is almost a must. You bet I would remember you as a client! Great welcome kits should contain:
- directional guide
- map of how to get to work, churches, etc.
- welcome to the neighborhood guide
- list of things to do in the area, farmer’s markets, etc.
- list of restaurants, stores, schools, churches, etc.
- historical and tourist highlights of the area
You might want to check with the local chamber of commerce first, as they may already have some welcome to the community basket. If so, fantastic. You can find a way to compliment what they are already doing or go in another direction.
Photo books of home building
Consider a photo book of the build process for new home owners buying a spec house. You can capture the “Sold!” sign in the front and stages of the build process. These pictures are indeed something that the owner would appreciate.
Luxury closing gifts
Luxury real estate deals should be treated in their own special category when it comes to closing gifts. Some suggestions that can bump up a luxury closing gift:
- smart-home tech gadgets
- high quality cutting boards such as https://www.markandgraham.com/
- high-end kitchenware
- fine crystal, like Tiffany. Crystal cocktail glasses were a hit with one client!
- fine writing instruments, such as Visconti Van Gogh Fountain Pen
Resources for realtor gifts for clients
Sources for realtor closing gifts:
A realtor gift is a bonding experience, acknowledging the journey you’ve shared with the client. If done right, it will leave a lasting impression on them. As one successful realtor put it, “The majority of my clients are clients for life!”