Over the past few months I’ve learned a lot about the value in bringing efficiency and transparency to property transactions through USA-based business DocuSign who recently partnered with RP Data to introduce several very exciting initiatives to the Australian property market.

For those who have not previously heard of DocuSign, they are the custodians of the world’s most trusted electronic signature platform. With tens of millions of customers DocuSigning around 850,000 documents a day in 188 countries while also powering over 1 million members of the National Association of REALTORS in the US, DocuSign is the Global Standard for Electronic Signature.

But in my humble opinion, the name is little misleading. They are so much more than just electronic document signing. DocuSign’s strength lies in their simple yet powerful definition and management of document workflow once the document is electronically DocuSigned.

Being green, effective and efficient:

RP Data has been working with DocuSign on several fronts.  Firstly we’re eating our own dog food as we embark on the journey to DocuSign our company from the inside out.  We’re also doing our bit to reduce paper while simultaneously becoming a more streamlined 21st Century business that distributes company documentation and forms electronically; whether it’s HR recruitment forms, internal expense claim forms, approvals and most importantly client contracts we’re reviewing our company processes and streamlining all documents with DocuSign.

DocuSign for Mortgage Finance:

Our second initiative is the introduction of DocuSign to the Australian Mortgage and Finance industry. The response has been nothing short of amazing. Many of the big banks along with major mortgage broking groups, aggregators and credit unions are engaged in projects to bring DocuSign into their businesses with a particular emphasis on streamlining the mountain of paper work involved with mortgage lending.  Lenders and Brokers are all working towards the very attainable, not-too-distant goal where consumers submit their mortgage application paperwork online and the forms, data and workflow trigger the straight-through processing of the loan application. This effectively takes the ‘time to yes’ for mortgage finance from weeks to potentially a day or even hours.

DocuSign Transaction Rooms:

Perhaps the most exciting initiative of all is RP Data’s collaboration with DocuSign to launch DocuSign Transaction Rooms for Australian Real Estate Agents.  Think of Transaction Rooms as an electronic document deal room for each property transaction.  This is a hardened and secure platform being used by over one million real estate agents in the USA.

Our Vision is to streamline the complex world of buying and selling property:

  • The Real Estate agent subscribes to DocuSign Transaction Rooms for a flat monthly fee. For the flat fee the agent has unlimited transaction rooms and unlimited DocuSign document signing.
  • All other parties invited to use the DocuSign Transaction Room participate at their discretion and there is no charge to these parties.
  • A CMA report triggers the creation of a DocuSign Transaction Room
  • The agent can then sign the authority to list and other documents with the vendor in the Transaction Room.
  • Further real estate forms such as the contract of sale can also be transacted in the deal room by connecting the buyer and seller.
  • (If the agent’s forms provider is integrated, forms could also be pre-filled and pre-populated into the room).
  • Related parties and their documents are progressively invited by the real estate agent to also contribute their documents to the DocuSign Transaction Room for sharing and/or signing by another party in the room
  • Legal teams can be invited to review contracts
  • Building and pest inspections can be shared with the buyer;
  • A mortgage broker or lender could use the agent’s Transaction Room for signing their documents with the buyer.
  • To address security concerns, DocuSign envelopes are encrypted while stored and while being transferred (in rest and in motion). Documents by default are not shared.  The person uploading a document must deliberately choose to share their document with another party for viewing or signing.

The end result is an overall efficiency in the property transaction process with the agent positioned at the very centre. A core goal of RP Data is always to empower our professional customers. Parties communicate more freely leading to more transparency and efficiency in the Australian property market. In parallel, leading banks, lenders, brokers and credit unions are busy re-tooling with DocuSign for their own front-of-house and back-of-house processes which then link in to the agent and make the process much more seamless for the buyer and seller.

The DocuSign Transaction Room service will be in Australian Beta testing within the next month or two and will likely launch the end of this year.

When DocuSign launches the Transaction Rooms an RP Data powered agent can purchase unlimited transaction rooms and unlimited document signing for a flat $20 per seat per month.

There will be extra efficiency benefits too for RP Data subscribing agents including the auto creation of the DocuSign Transaction Room and pre population of the room with RP Data property information to minimise the need for data re-keying

DocuSign’s Transaction Rooms is also a very complimentary service to real estate forms businesses. There are various Australian Real Estate Institutes and private businesses that provide excellent services supplying the Australian real estate industry with their forms (both paper based and/or electronic). In the USA, forms providers like WINforms, zipLogix®, Realfast, FormSimplicity, MercuryFirst and FlexMLS have each integrated their forms with DocuSign. The forms provider integrations compliment the DocuSign Transaction Room experience and help agents to close more deals with the fastest, easiest, most secure way to get client signatures.

When launched in Australia later this year, DocuSign Transaction Rooms will no doubt have a positive and disruptive effect for both the real estate and the mortgage and finance industries. Are you DocuSign ready?  Come to the RP Data stand at AREC to learn more about how to DocuSign your business.

Thanks for Reading.

Lee ?

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