Another avenue for remote closing opens

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The use of remote ink-signed notarizations in a growing number of states across the country gives mortgage companies another tool for closing deals during coronavirus lockdown.

Qualia is the latest firm to create a product that enables document signing while honoring social distancing regulations. The digital real estate platform launched its Connect Video Chat in compliance with RIN guidelines to keep loan and purchasing processes moving in lockdown.

"The COVID-19 crisis has magnified the need for contactless, digital real estate tools throughout the entire home buying journey for businesses and clients, from the beginning of the initial search all the way to the closing," Nate Baker, Qualia co-founder and CEO, said in a press release.

The chat feature provides a secure, real-time video call during which wet signatures are recorded and stored in Qualia's servers. The mass shift to remote work highlighted the need for data security and systems that can adapt to digital documentation. Remote notarizations, whether online or ink-signed, are a major piece of the puzzle in business continuity.

"Our goal is to support our community by building products that make home closings safe, secure, efficient and affordable. The launch of Connect Video Chat is an important step toward fulfilling that goal of enabling home buyers across the country to continue to close on a home. Now they can do this from anywhere they have an internet connection, at any time, and ultimately in a safe way," said Baker.

Qualia reported a 350% increase in online notary service orders in March from January. About 61% of title and escrow companies transitioned to working remotely since lockdowns started, according to a recent survey by the company. Additionally, 24% of participating companies already used RON, while 62% either planned to adopt the capability or are strongly considering it.

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