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Matthew Faul
Commercial & Residential Real Estate
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7 Apps to Help You Stay Connected While Social Distancing

Apps to Stay Connected

Staying connected in a time of social distancing is no easy task. Yet, with all the new challenges our world is facing, we continue to find ways of maintaining our ties to one another. We think staying connected with loved ones is more important than ever, and our real estate agents are thrilled to share some of the apps we've been using to stay in touch. 

  1. Zoom
    Over the last couple of months, Zoom's popularity has skyrocketed, and not just for virtual business conferences, but social gatherings as well. The app can host up to 1,000 video participants in a session, making it great for getting large groups of friends together. Sessions under 40 minutes are free, but beyond that, you'll need a subscription. 
  2. Netflix Party
    Chances are you've been watching more TV than ever in 2020, but you're not alone if you miss having friends to binge your favorite shows with. Luckily, there's a solution for anyone who has a Netflix account and a Google Chrome web browser. Netflix Party is a Chrome extension that makes it possible to sync up your Netflix account with your friends' accounts, so you can watch TV in tandem, and even communicate back and forth. 
  3. WhatsApp
    A longtime favorite for folks who need to send text messages to international friends and family, WhatsApp has a lot of other features that are making it a popular app in the social distancing age. WhatsApp offers text messaging, audio, and video call functions and is compatible with Apple and Android devices, as well as Windows PCs. 
  4. Google Duo
    Chances are you know what Google is, but do you know what Google Duo is and how it can help you stay connected? Compatible with Apple and Android devices this helpful app lets you make video calls with those you love. Plus, you can make groups of up to 12 people and chat and make video calls within the group. 
  5. FaceTime
    Anyone with an iPhone has probably been using FaceTime since long before the pandemic struck, but this classic app is now more useful than ever. You can use it to video chat with friends and family around the world (as long as they also have an Apple device), and it even works over regular cellular service if you're not connected to the internet. 
  6. HouseParty
    One of the things we miss the most about how the world used to be is just hanging out and chatting with a few friends. HouseParty is a great option for fostering the easygoing vibe of a small get-together. It's a fun app that lets up to 8 people hang out in a virtual space. It also has screen sharing options and the ability to play virtual games. 
  7. Facebook Live
    Facebook has always provided a wide range of tools for staying connected, from sharing photos and videos to messaging with friends. But Facebook Live has become more useful than ever in recent times. It's been used to stream meetings, live music, stand-up comedy, even weddings! Our team has even found Facebook Live to be a great real estate tool for creating "virtual tours" of Bradenton homes for sale and Sarasota homes for sale.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can all stay connected while social distancing. At Wagner Realty, we still believe in the importance of human connection, and we're here to help you keep in touch while you're finding your dream home. 


Closing Real Estate Deals from a Distance With Virtual Technology

Closing deals with virtual technology

Continued advances in technology have made it easy and convenient to find a REALTOR® and search for homes online. Working with a REALTOR® is more important now than ever, as buyers and sellers navigate the "new normal" in the real estate industry.

Now, buyers typically work with an agent to view properties virtually, and then schedule showings with their REALTOR® for properties of great interest. When it comes time to present an offer, Wagner Realty agents can arrange for all documentation to be finalized virtually as well.

Until recently, closing on a property virtually was not common. Of course, the market has changed dramatically. Out of necessity, closings often need to be made without the physical presence of all parties involved. Virtual closings are one of the ways Wagner Realty agents are adhering to social distancing guidelines, while ensuring the safety of our clients.

Just a few short months ago, homebuyers would usually sit at a closing table to complete the transaction. Now, digital "e-closing" technology allows all parties involved to participate in a remote process to finalize the transaction. 

On January 1, 2020, Florida became the 11th state to adopt Remote Online Notarization, which paved the way for virtual "e-closings." Until then, title companies were restricted to traditional in-person closings where witnesses had to be in the same room and signers had to perform "wet ink signatures."

E-closings offer numerous advantages to traditional closings. They can provide convenience, better security, accuracy, validation quality, speed in document delivery, and funding times. They're also eco-friendly since documents are generated and stored electronically. E-closing platforms also apply a "tamper-evident seal," which exposes any attempt to alter the documents.

Now, there are four different closing scenarios:

  1. The traditional closing: all paper documents are signed in "wet ink" with a notary present and traditional ID verification.
  2. The Hybrid eClosing: procedural documents and disclosures are electronically signed; with a "wet ink" signature on the deed/mortgage and promissory note, a notary present and traditional ID verification.
  3. The InPerson eClosing: all documents are electronically signed on a laptop or tablet, with a notary present and traditional ID verification.
  4. Remote Notary Closing: all documents are electronically signed on a laptop or tablet; notary on webcam, new means of ID verification. It's important to note that not all lenders are accepting remote notary signings.

"My buyers fell in love with a new villa and utilized e-sign technology to sign the contract. They didn't need to leave the safety of their home to complete the transaction, which made them very happy!" - Nancy Allen, Wagner Realty SR 64 Branch Manager

"I recently assisted buyers who closed on their condo virtually, signing from the convenience of their workplaces. It could not have gone smoother!" – Mary Collandra, Wagner Realty El Conquistador Branch Manager

Virtual technology has also made it easier for foreign investors to close on real estate transactions from a distance. Closing deals remotely accommodates investors from around the world.

"We go out of our way to accommodate our clients so that they can enjoy a smooth closing experience," says Mary Ann Hostetler, Manager of WR Title Company, an affiliate of Wagner Realty, adding "we pride ourselves in going above and beyond to adapt to the changing mortgage environment."

Buyers should prepare for an e-closing with the same precautions as an in-person signing, meticulously following instructions for wire transfers. If you are looking to buy or sell a home, commercial property, or a business and you have questions, our REALTORS® are happy to help. We would love to assist you guiding you through the process of e-Closings and any other real estate questions you may have. Contact us today! 

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 11/26/2022. The listing information on this page last changed on 11/26/2022. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of Stellar MLS (last updated Sat 11/26/2022 12:03:11 AM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Wagner Realty may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --

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