Over the next few weeks I am going to be doing a series of posts on how I use technology in my real estate business to make my job easier. There are a few tools I have integrated into my business over the last year I could not imagine living without, this series will focus on those. I will discuss not only what they are, but why I use them and how I use the.
The first tool is Docusign. Docusign is an electronic signature program that makes signing contracts so much easier and cleaner.
With an offer to be mad and no fax access…
I had a client from Utah who was in Tempe looking at a house. They were looking for a winter home to escape Utah’s snow. When they got back to Utah they called me and said they wanted to put an offer in on the house.
We discussed the details and I said great, I will fax you over the contract in about an hour. One small problem, they did not have a fax machine and lived more than 30 minutes from a Staples or somewhere they could receive a fax. So I knew it was time to break down and get an electronic signature program.
Geek agents agree on Docusign
I turned to Twitter on a Saturday night and asked my fellow agents what program they would recommend. Almost immediately responses started coming back “Docusign” from many agents I respected. Within 5 minutes I got a message from @Docusign saying if I had any questions about the service shoot them over via Twitter and they would answer them. I was sold, I was going to at least try Docusign. I signed up and within minutes I had an issue, not an issue with the program, I had messed up my registration because I was rushing. Now it was close to 9pm on a Saturday night and An (with 1 N), who is the mastermind behind the @Docusign Twitter account, was on the phone with me helping me out. Now that is service.
Less paper, more organized
Fast forward to now, and I am amazed how I ever got along without the program. I now use about 90% less paper in my business than I did before. I am not the “save the environment” or “green” type of guy, but the reason I like being paperless is for organization. Organization has been a challenge to me since I got my first Lincoln Logs when I was 5 years old – they were always all over the place.
Paper has a way of multiplying on my desk. I go through phases where I get organized, but I have been going through these phases for the past 20 years. It had no hope of ever really getting better. But now, it is multiples better. I wrote over 50 offers last year, all but 1 were signed via Docusign. That meant no paper for me. I write the offer on my computer, send it to them or sit down with them and go over it on the computer, then have them click the mouse to sign.
Once signed it creates a PDF I keep on my computer (that is coming in the next couple of weeks) and now I can email to the co-broke agent and your Broker. As easy as that, there is not deterioration from multiple faxes and when it comes time to sign all those addendums I send those to them via Docusign again.
How to save yourself 6 hours a week
I cannot tell you how many hours a week I save with Docusign. I asked An if there was any research and she said according to their studies an agent can save 6 hours a week. Now that seems high to me, but 3-4 hours a week seems very reasonable. That means I get an extra 2 work days a month compared to what I used to. Then again, when I think of the hours I used to spend going through those
files stacks on my desk looking for something it may be more than I am thinking. But either way, no more driving around hours on end each week getting signatures, I can do an addendum at 11pm, shoot it off with instructions and an explanation and when I wake up in the morning the addendum can be signed.
Makes an agent’s job easier
Currently just south of 20,000 agents are using Docusign. I am always pleased when I get an offer from another agent who is also using it. I am hoping in the near future most agents switch to some form of electronic signatures. If you are not using an electronic signature program, you should be. The time saving ability, money saving opportunities, the paperless office it creates and the clean contracts you will have will make this one of the best investments I have made in my career.
If you want more information Docusign updates their blog on a regular basis with best practices and easy tutorial videos!