Several years ( first post I had typo of tears!) ago when I was first starting in the real estate business, I had a buyer client who was moving from out of state to the Katy, Texas area. These folks owned a home in another state and had a contract on the home they owned in the other state. The husband was already working in the Houston area and periodically commuting to his home.
My clients decided to spend about 9 days in the Katy area during August that year to look for homes for sale. As we looked at homes they changed their requirements which is perfectly normal thing for buyers to do. Over the course of the 9 days we viewed at least 70 homes and wrote 5 contracts. None of my buyers’ offers were accepted as all the sellers perception was that the sale of my buyers out of state home was “ too far into the future” for their own or their listing agents comfort zone. Exhausted my clients flew home without a deal on a new home. When they left they instructed me to keep looking and said that I knew exactly what they wanted. No problem from my standpoint as I did know what they wanted and needed in a home.
My work space at my real estate office had become a paperwork disaster as I had all 5 of the different contracts spread all over two sides of a work cubicle. The Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) has numerous disclosure forms available that can be given to potential buyers/sellers of real estate. The Broker I was formerly associated with required that almost all of these forms forms be signed or initialed by at least its agent’s client if not both parties. The total pages that needed to be signed or initialed swells to almost 50 with these requirements. The software I use for contracts also prints the address of the property in question on each sheet. I had not yet adopted the policy to print all the disclosure documents separately from the actual contract and addendum's.
I found a home that matched all my clients needs on a Saturday morning, took pictures and sent those via E-mail to my clients and by Sunday morning they wanted to make an offer. This was great as I was very happy and so were my clients. I wrote the contract which included all the disclosures, and addendum's and that is when the real fun began (?) . My clients had to write an explanation letter to the sellers telling them why they should accept their offer while the sale of their home was 35 days in the future. The wife wrote a great letter and we were finally in business.
My clients as it turned out owned a very old desk top computer and an even older printer and scanner. Their desk top had all kinds of problems receiving my E-mails ( 50 pages in total) spread over say 5 separate attachments and eventually printing my attachments as I had to send numerous e-mails each having one attachment comprising of 4-5 pages. After 2 days of trying to get the whole contract received we both threw in the towel. I asked if I could fax the contract. My clients had a local copying store where the documents could be faxed. The first pass cost me over $50 to fax.
The seller responded fairly quickly but only after the listing agent gave me a hard time about how long it took for the offer to arrive. I had given him a call to inform him we were in the process of trying to get our offer signed. The seller responded by sending what is called “ Sellers Invitation to Buyer to Submit New Offer” instead of just sending me an E-mail with the sellers counter terms. It turns out I had to redo the entire contract including those pesky disclosures as the software I was using had printed the address and the listing agent wanted the address totally written out in a specific fashion. This was completely unnecessary but I went along as I just the deal to go through.
I will spare the readers all of the remaining document nightmares just trying to get a complete contract signed. When I finally had an executed contract I had spent at least $300 faxing or sending overnight the required documents. This process took several days and got on every one's nerves. Unfortunately we did not have an electronic means to send the documents back and forth or DocuSign. My next nightmare was to put together the document package my broker required. That was another long and drawn out tale of misery for me as I said earlier my work space was loaded with the 5 contract offers that other buyers’ refused to consider.
I do not use DocuSign at this time but I am looking forward to trying it out. I had a listing agent recently who used DocuSign for the sellers side of the deal and it worked like a champ without any document nightmares.
This post is a submission to the DocuSign/ActiveRain Electronic Signature Stories contest. Its possible I will win a prize for writing this post. You could win a prize too by going to the Contest Announcements and sharing your own story.