Times are uncertain right now, people are choosing to practice social distancing and stay home instead of going out. But all this doesn’t have to stop you from closing on your new house; with eClosings (virtual closing procedures) it’s possible to sign all the papers over the internet.
Is an eClosing Available to Me?
Not every lender has the ability to do eClosings but if they can you can skip going into an office and sign your documents during a video chat with a notary. Washington state has about 50% county availability for eClosings, so talk with your lender to see if that will work for you.
If you aren’t able to set up an eClosing, you can always talk with your lender or agent to see what changes can be made to protect everyone involved. Here are some other precautions you can take if you need to meet in-person:
- Skip the handshakes – they are a nice gesture but they aren’t needed
- Bring your own pen – that way you know who has been touching it
- Don’t bring your friends – keep attendance to just the people needed for the signing
- Tell people when you are sick – your lender can work out a safe time and place for you to sign the documents so they stay healthy
What Are the Types of eClosings?
There are two types of eClosings that people can take advantage of: Remote Online Notarizations (RON)s and Hybrid eClosings. RONs are conducted completely online, all documents are signed virtually with a notary. Hybrids allow you to review and sign most of the documents electronically but some require in-person meetings.
How Can I Prepare for an eClosing?
Even though you aren’t going into an office there are still formalities to make sure everything goes smoothly.
- Before your meeting, test out your webcam, microphone, and headphones. You don’t want to start your meeting with technical difficulties.
- Sit near your router or make sure that your wi-fi has a strong signal so you don’t risk losing connectivity during your meeting.
- Sit in a well-lit room because the notary will need to see your identification. You will also need your social security number and two forms of government identification.
- Review your documents before the meeting and ask your lender or agent any questions.
The Future of eClosings
Thanks to the internet the process of closing on a house is changing. While social distancing won’t last forever, eClosings are making it unnecessary to meet in person to sign papers. There are even programs to help sellers give tours virtually. Being able to close over the computer is more convenient for all parties, sellers get money quickly and the new buyers get to move into their new homes sooner.
Still have questions? Feel free to call me anytime!