Once you’ve helped a buyer or seller see a home purchase or sale through to closing, you may want to thank them with a celebratory gift. Or you may want to give a year-end gift to a business associate to show your appreciation for their support. How can an agent give gifts without violating rules against offering gifts for referrals? By choosing carefully, an agent can give a thoughtful gift that complies with the rules. Here are some ideas for appropriate thank-you gifts.
Gifts to thank business associates and colleagues
Gifts to business associates and colleagues must follow regulations under state and federal law. This is true whether the gift is directly financial or an object of value, particularly if the recipient is a source of leads. If you’re unsure whether a gift idea is acceptable, talk to your broker or to a representative from your local Board of REALTORS®. Do the same if you have a question about whether you should accept a gift.
Gifts to thank clients
After closing, gifts to clients are legally and ethically acceptable and are common practice. Be sure to show your client your gratitude with a brief note of heartfelt thanks on nice stationery or a stylish card. If you want to do more, here are some ideas your clients might enjoy.
- Gift cards are universally practical. What client wouldn’t enjoy unwinding over a nice meal at a local restaurant or spending an afternoon at a day spa? If your clients are first-time homebuyers, they might appreciate a gift card to a home improvement or furniture store.
- Items for a buyer’s new home make a nice gift. Consider a monogrammed welcome mat for the front porch, an attractive flag for the garden or potted plants to bring freshness to the new interior. Other options are a clock or desk accessories for a client’s home office.
- Kitchen gifts are always welcome. A coffee grinder, a nice set of knives, attractive coffee mugs or something similar are nice choices.
- Gifts such as a fruit or other food basket are a tasty way to show your thanks. Make sure, however, that no one in the client’s family has a food allergy.
- An electronic gift such as a new Ring doorbell monitor shows your gratitude and provides the client with home security. Another useful electronic gift is a digital picture frame.