Starting a career as a remote closing agent can be a rewarding and fulfilling career path for those interested in the real estate industry. In recent years, remote work has become increasingly popular across various industries, including real estate. One such position in the real estate industry that can be done remotely is that of a closing agent. A closing agent is responsible for coordinating the final steps of a real estate transaction, including the signing of legal documents and the transfer of funds.
A career as a remote closing agent can be a great career option for those who want the flexibility of working from home or anywhere with an internet connection. However, it does require certain skills and qualifications.
In this blog, we will discuss the steps you can take to become a remote closing agent, including the necessary education and training, required certifications, and the skills needed to succeed in this role. Whether you're a recent college graduate or a seasoned professional looking for a career change, this guide will provide you with the information you need to start your journey toward becoming a successful remote closing agent.
Who Is a Remote Closing Agent?
A remote closing agent is a professional who handles the final stages of a real estate transaction by coordinating and overseeing the signing of closing documents between the buyer, seller, and lender. They are typically hired by the title company or escrow agent and work remotely to ensure a smooth and efficient closing process.
The remote closing agent may review documents, verify signatures, notarize documents, and coordinate the transfer of funds. They play a critical role in ensuring that the real estate transaction is completed accurately and efficiently, and they must have a deep understanding of the legal and financial aspects of the closing process.
What Does a Remote Closing Agent Do?
A remote closing agent, also known as a remote notary, is a professional who handles the closing process for real estate transactions virtually. They facilitate the signing of legal documents and ensure that all parties involved in the transaction comply with legal requirements.
The role of a remote closing agent includes verifying the identities of the signers, ensuring that all documents are correctly signed and notarized, and overseeing the electronic transmission of signed documents to the appropriate parties. Additionally, they may also provide guidance on the process, answer questions, and address any issues that arise during the closing.
Remote closing agents are becoming increasingly popular as more real estate transactions are conducted virtually. They use advanced technology to securely and accurately verify the identities of the signers and to ensure that all documents are executed correctly.
Statistics to Show How Valuable a Closing Agent Is
When it comes to being a closing agent, there is more to it than meets the eye. For instance, did you know that their hourly wage is, on average, $22.88? It comes to $47,582 annually. The career is anticipated to expand by 7% between 2018 and 2028, creating 32,400 employment openings nationwide.
The data science team at Zippia conducted research on a database of millions of profiles and discovered the following findings on jobs as closing agents:
- A legal assistant has the most popular position after a closing agent.
- Currently, there are over 27,073 vacancies for closing agents in the US labor market.
- Closing agents get between $40,000 and $56,000 per year in pay.
- A bachelor's degree is held by about 46% of closing agents.
How to Become a Remote Closing Agent
To become a remote closing agent, you typically need to have a combination of education, experience, and skills in the real estate industry. Here are some steps you can take:
1. Get a Degree
While a degree is not always required to become a remote closing agent, obtaining a degree in a relevant field such as real estate, business administration, finance, or accounting can help you stand out to potential employers and provide you with a deeper understanding of the industry. Some colleges and universities offer programs specifically focused on real estate closings or real estate law. Obtaining a degree can also help you develop transferable skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication which are important for success as a remote closing agent.
Alternatively, you can look for internship opportunities that allow you to gain hands-on experience in the real estate industry. Consider taking advantage of these opportunities to build your skills and network with professionals in your field. You can consider taking courses online on platforms like Coursera and Alyson. Depending on the program you choose, coursework may include real estate law, property management, finance, accounting, and business management. It's important to stay organized and manage your time effectively to complete your coursework on time.
2. Get Licensed
Depending on your state, you may need to obtain a real estate license or a notary public license to become a remote closing agent. A real estate license is required in some states to conduct real estate transactions, including closings, while a notary public license is required in many states to witness and authenticate signatures on legal documents.
To obtain a real estate license, you typically need to complete a pre-licensing course, pass a licensing exam, and meet other state-specific requirements. These requirements may include a background check, continuing education courses, and ongoing licensure renewal.
To become a notary public, you typically need to complete a training course, pass a notary exam, and meet other state-specific requirements. These requirements may include a background check, a notary bond, and ongoing notary commission renewal.
3. Gain Experience
To become a remote closing agent, it is helpful to gain experience in the real estate industry, preferably in a role that involves real estate closings. This can include working as a real estate agent, title examiner, closing coordinator, or another related position.
Working in these roles can help you gain a deeper understanding of the real estate transaction process, including the role of the closing agent. It can also help you build a network of contacts in the industry, including real estate agents, title companies, and mortgage lenders, which can be valuable when searching for job opportunities.
While gaining experience in the real estate industry can help you develop a deeper understanding of the closing process and build a network of industry contacts.
5. Develop Skills
Remote closing agents need to have a combination of hard and soft skills to effectively manage real estate closings from a remote location. Some important skills include
- Communication: Remote closing agents need to communicate effectively with clients, real estate agents, title companies, and other parties involved in the closing process.
- Organization: Remote closing agents need to be highly organized to manage multiple closings and ensure all necessary paperwork is completed accurately and on time.
- Attention to detail: Remote closing agents need to pay close attention to detail to ensure all documents are accurate and complete, and to identify any potential issues that could delay or derail the closing.
- Time management: Remote closing agents need to be able to manage their time effectively to meet deadlines and ensure all aspects of the closing process are completed on schedule.
- Technology: Remote closing agents need to be comfortable working with technology, including software programs and online platforms used for real estate closings.
Building a network of contacts in the real estate industry can be valuable when searching for job opportunities as a remote closing agent. You can start by attending industry events, joining real estate associations, and connecting with professionals on LinkedIn.
In addition, you can reach out to real estate agents, title companies, and mortgage lenders in your area to introduce yourself and learn more about their businesses. Building strong relationships with these professionals can lead to referrals for new business and help you stay informed about industry trends and job opportunities. Offering to speak at industry events or providing training sessions for other professionals can also help you establish yourself as an expert in your field. This can lead to new business opportunities and help you build your network.
6. Find Job Opportunities
Once you have the necessary education, licensing, and experience, you can begin searching for job opportunities as a remote closing agent. You can start by searching online job boards such as Indeed, LinkedIn, or Glassdoor, as well as specialized job boards that focus on the real estate industry.
You can also reach out to real estate agents, title companies, and mortgage lenders in your network to inquire about any available opportunities or to express your interest in working as a remote closing agent. Additionally, you can consider working as a freelancer or independent contractor, offering your services to clients on a per-project basis.
7. Stay up To Date with Industry Trends
To be successful as a remote closing agent, it's important to stay up to date with industry trends and changes. You can do this by reading industry publications, attending conferences and webinars, and participating in professional associations and networking groups.
By staying informed about industry trends, you can anticipate changes in the market and position yourself as a valuable resource to clients and colleagues. Additionally, continuing education courses and training programs can help you stay current on industry best practices and regulations, which is important for maintaining your licensure and staying competitive in the job market.
Tools for A Remote Closing Agent
As a remote closing agent, you will need a range of tools to facilitate your work. Here are some essential tools:
- Computer: You will need a reliable computer with a fast processor and adequate memory to run the necessary software and complete your work efficiently.
- Internet connection: A high-speed internet connection is necessary to access the necessary online tools and communicate with your clients.
- Video conferencing software: You will need video conferencing software, such as Zoom, Skype, or Google Meet, to communicate with clients, conduct virtual meetings, and complete remote closings.
- Electronic signature software: Electronic signature software such as DocuSign, HelloSign, or Adobe Sign is essential for signing and sending documents securely and remotely.
- Secure file-sharing software: You will need secure file-sharing software such as Dropbox or Google Drive to store, share, and collaborate on documents with clients.
- Cloud-based real estate transaction management software: Software such as Dotloop, SkySlope, or Paperless Pipeline can help you manage your workflow, track documents, and collaborate with other parties in the transaction.
- Telephone or messaging service: You will need a reliable telephone or messaging service to communicate with clients and other parties involved in the transaction.
- Scanner or mobile scanning app: You may need a scanner or mobile scanning app such as CamScanner to scan, digitize, and send paper documents remotely.
Overall, as a remote closing agent, it's important to have the right technology tools to provide a smooth and efficient closing process for your clients.
In today's fast-paced world, many industries have adapted to remote work, and the real estate industry is no exception. Remote closing agents are becoming increasingly popular as more and more people choose to work from home or remote locations. Becoming a remote closing agent requires a particular skill set, including excellent communication skills, attention to detail, and knowledge of real estate law and contracts.
In conclusion, becoming a remote closing agent can be a rewarding and fulfilling career choice for those who are interested in the real estate industry and enjoy working from home or in remote locations. It requires dedication, hard work, and a willingness to continuously learn and adapt to new technologies and regulations. If you are willing to put in the effort, becoming a remote closing agent can open up new opportunities and allow you to work in a fast-paced and exciting industry.