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The Hidden Cost of Paper Transactions

February 19 2013

document mgrAre the tools and processes you use in your real estate business giving you the maximum return on your investment? If you're still battling through mountains of paperwork, there may be room for improvement.

Examining the Hard Costs of Paper

Depending on what state you live in, a single real estate transaction can require signatures on anywhere from 10 to 100 documents. The cost of all this paperwork makes a significant impact on your bottom line. Let's take a quick look at where these expenses lie:

  • Printing - On a standard office printer, a single black-and-white page costs $0.03. With color, the cost jumps to $0.08.
  • Delivery - The cost of postage and courier fees adds up quick. For documents that can be signed locally, factor in the time and expense of travel, as well as the hassle of coordinating meeting times that are convenient for all parties.
  • Storage - Storing and managing paper documents costs over 50 times as much as electronic records, thanks to necessities like filing cabinets, boxes, folders, and more. Not only will you need more space as time goes on, but there are special considerations that paper archives need, like temperature, humidity, and fireproofing.
  • Document loss and reproduction - Whether lost in transit or just lost in the shuffle, paper documents are always at risk of going missing. When this happens, you re-incur the costs of printing these documents again.

Exploring Intangible Costs

It's easy to analyze the hard costs of not using electronic signatures, but what of the intangible costs to your business? When paper documents get lost or aren't delivered on time, your reputation suffers. You can even lose out on crucial business opportunities!

The instant availability of electronic signatures lets your clients view documents the moment they're ready. They can be accessed from anywhere, on any device. If a document needs to be changed for any reason, there's no need to worry about the costs of reprinting or shipping. Simply modify the document and re-send it digitally.

Maximize Your Return on Investment

Investing in an electronic signature solution like DocuSign pays off in the time, money, and effort saved. Savvy real estate professionals can unbury themselves from paperwork and cut down on administrative time spent preparing documents. Perhaps most importantly, the instant nature of electronic signatures lets an agent capitalize on clients' peak enthusiasm.

In addition to time saved on document delivery, DocuSign streamlines an agent's workflow by integrating with tools already in their arsenal, like:

For an even better return on investment, Docusign is available to members of the National Association of REALTORS® at a discounted pricediscounted price.