If you’re in the process of buying a home but are not located within the state, one option may be to go through a remote home closing. A remote closing doesn’t require you to be physically present, but you can still be there virtually to ask questions and get answers. Pennsylvania has a Remote Online Notarization (RON) law, and lawyers in our firm are Pennsylvania e-notaries, so in Pennsylvania, remote closings are an option.
Remote closings, which you might also hear referred to as virtual closings, verify people’s identifications virtually rather than in person. All of your documents will be signed electronically. We use very secure software to complete these functions, so those signing must have a photo ID, a camera on their laptop or tablet, and remember specific details from their own credit history to prove their identity.
What can you expect during a remote closing?
There are a few things to expect during a remote closing.
Expect to get online to complete eMortgage documents
There is such a thing as a hybrid closing where you sign some documents in person but not others, but with a fully remote closing, you do everything online. You also have eMortgage documents, which are electronic documents that you sign to complete the mortgage paperwork. Pennsylvania allows such eMortgage documents and deeds to be recorded in every county.
You’ll get notarization through online means
At most traditional closings, there has to be a notarization agent present to help you confirm your identity. With a virtual process, this is all done through a video conference. You won’t need to meet in person, but you will need to have a video chat to complete the closing process. Make sure you bring your driver’s license and passport to the meeting (whether you log in at your desk or a local coffee shop).
Virtual methods aren’t always done from far away
Sometimes, the term “virtual closing” isn’t exactly what it seems, which is why you should verify what you need to do with your attorney and realtor. Some virtual closings are actually in-person e-notarizations, or IPENs, which means that you will sign documents virtually but be at the closing in person.
If you need to sign your documents from afar, there are options open to you in Pennsylvania. This is something to bring up with your realtor and attorney early in your search, so you can be sure the mortgage company is on board with the virtual closing on the home.