The 16 Worst Real Estate Closing Gifts

And why they suck

The closing gift is a Real Estate tradition that has been around since the beginning of time. Or it seems like it anyway. Given all the years the industry has had to get good at it, it’s surprising that many still can’t nail it. Most Real Estate closing gifts are impersonal at best and plain thoughtless at worst.

The main problem is that many Real Estate professionals don’t know they’re getting it wrong. This creates copycats and repeat offenders. And the cycle continues. Bad Real Estate gifts are so common, and follow such similar patterns, we can (and have) put them into categories.

So, on the scale of worst to best closing gifts, where do yours rank? Let’s take a closer look at some of the worst REALTOR® gifts for clients that we’ve seen. Anything look familiar?

Worst Real Estate closing gifts category 1: Don’t [insert name here]

You’ve been with your clients every step of the way to guide them across the finish line of purchasing their new home. It’s a big moment, and it’s tempting to make the interaction about you. But put yourself in your client’s shoes. Especially if they’re a first-time homeowner, it has probably been longer, scarier, and more expensive than they thought it would be.

You’ve spent months together, and you’ve had every opportunity to get to know them, to listen to their interests, stressors, and needs. Now imagine their initial smile at seeing a delivery from you. The expectation rises that you understand and know what they like and what they’ve been through.

These good feelings take a turn when they are left holding one of the notoriously bad Real Estate gifts that too often make the rounds. The worst offenders to top our list are the barely veiled marketing tools masquerading as gifts. Examples include:

1. Refrigerator magnets are useful and can be a great gift, but they cease to be so when plastered with your contact information and face.

2. Everyone needs a good cutting board. No one needs one with your name, number, and logo.

3. Similarly, chef’s knives are common closing gifts. A nice set is perfect for your cooking-enthusiast client, but they become back-of-the-drawer-clutter when engraved with your name, logo, and website.

4. A cozy blanket embroidered with, yep, your name and logo is a much worse gift than a plain one or one monogrammed with your client’s initials.

5. A scented candle with a color photo of you and your name and phone number crookedly stuck over the existing label is going straight to the back of the cupboard.

6. Something pricey and generic, like a crystal paperweight or a fancy pen, emblazoned with your name and contact information is an extra offense—a waste of money and space.

When you make gifts for others all about yourself, it sends a clear message. And that message does not leave a good impression. You work in a referral-based business, which makes you feel like your name and contact info need to be everywhere all the time. But your clients will remember you more for a gift that at least appears to be less self-serving.

Learn more about the ins and outs of Real Estate gifting and how it’s done right. And get there before your competition does. Because thoughtful gifting quickly and drastically changes the game.

Worst Real Estate closing gifts category 2: A total waste of timing

So, your client has just closed on their new home. This is the time they’ll most likely be talking about you to their friends, acquaintances, hair stylist, Pilates instructor, dog park buddies, and everyone else in their orbit. You want to make this time count. Don’t blow it with a bad gift given at the wrong time.

7. Self-assembled gifts are never great, but especially now. The last thing your clients want to do after the stress of buying and moving into their new home is to break out the tool kit and put together furniture or appliances. Spare them the effort.

8. Coupons are not a gift. Yeah, we didn’t think we’d have to say that either. Any gift with an expiration date is not ideal—even more so during a busy time in someone’s life. You may think you’re doing something nice by offering a discount on items they need for their new home, but it comes across as cheap and thoughtless and makes them do the work. Just buy them the thing.

9. Giving a closing gift, never to be heard from again, hurts your business. After working closely together for weeks, months, even years, not following up with your clients after closing is a missed opportunity. When it comes to the best Real Estate gift ideas, think beyond the closing gift. Follow up after a year anniversary, or better yet, three years and beyond. It’s the end of the sale, but not the end of the relationship. 

Client Giant’s unique Real Estate closing gift ideas are not just for closing day. We’ve created a thoughtful, memorable, customizable arc of Real Estate gifts and experiences that complement every step of the process.

If you want to go the extra extra mile, gift above and beyond the homebuying time period and keep your clients Top of Mind without having to think about it yourself. Send unique and memorable “just because” gifts that will give your clients the warmest of warm fuzzies about how much you genuinely care. Inspire passionate referrals so you can be a household name in more than just their household.

Worst Real Estate closing gifts category 3: Good gifting’s in the details

Some gifts are universally lovable and delightful; others can call your thoughtfulness into question. If you ignore the little things, an otherwise good gift becomes a big mistake.

10. What’s in a name? A lot. If you’ve gotten the memo that no one wants merch for your business or a gift with your name on it, good. But if you plan to include your clients’ names or the names of pets or kids on gifts like mugs, blankets, keychains, and more, make sure you’ve got the spelling correct.

11. Personal style misses speak volumes. If your client’s aesthetic is sleek and modern but you come with antiques or rustic home accessories, it becomes clear you haven’t paid attention to their taste.

12. Don’t get their hobbies wrong. A gift that considers the recipient’s interests makes the best kind of gift. Give experiences or supplies that align with the things your clients enjoy. Get it wrong, though, and you risk offending (or confusing) them.

Client Giant’s Elevated Retention Plans feature white glove concierge service that tailors a series of gifts to match your client’s interests and hobbies. It’s the attention to detail that takes you from a decent gifter to next-level thoughtful.

Worst Real Estate closing gifts category 4: It’s the wrong thought that doesn’t count

We’ve all heard, “it’s the thought that counts.” Usually, it helps to explain away a hideous sweater or some other meh gift with an attempt at being gracious. The idea of just the thought may work in some cases, but your Real Estate closing gifts have a lot more riding on them than blind gratitude.

When considering unique Real Estate closing gift ideas, don’t think about the gift first; think about the recipient first. It may seem obvious to avoid these mistakes, but gifts like this happen over and over:

13. A fancy bottle of wine for a client who doesn’t drink

14. A mouthwatering box of gourmet chocolates for those who are calorie-conscious

15. An exotic (and toxic) houseplant for a client who has pets or young children

16. A steakhouse dinner for veggie clients

When you’ve known a client for the better part of a year (or more), you should have filed away some of their likes, dislikes, and lifestyle traits. Take advantage of the opportunity to put those bits of knowledge to work. Because even if you get your vegan client only their second-favorite brand of nut-milk cheese, they’ll be truly charmed that you were paying attention.

We’ve broken down some of the ways Real Estate gifts can go so wrong. Here are a few REALTOR® gifts for clients that can keep your name on the tip of their tongues and the top of their lists long after the keys are in their hands.

  • An “explore the neighborhood” night out on the town if your clients moved to a new area
  • A “first year in your new home” anniversary night in
  • An “under contract” stress-relieving gift to help your client feel at ease
  • Moving boxes, tape, and other supplies when packing is in progress

With Client Giant, your gifts will all have a personal touch, and you’ll find many opportunities to customize and personalize for your specific clients. You can choose from thoughtful options like signed sports memorabilia, a vinyl record from a favorite musician, or even a donation to their most-loved charity with uniquely memorable Real Estate packages.

It’s easy to go from worst to best closing gifts if you remember to be timely, thoughtful, and take your personal brand off the table. Happy gifting!