The best gift will be something you personally know the client will like! So, pay attention when working with them, and ask questions. If they like wine... well, that's an easy one. If they like a sports team, how about some tickets?
I had a client tell me they were interesting in learning how to brew beer... so my gift was a beer brewing kit for $25... get creative.
Interesting, I see that in some states it may be a violation of their real estate laws to give a client anything of value. I question if this is so? What about zip realty? What about redfin? as two examples. Do they do business in your state of Oregon?
In Massachusetts an agent can give a party (buyer or seller) of the transaction anything they want. So if you wanted to give your buyer 100% of the fee it is allowed.
I use to, but now I just get them the house they want at the best price I can, or get the seller I represent the most money I can. And let them rest assured they are getting the most professional service available and that no detail is overlooked.
When was the last time your Attorney, Doctor, Accountant, Insurance Agent gave you a gift?
I think house warming gifts are a customary tradition in our society in general, and as we are a part of the act of buying the new house it is appropriate for Realtors to do. its not at all the same as comparing to dr.s accountants etc.
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I think it is interesting that real estate is a business where gifts are given to clients.
Louis had an interesting comment along those lines.
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My gift normally depends upon the individual. Many buyers in my area are purchasing second homes or investment properties and close from abroad. Those clients I send gift cards to (master, visa, etc)
I also frequent a local gourmet food and wine deli that custom makes me awesome gift baskets. And gift cards to some great local area restaurants to new comers. At the end of a stressful sale, funds have hit the bank, the sweating and nervous stomach subsided, the gift giving is definitely a fun part I truly enjoy.
A good agent will continue a relationship after the transaction just in case something comes up after a few months; who else is better to advise.
Prudential California Realty
Beverly Hills, CA
If they're moving to Leominster, I usually give them a $50 gift certificate to "Central St. Meats & Deli" a local butcher shop.
If they need to do work on the house, $50 gift certificate to Lowes or HD.
If they like DD or Starbucks, then a $50 gift card.
If I come across something I know they need or would love, then I do that. I sold a small horse farm once and gave them a chainsaw carved horse head - they loved it.
Licensed Mortgage Planner
Regency Mortgage Corp.