Capital Title is committed to the safety of our buyers and sellers as well as to our employees. News and recommendations are evolving daily, but here are some measures we are implementing now to help everyone move forward. As information changes, we will adjust these measures as needed. Many of our staff are working remotely, however, all 9 of our branch offices in Michigan remain open and are staffed with essential employees who make sure that transactions get closed, and buyers and sellers can keep their real estate dreams moving forward. Many customers are asking, “What are my options for closing my real estate transaction, while keeping safe during the COVID-19 epidemic?” Here are the menu of closing options:
Our newest closing option that our clients are asking for is the Curbside Signing. These are particularly popular for those who prefer to not enter a building. We accommodate this request at one of our branch office parking lots. We will come to their car donning masks and gloves with a clipboard that has been sanitized and brand new ballpoint pens for the signers to keep. Their documents can be signed while in their car, witnessed by our closer standing nearby. We will offer hand sanitizer to the signers before you get started and give them a disinfecting wipe to wipe off their driver’s licenses before handing them to the closer to make copies. To date, we have done about 125 curbside closings since the beginning of the COVID social distancing recommendations. Pictured is Angie Clavet, who is performing a closing for a buyer. Angie performed our first curbside signing and has perfected our process for performing this type of closing.
In addition to curbside closings, we have upgraded our safety protocols for our closings that take place in our closing rooms. Last week, we installed 48” plexiglass barriers (think sneeze-guards at a salad bar).
Our staff is diligent in ensuring that conference rooms and waiting areas are sanitized per CDC guidelines after each closing. We have removed any candy dishes and other “community items” from closing tables. Single use coffee cups and ink pens are brought in for each closing, then disposed of or taken with you after the closing.
Additional Closing Options
We’re offering multiple closing options to help those who prefer to keep their distance, as much as possible.
DocuSign closings can be arranged locally or anywhere around the world for buyers paying CASH.
DocuSign all documents except the ones that need to be notarized and some mortgage notes. Then, the client just comes in for a couple of minutes and wet-sign the remaining documents. We can accommodate them in our sanitized closing rooms, or curbside to sign those remaining documents in front of a Notary.
Audio-Visual Online Notary
Governor Whitmer’s last order in Michigan approved a temporary option for notarial acts for real estate transactions. Utilizing any form of audio and video combined (think Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype), the notary is able to witness the signature of the parties in the transaction, while a closer is going over the documents virtually. This is a game changer right now and will allow clients to safely sign their documents in their own homes. Not all transactions qualify for this type of closing. Contact your Capital Title branch office to see if your transaction meets the criteria.
IN PERSON … AT A DISTANCE
For closings and other personal contact in our branch offices, we’re welcoming you with smiles instead of handshakes and treating ink pens as a one-time use item that customers take with them or throw away. We are directing employees with symptoms of illness to stay home. Our employees answer questions each morning supplied by the CDC that ask questions regarding symptoms, travel, etc. We cannot allow any non-essential parties or those experiencing any symptoms to attend closings. We encourage Realtors or Loan Officers to Facetime with their client during the closing if they wish to be part of the event. We’ll continue to give you that Capital Title personal touch with a smile…at a distance.