Paying it Forward and Closing Gifts...huh?

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775

There have been a slew of "Paying it Forward" posts and they are inspiring.  I thought I might share one of my own creations and solve a problem at the same time.  The problem of closing gifts, should you, could you, would you kind of conversations you have with yourself.

First of all, it goes without saying that I believe in closing you have to "buy" into that first, no pun intended!

But, my days of buying pictures of their houses, various types of baskets and restaurant certificates were over about two years ago.  It was a combination of my heart and wanting to still do something special for my clients.Give to a Charity

So, what I do is let each client choose a charity of their choice and then I donate 5-10% of my commissions to that charity in their honor.  In the beginning I didn't mark out my address on the checks and after awhile I was getting "please consider giving" brochures from 20 or so different charities!  I already have my favorites!

Over the years the big winners have been Susan G Komen, Riley Pediatric Hospital, American Heart Association and the local Humane Society.  Odd I know, but the Humane Society is one of my favorites too!

There have been others that I had never heard of and when I asked my client to share why this charity, I learned so much.  One of those was the Celiac Organization, my client actually has this disease but you would never know it to look at her!

This week the check went to St Jude Hospital in Memphis; that is the third time for that organization.

So the next time you are at a loss on what to do for a closing gift, consider a gift of charity.  The look on my client's face when I tell them I need the name of their favorite charity to make a donation to is priceless.  And I can tell you there has never been any hesitation with my clients, they ALL have had a favorite.

*Editors NoteI do not write this post as a pat on my back...I will be forever grateful only if my reward is in heaven.  But I do write to participate in the Pay it Forward Group and to maybe inspire somebody with something easy to do to make a difference.

Geist Waterfront Homes for Sale and Real Estate       Geist Indiana Real Estate Home Values

 Cindy "in Indy" Marchant - Geist Real Estate Agent
Keller Williams Realty Indy Metro NE
Geist IN Real Estate Website

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John Combs
Alan Deblat Real Estate Corp. - Oceanside, NY

That is such a great idea. Celiac is a terrible disease and often underdiagnosed.

Nov 06, 2010 06:50 AM #1
Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Cindy~  I like your idea if donating to a charity of the clients choice instead of giving them closing gift. I would think that the American Cancer Society would be one that would pop up.  I do have mixed feelings about giving a closing gift in the first place, but to each his own!

Nov 06, 2010 06:55 AM #2
Connie Goodrich
Keller Williams Realty - McKinney, TX
CRS ABR (McKinney Realtor)Texas

Very great thing you do and meaningful to those you touch.  I also like to extend my gift giving to the buyers of my listings ... just a little thank you for purchasing the home, a welcome to the area, just a little thought.  This has been well received.  Wonderful and warm thoughts you shared.

Nov 06, 2010 06:55 AM #3
Jen Edwards
RE/MAX Unlimited - Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
Broker Associate

I love the idea and often find myself in that situation. P.S. I didn't see this as patting yourself on the back.  :)


Nov 06, 2010 06:55 AM #4
Bill Gillhespy
16 Sunview Blvd - Fort Myers Beach, FL
Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos

Hi Cindy,  I'm one of those not really into closing gifts but I do try to do something for my clients after the sale.  It is different in most cases.  One of the most appreciated is to simply watch their place when thay arn't here: storms, renters or such.

Nov 06, 2010 06:59 AM #5
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

I like the idea of donating to a charity of the buyers preference...

Nov 06, 2010 07:40 AM #6
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Cindy, It's one of our standard things at RE/MAX, $25 to Children's Miracle Network...obviously no where near as sustantial as your gifts!  Nice work!

Nov 06, 2010 08:06 AM #7
Cindy Marchant
Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 - Carmel, IN
"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate

John...funny I linked this today I think I know someone close to me that may have it!  So...things happen in unusual ways sometimes.

Vickie...the American Cancer Association is another big one for my clients.

Connie, that is a great idea also!

Jen, thank you. is true that giving moneyis easier than giving time and that is what you are giving, kudo's to you!

Michael a.k.a Dr. Watson...its an idea that keeps on giving for sure. anything makes a difference, and to the children is always worthwhile!

Nov 06, 2010 08:26 AM #8
Donna Foerster
HomeSmart Realty Group - Parker, CO
Metro Denver Real Estate Assistant

What a terrific idea.  Often times I struggle with an "appropriate gift".  You've solved my challenge AND inspired me!

Nov 06, 2010 09:33 AM #9
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Cindy, This is way cool. Our brokerage has a foundation. I make a small contribution to the foundation directly from escrow. During the holidays I make a contribution to the Humane Society … my favorite charity … in honor of all my clients. There are so many different ways we can pay-it-forward.

Nov 06, 2010 10:34 AM #10
Melanie Ross
Coldwell Banker Solano Pacific - Benicia, CA
Benicia CA & Vallejo CA Real Estate, 707-319-2828

I am sure you have learned about about many needy charities with this quest.  Our local WF lender donates money to a buyers charity also.  Our clients were thrilled!

Nov 06, 2010 12:20 PM #11
JoAnn Moore
The Mortgage Market of Delaware - Georgetown, DE
Home Loans in Delaware

Very nice indeed. It's a way to give something of value to your clients that mean something. It isn't something that is going to miss the mark; be something that the clients don't like.

Nov 06, 2010 01:08 PM #12
Cindy Marchant
Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 - Carmel, IN
"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate

Donna, happy to have obliged!

Kathleen...I love the Humane Society too.

Melanie...I have learned a lot about various charities for sure.

JoAnn...I have actually had people choose me because they know about this aspect of me and want that kind of agent.

Nov 06, 2010 03:17 PM #13
Hillary Kinnison
Keller Williams Coastal Realty - Dover, NH

I love this idea & will certainly be "borrowing" it!

Nov 06, 2010 03:37 PM #14
'The Diamond Group' 'A Cut Above The Rest'
The Diamond Group @ Keller Williams - Lubbock, TX
Lubbock Texas Real Estate

Cindy that is one of my favorite gifts too!  I usually choose AIA..........Agents in Action which is a charity like KW cares and distributes all funds into Lubbock itself or for disasters like Katrina, etc.  I also like the idea of letting the client have a choice .............if I can let go of my control issues.

Nov 06, 2010 04:40 PM #15
Ellie Penaranda
239.776.5077 Downing-Frye Realty - Naples, FL
Naples Florida Real Estate - Waterfront & Beach Co

Cindy, you've inspired us all, excellent idea.  I have a favorite charity here in Naples (Options - for abused women and children) and hope some of my clients choose it.  They really do outstanding work.

Nov 08, 2010 02:02 PM #16
Cindy Marchant
Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 - Carmel, IN
"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate

Hillary, borrow away!

Nov 08, 2010 02:10 PM #17
Cindy Marchant
Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 - Carmel, IN
"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate

Elizabeth...this is an easy "control" issue to let go still GET to write the check!  lol

Nov 08, 2010 02:10 PM #18
Cindy Marchant
Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 - Carmel, IN
"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate

Ellie...I hope I have inspired some ...that was my intent for sure!

Nov 08, 2010 02:11 PM #19
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Cindy Marchant

"Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate
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