New bill could allow nationwide digital shutdowns
Digital closures have become extremely popular during the pandemic. With social distancing making traditional home closings difficult, many buyers and investors have relied on online processes to get the job done. In fact, according to the American Land and Title Association, the use of remote online notarization – a requirement for any fully digital closure – has skyrocketed 547% last year.
The only problem? The service is only legal in just over half of all US states.
Fortunately, that may soon change with the introduction of a new bill in the Senate. Dubbed the SECURE Notarization Act, the bill would allow remote online notarization services across the country. Here’s what you need to know about this bill, as well as the possibilities it presents to real estate buyers.
The SECURE Act was introduced to the Senate by Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) and Senator Kevin Cramer (RN.D.) on May 13. If passed, the legislation would allow remote notarization services for all licensed notaries in the country. The bill would also require certain security measures – such as “tamper-proof technology” and multi-factor authentication – to prevent potential cases of fraud.
Cramer said, “The pandemic has exposed several loopholes and outdated methods used in the US economy, and the notarized process is a prime example. Our bill would bring this process into the 21st century, allowing people to securely complete notarized documents remotely, just as they do with many other important forms.
So far, the bill has been approved by a number of major industry players including the National Association of Realtors, Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), National Association of Home Builders, ALTA, Zillow, and more.
Here is what Bill Killmer, senior vice president of legislative and policy affairs at MBA, had to say about it: “The SECURE notarization law is essential in supporting new owners and would help apply a transactional freedom measure to the flow. essential real estate fence. activities as Americans begin to fully emerge from the pandemic.
To be fair, this is not the first time that the SECURE Act has seen the light of day. The two senators initially presented an almost identical version of the bill in March 2020, just after the outbreak of the pandemic. It stagnated, however, and never went further than an initial introduction. The current version of the bill has already been referred to the Judicial Committee for further consideration.
For real estate investors and home buyers, the passage of the SECURE law could be huge, making closings more convenient and hassle-free than ever before – especially for those buying or relocating from far away.
This could mean closing an investment property from your living room or home office, regardless of what state it is in (or the property is in, for that matter). It could also help online notary platforms like Notarize and NotaryCam to explode.
But remote notarization isn’t just for buying a house. It can also be used to execute wills or to finalize countless other types of documents.
Warner said, “Remote online notarization is a transformative technology that offers consumers a convenient way to securely complete important documents. While the COVID-19 pandemic has presented a number of barriers to essential tasks such as executing wills, drafting documents while selling a home, or buying or selling a car online, many states have showed how to effectively deploy this type of technology to meet the needs of Americans. “
The bottom line
The SECURE law could be a game-changer for real estate investors, especially those looking to explore other markets and locations. Make sure you stay tuned Millionacres; We will keep you updated with the latest news regarding remote notarization as we go.