Lack of trust is pervasive in our culture today. Only about half of all Americans trust businesses overall, according to the Edelman Trust barometer. And two-thirds of Americans worry technology will make it impossible to know if what people are seeing or hearing is real.
As a real estate agent, how can you help clients who distrust technology during a time when technology is powering the real estate industry in all new ways?
One of the easiest ways to help clients get more comfortable with technology is to explain the benefits of the technology to them or the WIFM: “What’s in it for me?”
Did you realize that a dozen states allow or are testing a digital driver’s license? That’s right: no more fumbling in your purse or wallet to show your vital ID. It is digital, and all you need is your smartphone.
You don’t even need a paper passport at many ports of entry into the U.S. today with the Mobile Passport app. This is not a fad; it’s our future as experts predict that it’s just a matter of time that all IDs will be digitized.
The world is undergoing a digital transformation. Whether you like it or not, it’s a reality that for your business is worth embracing. Why? Because it will increase your productivity and that can be a big bump to your earnings, personal time, or both.
Old habits are hard to break. If you’re an agent or broker that still favors paper and ink, then you might have some misconceptions about this modern time-saving technology that has been holding you back. Once you understand the advantages of eSigning – what it can mean to you, your business and especially your customer experience – you’ll not only become a user, but also maybe even an advocate.
Benefits of digital signatures for agents and clients
In Part Two of this two-part series that looks at how electronic signatures work inside a transaction management solution, Tricia Stamper of Florida Realtors shows what the signature experience looks like from a home buyer or seller’s point-of-view.
One of the most powerful ways to quickly engage a new client is to show them something that will “wow” them. Digital signing can have that “wow” factor, particularly with home buyers and sellers who are used to signing paper real estate documents. The fact is, the more experienced your client is with a standard, paper-filled real estate transaction, the more they are going to appreciate – and be delighted with – the digital signing process.
And that’s a big misnomer in real estate: that somehow, your clients have to be tech-savvy to want to sign documents digitally. The only real impediment is not technology. The real barrier is the resistance we all have to doing something that we have never done before: the fear of the unknown. But if you show your clients what the digital signing process is like, and explain the incredible benefits it provides for them, you will find that every one of your customers, no matter what age or level of experience with new technology. In fact, digital signing is no longer considered a nice feature to offer. It has become so pervasive that buyers and sellers are expecting their agents to make it available to them, and not just Millennials.
Let’s look at how digital signing works for the consumer using Form Simplicity, a leading transaction management program that is Realtor-created and supported. The move towards a paperless transaction with Form Simplicity helps unlock the chains that keep agents tied to their desktop computers by giving agents access to all their documents from anywhere with Internet connection, anytime. With eSign built-in, Form Simplicity demonstrably improves the customer signing experience. Digital signing reduces both the time to sign and the number of errors. It eliminates the 11th hour scramble to get a missing signature, an unpleasant experience that can frustrate you, your customer and be incredibly stressful. Continue reading
In Part One of this two-part series in looking at how electronic signatures work inside a transaction management solution, Tricia Stamper of Florida Realtors shows what the experience looks like from an agent’s point of view. In Part Two, Stamper will show what the signature experience looks like from a clients’ point-of-view.
Going paperless is the fastest way for agents and brokers to improve their businesses, increase their profitability and give clients a better experience. Real estate is a mobile industry and agents are always on the go: in their home office, in their car, or meeting with clients at their home.
Today, by using a transaction management program such as Realtor-created and supported Form Simplicity, agents and brokers have the mobile tools to put contracts together anywhere. Agents are no longer chained to their desk and with Form Simplicity’s integration with eSign, electronic signatures can save every agent literally hours per transaction. That translates into increased profitability and productivity for agents.
Let’s first take a look at how easy and fast it is for an agent to use eSign technology, as shown inside Form Simplicity:
First, an agent can create an eSign session and quickly auto-populate their client information from the transaction contacts already inside Form Simplicity: (If the contact is not already in Form Simplicity, the agent can manually add them later in the process.)
The introduction of electronic signatures to industries received its fair share of initial backlash, but in the end proved, to even the most apprehensive, to be much more efficient and well-liked than the previous pen and paper method.
The Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act in 2000 was the final seal of approval, which made electronic signatures legal and as valid as a paper signature. But, what classifies as an electronic signature, and how do you know it’s protected? The level of security and protection signers receive depends fully on the provider they choose.
Electronic signatures that utilize an enterprise-level electronic signature process are usually include an intensive audit trail of who signed and when they signed. The necessary elements are provided to assist with the legal validity of signed contract s in practice as well as in court.
That being said, not all signatures that are electronic are also digital signatures. Electronic signatures track who signed, when they signed and captures intent and consent while a digital signature encompasses more of the security and data built in to protect electronic signatures from forgery or alteration. In short: an electronic signature is legal but it may not keep your information as well protected as a digital signature. Form Simplicity’s electronic signatures are backed by the security enhancements of digital signatures, to ensure authenticity and signature validation.
Before you sign on the dotted line, do some research into the company whose system you will be utilizing, and ask yourself if their system contains all the right security features and is your information and intent protected as well as prevention from signature tampering or forgery.
It often feels like different brands are providing identical services while simply changing their names. However, as both marketing and advertisements find their way into multiple channels of our lives, we forget that many of those brands do in fact possess specialties that set them apart.
With Form Simplicity’s Ultimate Edition, REALTORS® have access to eSign, an electronic signature service that not only speeds up the process of writing contracts, but also executing deals and getting agents one step closer to receiving their commissions. But what is it REALLY that makes Form Simplicity’s Ultimate Edition a product different from the rest? It provides its users with Knowledge Based Authentication, Tamper Proof documents, Mark-Ups, SMS Authentication and In-Person Signing. Continue reading
A new enhancement for eSign is now available: Cloud integration with Box, OneDrive and Dropbox. This enhancement, available to Ultimate Edition users only, allows users to seamlessly add documents from these external cloud storage accounts directly into the signing session. Please note: At this time the Android Browser and Chrome on IOS are not supported.
We are happy to announce a new feature to improve the eSign experience: eSign Markup. This new feature, available to Ultimate Edition users only, provides the ability to markup a contract with the already familiar drag and drop function. Users can strike-through, underline and highlight text, and add check marks or text boxes to any location within the contract. It’s simple.
Form Simplicity security enhancements meet guidelines for electronically signed documents often required by major banks and lenders.
Form Simplicity has added Knowledge Based Authentication (KBA) and password per signer features to its eSign tool, powered by GoPaperless. Real estate professionals who may have previously hesitated using electronic signatures for REO and short sale transactions now have the electronic signature security capabilities in Form Simplicity to meet strict electronic signature requirements set in place by banks and lenders.
Tricia Stamper, Director of Technology Products at Florida Realtors®, states, “We are pleased to announce these new eSign enhancements available to Form Simplicity users around the country. We continue to provide users with the most advanced transaction and forms management tools they need and want.” Continue reading