The offer-signing process has traditionally been a slow, cumbersome process. From using a wet signature page to having to type the contract back and forth, getting an accepted offer signed can easily take up a lot of time. With electronic signatures, everything is much simpler, faster, and more secure, especially in mortgage closing.
Electronic document signing is transforming the business of buying and selling homes. Over the last several years, many real estate professionals and platforms have come to rely on electronic signature platforms, such as DocuSign, to facilitate the process.
But how does it all work? What are the benefits compared to the ink signature? Is it legally recognized? We answer some of the most frequently asked questions about e-signature in real estate.
The real estate industry has long relied on signatures to complete transactions. Whether it's signing a contract or closing documents, real estate deals often require a physical signature.
With the advent of electronic document signing or eSignature, it's now possible to complete real estate transactions entirely online. eSignature is the digital equivalent of an ink signature on paper, and it offers a number of advantages over traditional signatures.
For one, eSignature is more convenient, as it can be completed from anywhere in the world. Additionally, eSignature is more secure, as it provides a log of when and where the document was signed. Finally, eSignature is more efficient, as it eliminates the need to mail or fax documents back and forth. For all these reasons, eSignature is becoming increasingly popular in the real estate industry.
There are several options under the Electronic Signature umbrella such as:
It is recommended that businesses utilize the last option in matters such as contracts, which can involve compliance issues.
A trust service provider is a person or entity that issues and preserves digital certificates to create and validate electronic signatures, authenticate the signer, and authenticate websites in general.
For realtors who are members of the National Association of REALTORS, it is important to note that DocuSign is the eSIGN provider for its REALTOR Benefits program.
Other platforms that offer e-signatures that will be helpful for real-estate includes:
On June 30, 2000 the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (E-Sign Act) was signed into law o help implement the adoption of e-signatures as legally binding. as well as the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA), which has been adopted by 47 states.
In the real estate industry, the National Association of REALTORS supported the "E-Sign Act of 2000" which makes electronic signatures legal as valid as handwritten signatures. This would cut paperwork and speed up real estate transactions, while still maintaining its legal integrity.
The trend towards e-signatures isn't slowing down anytime soon, as more and more real estate agents and vendors jump on board to simplify the process. Whether you are a real estate broker using DocuSign as a tool in your day-to-day home buyer document preparation or a homebuyer prepared to spend extra time in the closing room, now is a good time to know what e-signatures mean for the future of real estate transactions.