The Closing Gift: How Loan Officers Can Be Revered or Reviled

Imagine. It’s the Christmas season. The extended family is gathered in the living room. Uncle Jim hands you a sleek looking package in penguin themed wrapping paper, you eagerly tear it open, and . . . it’s a wall clock with his mortgage company’s logo in the middle. “Now whenever you check the time, you’ll remember where to call if you ever need a home loan,” Uncle Jim says.

“Yes, yes I will,” you reply, feeling uncomfortable.

People don’t buy each other gifts disguised as product placement tools. Closing gifts shouldn’t be any different. Here are some closing gift ideas that make loan officers stand out long after closing, without turning their client’s new home into an advertisement.

  • A Night On the Town – New homeowners get to know their home very well before closing. Their new neighborhood may be a different story. A gift card to a locally adored restaurant or shop can go a long way to make newbies feel at home, even when they aren’t home.  If insider information is lacking, use tools like Yelp or Foursquare.  
  • Personalized Household Items – While knife sets, wine glasses and pillows are all the rage, the BEST closing gifts are the ones with a personal touch. For example, if a customer once mentioned how she loves bagels, get her the preeminently convenient (and safe) bagel guillotine. Closing gift masters can immortalize themselves in the minds of their customers, by simply remembering tidbits of personal information that come up throughout their dealings.
  • Provide Options – While some customers make loan officers feel like biographers, others will surely be more introverted. There are a few amazing sites to accommodate the latter type. One is loopandtie.com, which allows recipients to choose everything from spice kits, to a Sock Club subscription (way cooler than it sounds), to hundreds of other items sorted by category and price. Another great site is Quarterly.co, which will send a mystery box curated by celebrities like Pharrell Williams, Bill Nye the Science Guy, and Jeremy Lin (hopefully it’s not a hair kit, but we don’t know, and that’s the beauty of it).

One final piece of closing gift advice is to keep timing in mind. The loan officer with the greatest idea in closing gift history may have sent it when the new house was still a chaotic mess of moving boxes. Give customers a month or two to get settled in. That way, the gift doesn’t get overlooked in the moving madness, plus the loan officer resurfaces to the top of the homeowner’s mind well after closing.

Remember, the closing gift is just that; a gift. Have fun with it.



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