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Gift Giving & Ethics

So I'm on the lookout for a home to buy and have been out once with my Realtor already. I think I found one I like, but it's going to be a hassle as it's a short sale in need of repairs and if I go through with it I'll be going FHA 203k, etc. Anyway, the list price is pretty low and I feel like my Realtor will be working pretty hard for a pretty paltry commission. Is it appropriate to give the Realtor some sort of gift/thank you for their time? I was a lousy Realtor once upon a time (and not for very long) and remember what a pain it could be to do all this stuff and never sell anything. I also remember there was some rule about things you could accept payment for and things that were services or something. For instance, a Realtor can't charge  you to look up the tax information on a home, but there were some services they could charge for. What do you think? Does this happen? Is it common or should I forget about it?
  • May 10 2012 - Dekalb
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Answers (5)

I don't think about gifts from clients when helping them find a home.  The best gift you can give a Realtor is a testimonial to help them obtain new clients, and give them some good word of mouth advertising or refer a friend or coworker. 
  • May 10 2012
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Profile picture for u6crash
Good point. Unfortunately for my Realtor, I'm something of a social outcast and few of my coworkers have it together enough to buy a home.
  • May 10 2012
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Whatever you give, she will have to turn over to her broker first. Then she'll get her share. Keep that in mind when you're deciding what to give. Maybe a box of chocolates or something small? Just to show your appreciation.
  • May 10 2012
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That is very thoughtful of you to consider giving your Realtor a gift. This can be a very thankless job at times. You don't have to spend much to show her your appreciation. Bake cookies or brownies for her. Better yet, write her a great review so she can earn more business. Good Luck :)
  • May 10 2012
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As they say, the best give is a good recommendation; but is not ilegal to provide additional commission to your relator. It just has to be done the legal way. This means you give the commission through the broker.
 
I am sure your realtor will be very appreciative.
  • May 11 2012
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