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TOP 10 SIGNING MISTAKES (and How to Avoid Them)

Updated: Sep 4, 2021

by David S. Waller, Esq.

10. NOT confirming your appointments 24 Hours in advance. Please reach out to your Borrowers 24 hours in advance. This allows ample time for your Borrowers to get back to you. Please confirm basic details about the loan, the place and time of appointment and whether you need to conduct a brief review of the loan documents with the Borrower before heading out to the appointment. Always leave a voicemail. Also, if the Borrower does not return the call, call again and also text the Borrower. Key is to REACH the Borrower and establish a great rapport prior to the Closing.

9. NOT Informing the Borrower You Will Be Late and Keeping the Borrower Informed as to your Arrival Time. If you are running late to an appointment, always call the Borrower and keep them in the loop. Many Borrowers consider it very disrespectful not to consider their time and if you are running late they may be able to get some things done instead of waiting around.

8. NOT Completing Your Acknowledgements (the Jurat) Correctly. Your Notary Acknowledgements must always be truthful as to the PLACE (indicated in the STATE and COUNTY section usually in the upper left). If the County or State is not correct you must strike it and put the correct PLACE. WHO is signing before you (remember to strike through anyone's name who is NOT at the closing), and the DATE (again if the date is wrong you must strike it and put the accurate DATE of signing). Always INSPECT each Jurat and make sure the information is correct. Don't assume any pre-printed information is correct.

7. NOT Asking for Help at the Closing Table. Many problems and issues that arise at the closing can be resolved if you reach out for some help. Often, another Attorney or Notary can help get the closing over the finish line. You should also reach out to the company that hired you as well as the Company who needs the document signed. If you ask for help often you can overcome the Borrower's objections.

6. NOT Prepping your Documents in Advance - Always take the time when you are not rushed to PRINT out your documents and to review them page by page. Make sure you have all of the pages and that there are no "cut offs" at the bottom. Reprint any page that didn't print out correctly. I recommend applying all of my acknowledgements in advance of the closing and apply post-its for reminders to myself of anything I might miss. I place the prepped job in the overnight envelope I intend to use with the label on it all ready to go once I complete the signing. I also always make sure I have blue pens, my notary stamp and anything else I need to complete the signing. Checking the confirmation details and Google maps in advance is also highly recommended.

5. NOT Sending out Your Documents on Time. Lenders need to fund immediately after the right of rescission. In order to do so they need their documents sent back. Please take your time to review them but your documents should be tracking within 24 hours of your closing. Please always get a receipt when you drop them with UPS or FedEx.

4. Not Handling FKA - NKA - Trustee, Attorney in Fact Signatures etc. Correctly. If you encounter a signature like this and you are not sure how to handle it please reach out for assistance. The golden rule is to sign the way the name is shown but usually with the Trustee you can just sign the name. Typically, when there is an Attorney in Fact you must sign out both the Attorney in Fact and the principal. Bottom Line is if you are not sure please ask for guidance as any defect can result in a re-sign or post closing work.

3. Not Initialing Changes or "Bold Overs" or Striking Changes Correctly. Please apply your initials to all changes or corrections. All corrections should be handled with a SINGLE STRAIGHT LINE through the wrong text or number then initiated followed by the correct information in that order when possible. No scribble scrabbles or white out. This also applies to mis-stamps, errant marks etc. Think of your Strike though followed by your initials as your magic eraser.

2. Not Checking Your Documents at the Closing Table. Always spend an extra 5 minutes and go through your documents page by page. Make sure you have all Internal pages filled out and that you always have a copy of all IDs of ALL signers. Taking the extra time to go through each page will ensure that you don't need to circle back for any missed signatures.

1. Not Carefully Reviewing Your Documents Before You Send Them Out. Before you send out your documents please review ALL the pages to make sure there are no missing initials, signatures, and that you have completed all of your acknowledgements accurately. If you are not sure of something, reach out to me so I can go over it with you. You can always scan your entire document package to me and I will go over every page. When you review your documents, try to imagine you are a title examiner looking for mistakes. Carefully review each page until you are certain you have a perfect set.

This article was written by:

David S. Waller, Esq. is the Founder and CEO of:

WALLER LAW CLOSINGS, LLC - We Make Loan Signings Easy! - (201) 566-2232

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