Friends, Family, Colleagues & Clients,
Wishing you all the very best during these uneasy times.
We are fortunate to be open for business and operating as normally as possible in these unchartered waters. Our goal is to continue to help keep the real estate engine humming while exercising the utmost care for the health and safety of our team members and our clients. Here’s a few new policies that we are putting in place to protect you.
According to the White House and CDC, social distancing is the most effective method of reducing the transmission of COVID-19. In order to reduce the amount of people in the office at a given time, we ask that you contact us prior to dropping in to set up an appointment. In most cases, we will be able to address your question by phone or email. Please know, we love your visits but keeping our distance is the responsible thing to do.
In addition to erring on the side of distance, we are taking as many environmental precautions as possible in our offices.
- Arriving to a Closing: Guests are encouraged to use hand sanitizer and/or wash hands upon arrival at our office.
- Symptomatic Clients: Any guest who exhibits symptoms that may be like coronavirus (fever, cough, shortness of breath, etc.) must notify staff upon arrival and we will escort them out of common areas into a private closing room.
- Post-Closing Disinfecting: After each closing, the chairs, table and door handle will be wiped down with disinfecting wipes or bleach solution.
- Closing Table Items: Nothing but closing documents and new pens (for each client) will remain on our closing tables.
- Lobby Items: All reading materials, ceramic mugs and other re-usable items have been removed.
- Hand Sanitizer: Hand sanitizer is available for guests. Should it become unavailable, employees and visitors will wash their hands before and after any closing or other meeting.
- General Environmental Cleaning: Cleaning personnel are using appropriate germ-killing solutions when cleaning office areas after-hours.
- Social Distancing: When possible, we will stay approximately six feet from others.
- Workforce Dispersion: We have invested in technology that, if needed, allows employees to work from remote locations, assuring production and service continuity.
Operationally, there are many times where coming by the office is easy, convenient and even fun. We love celebrating new deals and closings as much as you do! Please consider the following alternatives to face-to-face meetings:
- NEW CONTRACTS/TITLE ORDERS: Please email your new contracts to us. Please let us know if you need help scanning – we have a wide suggestion of apps that can assist as well. We can even take a fax if you need us to.
- EARNEST MONEY DEPOSITS: We realize that a certain urgency exists when it comes to getting in those earnest money deposits. Our first recommendation is to build a bit more cushion into your contracts for the delivery of EMDs. Secondly, we request that earnest money deposits be wired or sent via the remitting client’s bank’s electronic check system.
- CLOSINGS: When it comes to signing closing
documents, there are lots of options, many of which depend on your role in
- CASH BUYER: If you are paying cash for your real estate, you may and will be asked to sign your closing documents electronically.
- SELLER: If you are selling real property, some of your documents require notarization. Fortunately, we partner with underwriters and Remote Online Notarization companies that allow you to sign your documents in front of a notary public remotely. Unless it is impossible for you to do this, we will ask that you sign your documents remotely.
- LOAN CLOSINGS (BUYING OR
the mortgage lending industry has been slow to adopt options for the
electronic signature of loan packages. Unless
your loan is with a lender that’s adopted electronic signing, you will
need to “wet” sign your documents. If you must come to our office to sign
your loan documents, we will take at least the following measures:
- We will, if we have the loan documents in time, share them electronically and make ourselves available for questions and document review prior to your in-person signing appointment. This will reduce the amount of time required for your signing.
- Because we will have reviewed the documents prior to your appointment, we will allow you to sign the documents in one of conference room. We will only provide a staff member if you require one present. We will, of course, remain available for questions and will prepare the documents in such a way that makes it easy for clients to sign.
- COPIES OF CLOSING DOCUMENTS: Electronic copies of all signed documents are available online via our secure DigitalDocs portal.
- FUNDINGS/CHECKS: We recommend that you allow us to wire any and all funds due to you at closing. This includes seller proceeds, borrower proceeds from refinances, and real estate commissions.
Our ability to close real estate transactions, protect property rights and issue title insurance relies heavily on input from other businesses (e.g., banks, mortgage lenders, county and state governments, etc.). As long as those entities continue to operate, so will we. Should that change, we will let you know as quickly as possible.
Thanks for entrusting us with your business. We look forward to continuing to serve you and your clients! Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.