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Breaking the mould: How to adopt best practice in property paperwork

12 July 2018 Tim McKibbin

The real estate industry is embracing a huge range of digital technologies. We use messaging platforms to talk to our colleagues and clients, we manage our banking online, we’ve embraced mobile apps for property searches and we’re marketing on social media. But the exchange of contracts remains a paper glitch in this electronic chain.

Countless hours are spent printing, scanning, posting and couriering documents, not to mention phoning clients to check on the arrival of documents, sending reminders about deadlines and chasing signatures.

This age-old process doesn’t keep up with customers’ expectations of fast and efficient service, instant access to documents, online payments and filing in the cloud. And, let’s be honest, it’s frustrating for agents, too.

Waiting around for documents to be printed, scanned or delivered ties agents to the office, and getting physical signatures can mean you’re driving all over town to get a deal done. This increases your costs and eats into the time you could otherwise be spending on prospecting, listing and selling.


Moving to an electronic process of managing contracts means they can be instantly received, signed, actioned and the sale process can continue, no matter where each party is located, or what time it is.

For agents, this not only means being tied to the office less, it gives them the potential to boost earnings because each sale can be completed more quickly and more clients can be serviced.

Making a change like this can seem like a big step, but ease of use is fundamental to these systems, so there is little to no learning curve involved. You and your clients will be guided through the whole process.

Here are a few simple things that you can do to prepare for, and embed, this change across your business:

1. Do your homework. Understand the benefits that adopting technology such as DocuSign through REI Forms Live will deliver to your business.
2. Build awareness of the benefits the change will deliver to get colleagues excited about the switch.
3. Identify a change champion to help you roll the technology out across the business.
4. Introduce your team to the systems so they understand how to use the technology and can take full advantage of what it offers.
5. Reinforce the benefits. Share success stories, tangible benefits to make sure people understand how the technology is helping the business, and the potential it has to help them as individual agents.

Switching to electronic exchange isn’t just about making your job easier; it’s a step towards more professional practices that will deliver a better customer experience and create more flexible, efficient, and less stressful working days for agents.

Breaking the mould: How to adopt best practice in property paperwork
Tim McKibbin
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