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Michele Blanco's Blog

How You Can Conduct a Closing in Your Office
by Michele Blanco | 2020/05/11 |


Many states have “Stay at Home Orders” that have made one-on-one interactions with clients next to impossible. You want to protect yourself, your clients, and your associates, but you also have to keep business moving forward. What can you do?

Let’s take a look at some of the strategies title agents are using right now to keep operations moving forward. You can conduct a closing – safely – in your office or on the road.

Michele Blanco's Blog ::

RON: Remote Online Notarization

Remote Online Notarization (RON) is one of the most straightforward solutions during this pandemic. If RON is an option that’s available to you, it’s likely the easiest solution. An all-digital closing, when allowed, frees up your time but also ensures everyone remains safe. Check your E&O policy to be sure Remote Online Notarizations are not excluded from the policy.


E-Closings Work Well

Digital real estate closings, now known as e-closings or even e-signing, are an excellent opportunity for buyers and sellers to sign all of the necessary settlement documentation electronically. You don’t have to meet with parties in-person to close the detail. Title agents will lead these actions through video conferencing solutions.

One key caveat here, though, is that some services can be worrisome when it comes to a privacy standpoint. Zoom, one of the most popular tools for video conferencing during this period, isn’t ideal for all situations. There have been some security and data flaws in it. If you’re uncomfortable using Zoom, there are alternative video conferencing tools such as Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, Google Meet and more.


Increase Cybersecurity Protections

Another important step during the current social distancing requirements is to provide consumers with a safe transaction. With more transactions being handled over the internet, there is a heightened risk for cyberattacks, including ransomware attacks on companies. Most agents want to do what it takes to ensure their customer data is safe. That means increasing cybersecurity at your location.


Finding the Right Balance

Even in situations where it becomes difficult, at best, to conduct a closing virtually, there are steps agents can take to improve circumstances for in-office visits. This includes minimizing the number of people in the office to just one client at a time. Or, instead of meeting in the office, meet outdoors at a park where there is more space between you and your clients. Proper sanitization before and after all appointments is critical.


What Are You Doing to Keep Your Business Moving?

It’s a difficult time, but it’s also one of the best times for innovation. What are you doing to get the job done while practicing safe social distancing? As states begin to open up to allow for more business and interaction, what tips do you have for doing so safely? Feel free to share your tips down below!


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Conducting Closings in New Ways

Closings ARE becoming more virtual with states approving RON (Remote Online Notary) laws. However, Electronic Notaries 0r e-Notaries still require, in most states, that the notary physically be present (i.e. can reach out and touch) the signers.

And a few states have approved RIN (Remote Ink-signed Notarization) as a temporary act during the pandemic. That's where documents are printed and sent by the  notary, and then signed and mailed back to the notary for the notary signature and stamp.

In some states even Zoom meetings are allowed if approved in writing by the signers. So make SURE #1 your state, 2# your county recorder and #3 your Lender and #4 your Title Insurer will ok all. And be sure to know and follow your state laws!  It's tricky

by Jeanine Johnson | 2020/10/17 | log in or register to post a reply

Remote Ink-signed Notarization Extended
Minnesota's Governor passed the Remote Ink-signed Notary (RIN) authorization that was to end January 6th, but he has now extended it to March 31, 2021, and depending on the Covid-19 situation, may extended it again. Thank you Governor Walz.!  
by Jeanine Johnson | 2021/01/04 | log in or register to post a reply
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