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COVID-19 Closing Options and Policies to Limit Contact

We continue to monitor the recommendations issued by public health agencies as the situation surrounding COVID-19 evolves. In order to adhere to CDC “social distancing” recommendations, we have implemented the following policies and adopted the closing procedures outlined below in order to reduce the number of people attending closings. Most importantly, please do not attend a closing if you feel unwell or are experiencing any symptoms.

All Closings

  • We will reach out to both attorneys several days prior to closing to confirm attendance and discuss any special accommodations.
  • All high-contact areas will be sanitized before and after each closing.
  • Closing times are being spaced to limit contact.
  • New pens are provided for each closing.
  • Any person not feeling well or showing symptoms of illness should not attend the closing.

Cash Transactions

Cash transactions will be closed electronically using the following process:

  • Please email all necessary documents, including any documents that were pre-signed, to your Closing Officer in advance of closing.
  • A FedEx label will be provided to any party that needs to send closing documents or checks, including the original deed, Affidavit of Title, Bill of Sale, surveys, etc.
  • Proceeds and other disbursements will be sent by the Closing Officer overnight via FedEx or by wire transfer.

Transactions with Loan (Seller Side)

Sellers and seller’s attorneys should not attend closings. Please use the following process:

  • Please email all necessary documents, including any documents that were pre-signed, to your Closing Officer, in advance of closing.
  • Closing Statements will be emailed to all parties for review prior to closing.
  • Seller’s Attorney should be available via email to sign documents during the scheduled closing time.
  • A FedEx label will be provided to any party that needs to send documents or checks, including the original deed, Affidavit of Title, Bill of Sale, surveys, etc.
  • On the day of closing the final master settlement statement and Seller CD will be emailed for final approval and signature.
  • Proceeds and other disbursements will be sent by the Closing Officer overnight via FedEx or by wire transfer. 

Transactions with Loan (Buyer Side)

We require one of the following options to reduce the number of people required to attend the closing:

Buyer(s) Attends (not Buyer’s Attorney)

  • Closing Statements will be emailed to all parties for review prior to closing.
  • Only Buyers required to sign loan documents should attend the closing.
  • Buyer and Buyer’s Attorney may phone conference to discuss documents at scheduled closing time.
  • After document signing, parties will be notified when the transaction funds.
  • After the transaction has funded, the proceeds and other disbursements will be sent overnight via FedEx along with a signed closing statement or made available for pickup.

Buyer’s Attorney Attends (not Buyer) or Attorney Executes Documents Remotely

  • The process outlined above will be followed except the Buyer’s Attorney attends and executes the loan documents on behalf of the Buyer(s) pursuant to a Power of Attorney (POA).
  • The POA must be submitted to and approved by the lender prior to closing.  

NOTE: If the Buyer’s Attorney wishes to execute the documents in their office and has a notary public available we can email the loan package to them. They would need to overnight via FedEx the executed loan package to our Closing Officer. This process would require prior approval by the lender. We recommend exploring this option if you and your Buyer are in a high risk category with regard to COVID-19.

We’re Here to Help

If you or your clients have any specific concerns or needs, please do not hesitate to contact your account representative. Someone will be available to assist you from 7:30 a.m. through 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. We are committed to making you and your clients as safe and comfortable as possible.

We are grateful for your continued confidence, and thank you for your collaboration and understanding during this difficult time.

BREAKING NEWS:  The American Land Title Association, the National Association of Realtors, and the Mortgage Bankers Association are in the process of introducing emergency legislation, called the SECURE Notarization Act, that would allow for remote online notarization (RON) across the United States. RON is a type of electronic notarization where the notary and signer are in different physical locations which would allow for real estate transactions to close without an in-person closing. We are in contact with ALTA and will provide more details as they become available. For more information click HERE.

Sincerely,

– The Landtrust Title Services Team

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