Skyler, a/k/a Big Blue Bird, is my sweet 15 year old Blue and Gold Macaw and he is very bright. He has a vast vocabulary and he has learned to mimic many things that I say to him. He calls for his Mommy, he says help me, cookie, cracker, ouch, and about 30 other words and phrases. He has picked all of these words and phrases up simply because he has heard them over and over again over the years. He does understand what some of them mean, for instance, he does know that if he says "Mom", I will come to him, if he says cookie or cracker he will get a snack, and if he says "help me" I will turn off his radio. (I'm not sure how that came about, it's kinda strange really).
My sweet Skyler is learning "sign here" but he can't seem to grasp "initial here", but we're working on that. Why do I bring the Big Blue Bird into this discussion?
I hear more and more tales of "closing agents" being hired to "conduct convenience closings". Many of these "closing agents" have in fact been involved in the title insustry and many of these closing agents may even be licensed title agents. BUT, many of these "closing agents" are notaries public who are trying to supplement their income and who have signed on with firms that offer convenience closings.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with someone trying to supplement their income by offering a service that is demanded by the public. But, as a professional title agent, I just don't think that the consumer understands how very important it is to meet with a professional title agent, in a professional setting during regular business hours who is familier with your closing file and who has the ability to answer questions that may be presented at the closing, or in the alternative get the answer to your questions.
My sweet big blue bird can say "sign here" and he could probably even learn to point to a particular document while saying that; as I said he is very bright! But if he were to be asked to answer a question about any of the documents presented he would likely respond with "help me". And therein lies the crux of the problem with using non-professional title agents to conduct your "convenience closing".
First and foremost, a real estate settlement transaction commits you to financial obligations. It is incumbent on YOU the CONSUMER to know what you are signing before you sign it. Sure, you may be involved in a refinance transaction, and you may think that the signing of the new loan documents is simply a technicality but that small technicality OBLIGATES you to a debt. Do you really want to take on that kind of responsibility while sitting at your local coffee shop or in your kitchen after business hours when there is no one available to answer your questions?
Yes, we can train almost anybody to "witness" closing, but in order for that "witness" to be able to answer your questions they need to be know the business of title specifically and real estate generally.
Call on the services of The Preferred Title Group, Inc. in Maryland for a professional settlement experience. If you are not located in Maryland, call on the services of an Professional Independent Title Agent in your area.