You are viewing our site as an Agent, Switch Your View:

Agent | Broker     Reset Filters to Default
Authentisign: Enabling Counter Offer Features
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 at 12:00 PM PDT Come join our trainer and learn how to enable and send counter offers using AuthentiSign. In this webinar, you will learn: Creating a Signing Packet Adding Details for Signing Understanding Counter Offer Adding Participants Adding Documents Register now!
MORE >
Understanding the Advantages of eSigning
Old habits are hard to break, so if you're an agent or broker that hasn't been an avid user of digital signing, and 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.
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate: Broker Edition
MORE >
Why Your Clients Will Love Digital Signing
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, will be delighted. 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 and your customer, and be incredibly stressful.
MORE >
Digital Transformation: Learn how leading brokers are going fully digital from lead to close. (10/25)
MORE >
How Digital Signatures Will Speed Up Your Business
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.)
MORE >
A Real Estate Professional’s Guide to E-Signatures
MORE >
AuthentiSign and the Counter Offer (9/13)
Tuesday, September 13, 2016 at 8:30 AM PDT AuthentiSign and the Counter Offer will show the steps to Prepare a Counter Offer Form, Upload a 'Buyer Signed' Purchase Offer and prepare both for e-signing. We will highlight the signing participants steps to access and accept the prepared contract packet. AuthentiSign is e-Sign and UETA compliant as well as FHA approved! We look forward to 'seeing' you there!! Register now!
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate: Broker Edition (9/7)
MORE >
Paperless Files: AuthentiSign for e-Signing (8/22)
Monday, August 22, 2016 at 9:00 AM PDT Join us for an Overview of AuthentiSign, our e-signature technology that works on iPads, tablets and mobile devices, as well as laptops and desktops. We'll cover the features of Authentisign for digital signatures, the 'how to' of preparing completed forms and documents for digital or e-Signing. This webinar will also cover how to: Create a new signing by adding participants Preparing forms and uploaded documents by plotting the required signatures, initials and date stamps. We will highlight the first signing participants steps to access and accept the prepared contract packet. Register now!
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate: Broker Edition (8/3)
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate (7/20)
Wednesday, July 20, 2016 at 1:00 PM PDT This webinar will cover the basics of how to use DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate so you can get started and accelerate your business! Register now!
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate: Broker Edition (7/6)
MORE >
Advanced Authentisign for e-Signing and a Paperless Transaction File (6/30)
Thursday, June 30, 2016 at 10:00 AM PDT Learn more about Instanet's 'Advanced Features' such as in depth coverage of Mark-Up Tools, Checkboxes / Radio Buttons and Step 4, the design step. Signing Participants: In-Person, In-line signers and 'Private Email.' Also, bring your questions! We will want user feedback and interest as well.We will highlight the signing participants steps to access and accept the prepared contract packet. Authentisign is e-Sign and UETA compliant as well as FHA Approved! We look forward to 'seeing' you there! Register now!
MORE >
DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Real Estate (6/15)
MORE >
The Pen vs. the Pixel: Which Signature Is More Trustworthy?
Have you ever had a client who balked at the idea of signing transaction documents digitally? They may have worried about the legality of it all, perhaps wondering how something as ephemeral as an electronic signature could hold its weight against the "real world" tangibility of the handwritten kind. It's a reasonable reaction. After all, you're asking them to trust an unfamiliar technology with the fate of what's likely the biggest transaction of their lifetime--the purchase of a home. As an agent, you're likely familiar with eSignatures, but may struggle with explaining why they're not just safe, but actually safer than old-fashioned ink. Today, we're providing you with a little cheat sheet that you can use to counter common client objections to electronic signatures. The Vulnerabilities of Ink What people presume is the greatest strength of handwritten signatures--that each is unique to its owner--is actually its greatest weakness. Ink signatures are so unique, in fact, that they vary slightly each time they're written. That variability can be an issue if an ink signature is ever legally challenged. The biggest problem with something so individual, however, is that it's usually unknown to others. Unless I'm already familiar with Sally's handwriting style, how can I know for sure that that's Sally's signature? I can't, and even handwriting experts can only establish the 'likelihood' that a signature belongs to someone; they can't establish certainty. Written signatures are easy to forge, too, and paper documents can be modified just as easily.
MORE >
Learn to eSign with Digital Ink® (5/12)
MORE >
A Guide to E-signatures for Real Estate Agents
Signatures have been the bane of a real estate professional's existence for generations. With purchase agreements and closings getting more complicated every year, with more and more layers of mandatory disclosures, regulations, title assurances, and anything else you care to name, it's easy for customers to miss a signature or initial. Historically, this meant that the real estate agent winds up expending precious prospecting time driving across town to track down the parties, or spending money to prepare and send documents back to them via FedEx. No one wants to have a good deal delayed because of a paperwork snafu. Fortunately, there's a better way, thanks to a miracle of modern information technology. It's time to embrace the e-signature. The History of E-Signature Technology E-signatures are not exactly new. The first completely paperless house sale, using only electronic signatures, took place half a career ago, on July 25, 2000. Both the sale and financing of a home were involved, and the entire transaction took five minutes to record. Some industry studies are showing that using digital signatures on documents can result in turnaround-time improvements of as much as 80 percent. Yet many agents, sales support staff and other real estate professionals are still stuck in the dark ages, almost 15 years later. We have a system where technology-challenged bureaucrats – including ones that happen to own brokerage companies – still have people standing in line for notary stamps and burning gas to track down that last signature.
MORE >
Top 5 Secret DocuSign Mobile Features That You Don’t Know About
MORE >
This Overlooked eSignature Feature Can Enhance Your Customer Service
You know that email you receive from your eSignature solution when a client has viewed or opened the document you sent them? That seemingly innocuous message actually represents an opportunity to provide superior customer service to your client. Here's how. One of the concerns that people have about electronic signatures is that the agent doesn't really have opportunity to review a document with a client. Since most eSignatures are completed remotely, the agent isn't there to guide the client through the mountain of often confusing documents and disclosures. That's where the aforementioned email comes in. DocuSign will immediately send you an email once your recipient opens a document (if you don't use DocuSign, check with your eSignature solution to see if they offer this feature). This is an opportunity to call or text your client to say, "Hey, I'm in the office. If you need help or have any questions about the document I sent over, let me know." You can let your client think your call was well-timed serendipity, or you can mention that DocuSign notified you. That's your choice. If your client is a little tech shy or concerned about privacy, the former may be the better option.
MORE >
Behind a REALTORS® Digital Life: Musings from my Mobile
MORE >
Introducing DocuSign for REALTORS® PLUS
When DocuSign acquired Cartavi, it was easy to imagine great things as a result. We waited eagerly to see what DocuSign would do with this powerful new tool in its arsenal, and we were excited to see DocuSign for REALTORS® PLUS unveiled earlier this year. This week, we took a closer look with a guided tour—and we were not disappointed. So let me show you what DocuSign for REALTORS® PLUS can do for your business. Dashboard The DocuSign for REALTORS® PLUS dashboard is your cockpit for viewing and managing your transactions. From this home screen, you can see a quick snapshot of the latest activity related to your transactions, envelopes, and documents.
MORE >
Can You Trust That eSignature? How to Spot a Tampered Document
MORE >
Follow the Leader: Tom Gonser
When I say "DocuSign," what comes to mind? You know immediately that I'm talking about electronic signatures and transaction management. You can probably visualize the DocuSign interface, the familiar fonts and colors. You may even have an emotional reaction, most likely a positive one. These are the signs of a winning brand. What may surprise you is how quickly DocuSign was transformed from a bright idea into a household name. We talked to Founder and Chief Strategy Officer Tom Gonser to understand how this happened and to generate some ideas you can use in your own business. The DocuSign Magic DocuSign has undeniable appeal in a multitude of industries, but it seems particularly successful with real estate professionals. We asked Gonser to explain this "magic." "Real estate has a paper problem, perhaps more so than any other industry," he says. "So they were primed for a paperless solution. Secondly, we made DocuSign a really familiar process. Other companies were offering really complicated software; we focused instead on making it feel natural. We invented the yellow 'sign here' tab. Additionally, we worked with the documents real estate professionals were already using, and that flexibility was incredibly important." Gonser also credits DocuSign's mobile technology with creating the DocuSign appeal. "Today, consumers are incredibly mobile and so are agents. It's really important to provide the entire process on a mobile platform." He continues that the cross-industry use of DocuSign makes consumers and agents more comfortable. "People are using DocuSign in many contexts, not just in real estate."
MORE >
Authentisign For e-Signing (8/12)
MORE >
8-Point Checklist for Evaluating eSignature Security
How well does your electronic signature platform protect you and your clients? If you're not sure, use the checklist below to see how it stacks up. These eight items are important attributes that your eSignature solution should have in order to ensure that your documents are legally binding. If any of these criteria are missing, the service or application may be putting you and your clients at risk! It's also highly likely that no reliable electronic records are being created and that your documents will be rejected by banks. 1. Compliant Signing Process The person signing electronically must create and adopt their electronic signature, and place it into the document in the appropriate signing location, just as you would if you were signing with a pen. 2. Consumer Consent The ESIGN Act requires the person who has adopted the electronic signature to also agree to the consumer consent, which indicates that they have agreed to conduct business electronically. That consumer consent must be included in the audit trail/certificate, which is the history of the signed document. 3. Signer Authentication Options The system provides tools to allow the sender/account owner to request the person who is signing the document to authenticate their true identity with third party services such as Knowledge Base Authentication (KBA) or other third party methods. These tools provide additional assurance that the person signing the documents is the correct person. This is especially helpful when you are not e-signing documents in person.
MORE >
Electronic Signatures 101
MORE >
E-Signature Security: A Primer for Agents
Let's think about your signature for a minute. Not just any signature, but the old-fashioned pen-and-ink kind. There's no other signature like it in the world; it's not only unique to you, it's different each time you scrawl it onto paper. So it may seem counter-intuitive that electronic signatures are touted as "more secure" than handwritten ones. How can that be? Yes, your signature is a unique and special snowflake. That's precisely the problem. Here's why: It's Unique - Your handwritten signature is one-of-a-kind. It varies each time you write it. If a signature is legally challenged, this variability can be an issue. Unknown to Other Parties - Because it's unique, no one knows if a signature is really yours. Therefore, handwriting experts can only establish the 'likelihood' that a signature belongs to someone, but can't establish certainty. Easy to Falsify - Handwritten signatures are easy to copycat--and therefore easy to forge. Doesn't indicate document integrity - Documents can be altered just as easily as a signature can be forged. With paper, there's no surefire way of knowing if underlying document has been modified. Okay, you may be thinking, so ink signatures have weaknesses. But does that necessarily make electronic signatures better? After all, many banks have been slow to adopt e-signature technology and some still prefer traditional "wet" signatures. It makes sense if you think about it. It's one thing for a buyer and a seller to enter into an agreement, but as the third party underwriting a sale, banks are the ones taking the financial risk. It's understandable that they want to be absolutely sure a signature is valid and can be upheld in case of a legal challenge.
MORE >
5 Reasons Electronically Signed Documents Might Just be Better than Pen-and-Ink
MORE >
When Systems Integrate, Agents Win
When we talk about the benefits of our transaction management solution, EZ Coordinator, we often give integrations top billing. Why? Because we can't overemphasize the benefits to agents and brokers. Benefits of Integration When we talk about the benefits of integrating technology solutions, there are two factors that are strongest in my mind: Data Entry. Who actually enjoys data entry? Not me and probably not you. When an agent is working on several different technology platforms with the same information and those platforms don't "talk" to one another, it requires the agent to enter the same information separately into each platform. This leaves room for errors or inconsistencies and wastes a considerable amount of time. Jumping Around. When an agent is constantly jumping between a variety of technology tools, problems abound. First, it's just annoying. Am I right? I mean, you're on a Web-based tool but then you have to open a desktop application or maybe a mobile app – pretty soon, you feel like you're juggling with about seven balls in the air. But beyond the irritation factor, there's the time lost. It takes time to open a new desktop application or cloud-based tool. It takes time to enter your username and password. It takes time to look back-and-forth between all the platforms you have open at once.
MORE >
New Features Added to zipForm® Plus
MORE >
Spotlight on zipLogix’s TouchSign
zipLogix has long been an established leader in forms. They recently upped their already substantial value with digital signatures. Their solution, Digital Ink, deserves a closer look; today, we'll focus on just one feature from Digital Ink: TouchSign. TouchSign is a feature of the mobile edition of zipLogix, available for the iPad, BlackBerry PlayBook and all Android tablets. It allows in-person signing directly on the iPad. Besides the obvious benefit of convenient, anywhere signing, TouchSign offers the additional benefit of easing clients' fears about eSignatures. The signing method – using a finger directly on the touchscreen – feels more like a traditional pen and paper signature. This might help nervous clients feel more comfortable. If they're still reluctant, you can also remind them that digital signatures are perfectly legal and entirely secure.
MORE >
Using Your iPad with Buyers
MORE >
Family Matters
My 30th birthday is looming, and everything I used to think I'd feel at this major milestone has changed completely. Any sadness at disappearing youth or fear of my own mortality is a non-issue. Instead, all I feel is gratitude that I have the most important thing in the whole world: a beautiful family. I realize now that my family is the center of my world, and EVERYTHING takes a back seat to them. Making my home and my family the center of my universe means I need to be more efficient at other things, like work. For me, that's writing about real estate—and for you, it's selling real estate. I'm trying to find tools that can help with this efficiency at work, as I'm sure you all are, too. So while it's top-of-mind, let's talk about some of those tools that can help real estate agents streamline work to free-up time for what really matters: family. eSignatures The first timesaver I thought of was digital signatures. Signing documents digitally is taking our industry, and others, by storm by offering wide-ranging and substantive benefits for professionals and consumers alike. I interviewed Paul Koziarz of DocuSign, a leading digital signature provider, to learn more about the ways that eSignatures can save real estate professionals time. Time in the car. When your loved ones are waiting for you at home, the last thing you want to do is waste time stuck in the car. Driving from point A to point B to collect signatures doesn't require your unique professional expertise, and it's certainly not emotionally fulfilling. "eSignatures allow the parties in a transaction to sign documents quickly and safely, no matter where they are. And best of all, no driving across town required," Koziarz explains.
MORE >
Think Boomers Hate Tech? Think Again.
MORE >
Sprint into Spring
Hello there, February! Seems like I was just ringing in the New Year, and already Spring is right around the corner. It's certainly a wake-up call for those of us who can be prone to procrastination. You may see the rest of the year stretching in front of you and feel like you have infinite time to achieve your goals. The truth, however, is that time will fly by. So, are you ready to sprint? There are some ways to achieve a brisker pace for doing business. By streamlining your workflow and improving your efficiency, these tech tools can free you up to sell more real estate and keep that swift pace moving. Here are a few ideas to get you going: 1) Electronic Signatures If you're driving around town, it should be because you're showing properties and meeting with clients to take on new listings—not gathering signatures on real estate documents. With electronic signatures, the process is infinitely swifter and requires zero legwork on your part. As Jeremy Lehman, a real estate professional in Southern California, explains in his video on DocuSign.com, "At the Boutique Real Estate Group, our agents are in the field all day, every day. I mean, we're rarely in the office, so we really take advantage of mobile technology to get our jobs done wherever we are." He continues, "After using Cartavi [document management] and DocuSign together, it has really streamlined the process of working with all the other parties involved in a real estate transaction. The benefits to using DocuSign in our business are the fact that we don't have to meet with our customers to sign documents when it's not necessary. We can simply email documents to our clients and they can open them up and click to sign."
MORE >
Closing the Circle with Electronic Signatures
MORE >
Cartavi Adds Gusto to Version 3.3
Since being acquired by DocuSign, Cartavi has been working away at developing the golden triangle of the real estate document management echo system: Forms, Signature, and Storage. Better yet, they focus on making it happen on mobile first. Before this new release, signing a document was kind of clunky. You had to open your document in DocuSign, add signatures, sign it, then pull the completed document back into Cartavi. Now, you can sign any document right inside of Cartavi using DocuSign Ink. They took a complicated workflow and narrowed it down. When you look at a document today in Cartavi, just hit the 'Sign It' button. Then the menu items for managing names and signatures appears. Drag them where they go on the document, and sign it. New Integrations You may know that Cartavi is among the few document management companies to have acquired the license to integrate zipForms from zipLogix into their platform. The new signature workflow is going to make working with zipForms even easier.
MORE >
Selling to Gen X and Gen Y
MORE >
Checklist: Going Digital
"Digital" is an often used, frequently misunderstood term. In the case of real estate professionals, "going digital" can easily be replaced with "going paperless." It describes the transition of business functions from antiquated techniques (like filing cabinets and ballpoint pens) to modern computer technology. Are you ready to make this transition? We'll provide a checklist of the key tools you'll need. Before we do, let's have a little reality check. Your business will not be completely, 100% paperless – at least, not in the foreseeable future. There will be some documents and marketing collateral that you simply must put on a piece of paper. Your goal should be to aim for maximum paper reduction to honor the planet, reduce expenses, save time, and allow you to make more money selling real estate. The Checklist This checklist may not be inclusive, but it's a great place to start. These are the tools that can help you ditch the printer. 1. Electronic Signatures. The biggest offender for paper waste in real estate is contracts. With the multiple versions that most transactions go through, the number of pages printed can be truly terrifying. Thankfully electronic signature providers like DocuSign have digitized this process. Their technology has become incredibly advanced, offering remarkable functionality with an ease-of-use that surpasses even pen-to-paper signatures. With the addition of a mobile app like the DocuSign mobile app, you have your documents and forms with you no matter where you go, helping you close deals more quickly and conveniently.
MORE >
Will the Real John Doe Please Stand Up?
MORE >
This Tuesday: Learn How to Increase Productivity and Save Time
Our October webinar series continues this Tuesday! Join us to hear Cartavi's tips for getting more done in less time. You'll learn how to optimize your productivity and provide a hassle-free experience for your clients. (Brokers, did you miss last week's webinar? Click here watch the recording.) Our Cartavi webinars have always been popular, but we're especially excited about this one. It's our first web event together since Cartavi was acquired by DocuSign in May. We'll learn more about this deeper integration and Cartavi's most recent development--version 3.0! Don't miss the live demo of 3.0 by Cartavi CEO Glenn Shimkus! He'll show us its new responsive design and time saving enhancements, including: Dashboard – View the status of your transactions, documents and parties Inbound Email Update – Email documents directly into a Transaction Room Email Conversion – Save Email messages to PDF documents which are stored with your transactions Document Previews – View full previews of your documents with Transaction Rooms on the web Updated Transaction Monitoring – Monitor the status of your eSignature envelopes in real-time from your smartphone Bulk Actions for Documents - Email, delete and move/copy multiple docs from your smartphone Map View – View your transactions by Geo-location smartphones Multiple View Options – View your transactions in multiple ways, as a List, Grid or by Geo-location Join us Tuesday, October 15 at 1pm EDT/10am PDT to learn more!
MORE >
Where are Your Tech Pain Points?
MORE >
What You Need to Know Now About eSign and Document Security
Do you use an eSign service to handle the documents in your transactions? Did you know that eSign services don't necessarily provide the security that actually makes the documents legally enforceable? I was surprised to learn about this, too. The Federal eSign Act, which became law in 2000, actually deals more with the act of signing than making the document secure. Insecure or compromised documents aren't legally enforceable, and that could put the legality of your transactions at risk. That's why it's ridiculously important that you pay attention not just to getting a signature online through an eSign vendor, but that you take care that the document's security is up to snuff. That means that the documents your clients sign electronically need to be self-reliant, encoded with secure algorithms and hashtags and stand up to legal scrutiny for 20-40 years. Because lawsuits do happen. And banks like Wells Fargo and Bank of America are cracking down and will reject documents that don't comply with their security standards.
MORE >
It’s Time to Take Your eSignature Tool Seriously–The Law Does
MORE >
Choosing an Electronic Signature Solution
This is the latest in a series of 'Buyer's Guides' that feature questions to ask and options to consider before making a new purchase. See our previous guides to purchasing a CMA, CRM, and Document and Transaction Management solution. What are electronic signatures? Doubtless you're all familiar with the basic concept of electronic signatures. After all, this popular technology is an exceptionally great fit for our document-intensive industry. Still, there's no time like the present to develop this basic familiarity into a more complete understanding of technology that can truly make a difference in your business. Although each electronic signature solution serves the same primary purpose (allowing greater speed and flexibility in the signing of documents), they are all slightly different. So let's look at some questions you should ask electronic signature providers and learn about some of the companies that are leading this category. Questions to Ask There are some important questions to ask when buying any real estate technology product and some that are unique to choosing an electronic signature solution.
MORE >
8 Resources for Saving 'Green' this Earth Day
MORE >
Spring Clean Your Business Processes
How organized is your work life? If you're like a lot of agents, your desk is probably scattered with random paperwork, sticky notes, and more. Your unofficial other office--your car--is probably not faring much better. You're not alone. According to a survey by staffing firm Adecco, 57% of workers admit to judging colleagues based on the tidiness of their workspace. Your co-workers, however, are likely to be far more forgiving than potential clients. Luckily, spring is finally here, and now's the perfect time to get your professional life and space organized. Deep Clean Your Business Processes Spring cleaning your work life should, yes, include your physical space, but should also be a time to take a critical eye to your business processes and technology use. Why? Because while it's easy to get organized, it's far more challenging to stay organized. Start by honestly examining your weaknesses. What are your obstacles to staying organized? Are there technological tools you can use that would help? If you find yourself buried in mountains of paper, for instance, consider purchasing a solution like zipForm® 6 that digitizes transactions and eliminates unnecessary paperwork. Conversely, are there any tools that you're paying for but not using that you could eliminate? Cleaning up your bottom line is as important as cleaning up your personal space. For the most efficient use of your time and budget, focus on acquiring tools that integrate with each other. For example, when your transaction management solution offers digital signature capability, just think how much easier it would be to collect signatures from all parties, and how much faster you could submit offers or close a deal.
MORE >
Still Signing Those Contracts With a Pen?
MORE >
Product Tour: zipForm 6 Professional
For most new homeowners, the most challenging, tedious, and confusing part of their real estate transaction was the paperwork. As a real estate professional, it's your job to simplify that process as much as possible. But who is making it easier for you? One product aiming to do just that is zipForm 6 Professional. Hardly a new name in the industry, zipLogix is constantly improving their flagship forms solution, as is evident in its current generation. So please join us for a tour of zipForm 6 Professional. Creating a New Transaction with zipForm 6 Professional zipForm 6 Professional opens on a list of your transactions. From there, you can easily access any transaction that requires attention, or you can create a new transaction. We created a new transaction to see what the process was like. When creating a zipForm 6 Professional account, the appropriate forms will be added to your account based on current membership status with your Association or MLS. Thus, when you create a new transaction, the lists of forms you need are assembled for you. From the forms list, you can click or drag the forms you need in your transaction file. Note: Should your broker provide you with an account, the libraries you will have access to will be selected by the administrative user of the brokerage account. Once forms have been selected, zipForm 6 makes it easy for you to populate the documents with client and transaction information. The biggest time saving feature is the automatic field population. Fill in one field and the information will find its way into other forms as you add them to the transaction. This is not fool proof because of the nature of some forms, though, so always go through all of your forms to be safe. This eliminates a lot of typing, but this is just the beginning. After working in a region for a time, you may find yourself typing the same cities or zip codes, which can get tedious. The look up fields feature will remember this common data and put them in an easy drop down menu within the form field. This information is automatically saved and is available for all transactions and forms. In addition, the look up fields database may also be customized as you like and can be locked to prevent the database from saving any more information.
MORE >
The Hidden Cost of Paper Transactions
MORE >
Gain the Competitive Edge with Electronic Signatures
How would you fare in this scenario? It's 4pm on a Friday. The price of your client's dream home has just been reduced. What was previously out of financial reach is now within their grasp--but only if you act fast. Inventory's been low lately, and an attractive property like this is sure to be snapped up quick. If you submit an offer before the weekend begins, you give your buyers a crucial edge over the competition. You have one hour. Do you have the tools to get the job done? Gaining the Competitive Edge If you don't use a digital signature solution like DocuSign, the answer is probably 'no.' Barring a miracle, it would be impossible to draft an offer, print it out, deliver the documents, collect all necessary signatures, and submit it to the seller--all within sixty minutes. There's too much paper to shuffle, too much driving around and too little time--not only for you, but also for your client. Imagine having to get signatures from a husband and wife working on opposite sides of town! Electronic signatures eliminate the frenzy by letting you draft documents and electronically send them to all interested parties within minutes. There's no paper to print, and no travel time to worry about. All documents are instantly accessible to you and your buyers, whether you're in the office or they're on a cruise ship with their iPad or smartphone. That one-hour deadline? You crushed it.
MORE >
Case Study: Is Technology a Scapegoat for Poor Customer Service?
MORE >
Electronic Signatures FAQ
Electronic signatures have been among the hottest technologies in real estate this year. In chatting with Prabakar Mahalingam of GoPaperless Solutions, a leading provider of electronic signatures, I was curious about what obstacles, if any, stand in the way of further industry adoption. His response: lack of information. Real estate professionals and their clients may be reluctant to adopt this technology if they have unanswered questions. With all the benefits of electronic signatures – financial, environmental, practical – these questions should be answered. So, with Prabakar's help, I'm going to provide answers to some of the top electronic signature FAQs. These questions are primarily from the agent's perspective, however consumers share many of these concerns. How do electronic signatures work? There is a surprising array of different types of electronic signatures. Perhaps you've heard the term "digital signatures" tossed around – this is actually a subset of electronic signatures, one that uses a digital code that is unique to the signer and the document. Digital signatures are click-to-sign, as opposed to handwritten. Electronic signatures, unlike digital signatures, can be handwritten using a stylus. These are often called "wet" or "biometric" electronic signatures. Need help understanding this distinction? Check out our article, Not All Electronic Signatures Are Created Equal.
MORE >
Is Technology a Scapegoat for Poor Customer Service?
MORE >
"The Cloud" 101
Prabakar Mahalingam of GoPaperless Solutions says: You've heard so much about "the cloud," but do you really understand what it is and what the impacts are for your business? Maybe it's time to get back to the basics – with a crash course in Cloud Computing 101. Definition The cloud isn't up in the air; it's actually a bunch of servers in a data center, somewhere on the ground. What most real estate agents need to understand about cloud computing is that it is essentially any form of computing (particularly applications or storage) that takes place on the Internet. It's obviously more complicated and technical than this, but that other stuff matters for our developers – not for you, the end consumer. Use in Real Estate Each industry leverages cloud computing in a slightly different way. Some of the primary uses for real estate include: Storage – Saving and accessing data is one of the primary applications of cloud computing in any industry (just look at the popularity of Dropbox). In real estate, this is certainly true as agents seek to store signed documents, forms, contracts, photos, and other crucial information. The online vault is an example from our Real Estate Dashboard solution, where agents can access their contracts and documents anywhere, anytime, plus provide permission-based access to their clients and contacts. Fax – Sending and receiving fax electronically with cloud-based systems can help agents reduce the waste and inconvenience of paper fax. This is one of the popular features in our REDfax solution.
MORE >
Friday Freebie: Real Estate Dashboard
MORE >
Product Review: Instanet Solutions Suite
RE Technology usually tries to keep product reviews simple, focusing only on a single product from a single company at one time. However, we are deviating from our usual routine for this review with very good reason: the suite of products from Instanet Solutions integrate so seamlessly that to try to cover each separately would be doing a disservice to readers and to the product. Still, it's important to note that each of the products mentioned in this review can be purchased separately, if you so choose. The Basics To make this as easy to visualize and understand as possible, we will first walk through some of the most basic tasks related to a new transaction. We'll begin in TransactionDesk, Instanet's transaction management solution. There are several ways to create a transaction: If you're a member of certain MLSs, you can use the one-click transaction option from within the MLS to automatically import all the information. You can also create a new transaction from within TransactionDesk by entering a transaction name, a data source, a property type, and an MLS or APN number. This method of creating a transaction will also automatically import information from your MLS or a tax service. Here's an example: Whether you're using the one-click transaction option or creating a transaction manually, Instanet will automatically load the property information, the parties involved (including contact information, in many cases), and the forms necessary to complete the transaction.
MORE >
Friday Freebie: e-SignLive
MORE >
Product Review: eSignDashboard for iPad
At the end of 2011, electronic signature and document management provider GoPaperless Solutions launched their eSignDashboard app for the iPad. You can check out our sneak peek of the app here: "Going Paperless and Mobile with the eSignDashboard iPad App." The company has recently released some updates to the app and we decided it was about time to create a quick product review. Take a Test Drive If an image is worth 1,000 words, then video must be worth 100,000. We think this video from GoPaperless is a great way to get introduced to the app. We Walk through the Basics We downloaded the app on our iPad (it is available in the app store). Following along with the training video, we began by creating a folder for a fake transaction. The next step would naturally be to add some documents for that transaction. Forms can be added via email or from the Internet ("From URL"). Now, this is pretty cool – when I searched for a W9 online and found a .pdf version AND when I clicked on an attachment to an email, I was automatically given the option to "Open in eSignDashboard." It was really easy.
MORE >
Friday Freebie: GoPaperless Solutions eSignOnline
MORE >
Going Paperless and Mobile with the eSignDashboard iPad App
We heard through the grapevine that GoPaperless Solutions would soon be releasing their new iPad app. So, we called them up and asked to hear all about it. Prabakar Mahalingam, COO of GoPaperless, shared the details of the upcoming release. First, the BasicsThe app will be available on the App Store around December 1st. This is dependent upon the “powers that be” of Apple. Their acceptance process is surprisingly strenuous, we hear. Best of all, the app will be free for the first few days that it is available on the App Store. We’ll let you know as soon as it is released so that you can take advantage of the free offer. Key Features“With the app,” says Mr. Mahalingam, “real estate agents can now be paperless AND mobile. Picture this: you’re sitting at your desk (with your computer that has the GoPaperless Real Estate Dashboard software installed), and you get called away to have a client sign documents. So, you head out into the field with your trusty iPad. If you have our app, you can meet the client wherever they want, and they can sign the documents on your iPad with a stylus or their finger. As soon as you get back to the office, you will see that the signed document is already updated on your computer.”
MORE >
Looking Forward with Austin Allison
MORE >
Find the Right Tablet for You
Most of us are familiar with the concept of a tablet computer. However, as with digital signatures (as we discussed last week), not all tablets are created equal. If you’re considering a purchase – or an upgrade – it may be helpful to understand the different types of tablets, particularly the differences between convertible and slate tablets. Don’t run out and buy an iPad without taking a careful examination of your needs. Sure, they are cool, but do they help you sell more real estate? Tablet Computers for Real EstateBy definition, a tablet computer (or just “tablet”) is a Web-enabled personal computer that is operated primarily using a touchscreen. Note that “primarily” is the operative word here, as we’ll soon discuss. The iPad is a tablet – one of many on the market. Real estate agents are already finding tablet computers immensely useful. One of the advanced new ways that tablets can be used is to obtain electronic signatures, so we spoke with Mehrdad Alaei of GoPaperless (a top purveyor of electronic signatures) for insight.
MORE >
Friday Freebie: DocuSign
MORE >
Not All Electronic Signatures Are Created Equal
There are traditional signatures (with pen and paper) and electronic signatures, right? Those are my two options? Wrong. There are actually several different types of electronic signatures. One of the most important distinctions is between “wet” (handwritten) electronic signatures and digital electronic signatures. Definitions It may help to begin with some definitions. Wet (handwritten) electronic signature: a graphical representation of an ink-to-paper signature or simply actual handwritten signature on electronic media. Digital electronic signature: a digital “fingerprint” that is unique to the signer and the electronic document. Handwritten Electronic Signatures Each time I purchase a prescription at my local pharmacy, I have to sign a little screen with a stylus to indicate that I have been offered counseling by the pharmacist. Oftentimes, when we make a purchase with our credit card, we must sign in a similar way. These are excellent examples of handwritten electronic signatures.
MORE >
Video: Tech Thursday with Maya Paveza (Sep 22)
MORE >
Quick Tip for DocuSign Users
A growing number of agents and brokers are choosing to use DocuSign for digital signatures. For those of our readers using this helpful tool, we're publishing the following article from DocuSign. With the introduction of the new DocuSign User Interface came changes to the Sending process. The Create Envelope section now consists of 3 stages to assure that your documents are sent properly and efficiently: 1) Prepare Envelope; 2) Tag Envelope; and 3) Preview Envelope. It is important to note that when in the Tag Envelope window, you don't need to click the Go Back button to make changes. Use the Tag Toolbar! For example, let's say you are in the middle of tagging your document and you need to modify something (i.e. add/edit a recipient, add/remove a document, etc.). The Tag window features a very handy Tag Toolbar located to the right of your document, under the Zoom bar. Everything that can be done on the Prepare Envelope page can also be done during Tagging without leaving the Tagging page!
MORE >
Tip for Success
MORE >
Are You Meeting Your Goals for 2011?
June is officially here, marking the middle of the year. It's time to start asking yourself if you've accomplished, or set the wheels in motion to accomplish, the goals set early in the year. For many Realtors®, that goal was to ditch traditional real estate practices and adopt the right technology solution to make their business interactive. The end of 2010 promised the future of real estate as more people were adopting smartphones and tablets – meaning Realtors® would quickly need to adopt a solution to meet prospective home buyer and seller demand.
MORE >
Going Paperless: A Smart Choice
MORE >
Are Electronic Signatures Right for Your Business?
Guest Contributor GoPaperless says: More and more REALTORS® are completing real estate transactions using electronic signatures. Not surprisingly, these REALTORS® do not miss chasing faxes or maintaining large files of paperwork. These REALTORS® are finding also that real estate moves faster in the digital world, and clients are impressed with the speed and ease with which the transactions occur. So how does it work? In cases where the clients are at a distance, like at home for example while the REALTOR® is at their office or on the road, the REALTOR® will send the client a link to the documents with the areas they need to sign highlighted. The client will identify themselves and click to sign the document over the Internet. The electronic signature is legally binding in a real estate or other business transaction, so the process moves forward the same as it would have had the client and REALTOR® met for an in-person signing. Obviously, not having that meeting saved everyone a great deal of time.
MORE >
Cloud Computing and Social Media in Today's Business World
MORE >