colorado springs: Not 'closed' on Sunday means closing on Sundays - 04/19/09 07:01 AM
I did a closing this morning at 10:30 a.m. in Colorado Springs.
What's so unusual about that, you're probably asking.
It's Sunday.
To a notary signing agent, being asked to do a closing on a Sunday morning is not at all unusual.  For those of us who are available 24/7, it's part of the job.  We gladly provide the service to the mortgage industry.
The disadvantage for the notary signing agent is that, we don't have a "day off".
There is no "Miller Time".
We never know when we'll be called to do a closing, so we have … (4 comments)

colorado springs: Waiting for a closing confirmation - 01/10/09 06:59 PM
I got a call to do a closing. I agreed to do it.
I waited for a closing confirmation so I could start preparing. None came. An hour later. Still no confirmation. I called the company. Someone other than the person I spoke to answered and told me that they are still getting the loan documents together. 
I explained that I need a confirmation, or some information so I at least know where I'm going. I also want to contact the borrowers. 
That person told me that the closing isn't in Colorado Springs, as I was told.  It's actually in Pueblo.
Pueblo … (0 comments)

colorado springs: Mobile Offices: Are they necessary? - 01/08/09 06:18 AM
It usually goes like this:  I'll have a closing at 4 p.m.  I'll have another closing at 6 p.m. Normally there would be no problem handling those two assignments.  Colorado Springs isn't that big.  I can finish the 4pm closing, then go straight to the 6pm closing.
There's just one problem: I haven't received the loan documents for the 6 p.m. closing.  The title company is waiting for final HUD approval.
Now it's not a simple matter of going from one closing to the other.  I have documents that I need to print.  And if I drive back to my office … (8 comments)

colorado springs: Being a notary signing agent in Colorado Springs - 11/03/07 07:51 PM
One of the things I like about Colorado Springs is that, life here in 'the Springs' is pretty simple.  I'm originally from a big city (Detroit, MI), and this is a pleasant change. Denver is not as large as Detroit, but it's still too big for me. I only go up there if I really have to. It isn't even necessary to go there to catch a flight, because Colorado Springs has its own airport. I've lived here for 18 years, and this is now home to me. It has just about everything one could want.
Colorado Springs is such a nice … (2 comments)

colorado springs: Restaurant closings - 11/01/07 01:56 AM
Despite the downturn in the housing market, this is not, as the title seems to suggest, about restaurants that are going out of business. The restaurants in Colorado Springs, at least, are doing very well. 
No, this is about mortgage loan closings.
One of the conveniences of having the closing done by a notary signing agent is that the borrower can choose where they want to do the closing. For many of the closings that I have done, the borrower chose to do it at a restaurant.
This can be for many reasons. They are doing the signing of their loan documents during … (5 comments)

colorado springs: RESPA signing in Colorado City - 10/30/07 03:20 PM
Just when I thought I could take my business clothes off for the day and relax, I got a call to do a RESPA signing this evening in Colorado City. My first thought was, are they sure it's Colorado City, and not Colorado Springs? That's a bit out of my territory. I'd feel like a poacher.
It's south of Pueblo, almost 70 miles away. It's not that it's too far. It's just that there are a lot of notary signing agents in Pueblo, which is a lot closer.  But if the company is willing to pay the additional travel fee, I'll go … (0 comments)

colorado springs: "Do you work on Sundays?" - 10/28/07 07:20 AM
"Yes, I do.", I replied, without hesitation.
I received a call this morning from a man who needed a notary to notarize a Power of Attorney for his mother who is in one of the hospitals here in Colorado Springs. He asked me if I am a mobile notary. I told him that I am.  He asked me if I worked on Sundays. I told him that I do.
Being available 7 days a week is something that I take for granted.  For the people who need a notary on the weekend, it sometimes comes as a surprise.
It shouldn't.
Life doesn't get put … (4 comments)

colorado springs: Colorado Springs Downtown Shuttle - 09/30/07 04:33 AM
Downtown Colorado Springs is becoming a more attractive and appealing part of the city. One of the things that makes it such is the Downtown Shuttle bus that runs through the heart of downtown. It provides a convenience to visitors, shoppers, people who work downtown, students, and even the occasional person like myself who is curious to see what it's like to ride the Downtown Shuttle bus.
As you can see from this sign, the service is free. It's easy to locate one of the many bus stops along the 1.7-mile route downtown because of the distinctive signs.
And there is also a schedule … (2 comments)

colorado springs: Colorado Springs Public Transportation: Riding the bus - 09/09/07 09:01 AM
The movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, made a profound impression on me. One of the things that impressed me was the fact that Chris Gardner depended on public transportation to get wherever he had to go.
Because of the nature of my work, there is no way that I could do it using public transportation. Nevertheless I wanted to experience what it would be like to ride the bus in Colorado Springs: the Mountain Metropolitan Transit.
This is the bus stop near where I live on Verde Drive. There is a bench so that passengers can sit while waiting for the bus.  In … (0 comments)

colorado springs: Colorado Springs' 21st Century Charter School - 08/26/07 04:06 AM
There's a new kid on the block. Or should I say, new kids on the block.
There is a new school in Colorado Springs, the 21st Century Charter School  (grades K - 10), located at 525 East Costilla. The 21st Century Charter Schools are sponsored by the GEO (Greater Educational Opportunities) Foundation.  The principal is Kurt Walker, a former Classical Academy teacher and Teacher of the Year.
You can learn more about the school by visiting the 21st Century Charter School website.
Additional information about the GEO Foundation can be obtained by visiting the U.S. Department of Education website.
21st Century Charter School of Colorado … (0 comments)

colorado springs: What to do to get an increase in your fee - 08/22/07 09:47 AM
I got a call today to do a closing tomorrow evening in Colorado Springs.  I was on my bike, on my way to drop off some loan documents from a closing I did yesterday. 
The caller said that the closing is in Colorado Springs, but Colorado Springs encompasses a very large area.  I quoted my normal fee to do a refinance.  And since I was on my bike, of course I didn't have any maps or zip code listings with me.
When I got back to my office I checked my email, opened up the confirmation, and put the address into Mapquest … (3 comments)

colorado springs: Linda saved the day - 06/29/07 09:41 PM
I was in a closing yesterday morning. At the same time UPS had delivered a package of loan documents for another closing that I had to do. The company that sent the documents marked the package so that it would require a signature. The driver left a note on the door, as he's supposed to do, letting me know that he would make a second attempt the next day.  Well, the next day is too late when you need the loan documents today.
I called the UPS 800 number and told them the problem. I expressed how urgent it was that I have that package, as soon … (3 comments)

colorado springs: June is Colorado Bike Month. So I rode my bike to the closing. - 06/20/07 02:47 AM
Normally I go into a closing carrying a briefcase. For one of my closings yesterday, I was carrying bicycle panniers.
I enjoy cycling, and do it as often as possible. Not only is it a good form of exercise, it's also a good form of transportation. If I have an errand to do, such as dropping off loan documents from a closing, I'll ride my bike. Most of the time I'll use a backpack. But I also have panniers to use when the load is very heavy.
I also use it for riding around town to take pictures for localism. And long distances … (4 comments)

colorado springs: A nice day to go on a Hike ... for Habitat - 2007 - 06/17/07 03:23 AM
It was a perfect day for the 2007 Hike for Habitat in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The weather was nice, the turnout was huge, with over 600 hikers, and the scenery along the way through Monument Valley Park was beautiful. 
This is the assembly point at the pavillion in Monument Valley Park. Many of the participants had already registered in advance. You could also register on the day of the hike. Each participant received a t-shirt before the start of the event.
The distance of the hike was ideal: 4 miles. Long enough to get a good exercise, yet short enough so that … (0 comments)

colorado springs: Habitat for Humanity: building more than houses - 06/10/07 07:42 AM
The mission statement of Habitat for Humanity is simple: " ... provide simple, decent places to live for families who cannot afford a home by conventional means, through building and rehabilitating houses in partnership with the community and prospective homeowners."
Accomplishing that mission is difficult. Habitat for Humanity needs help. It depends on volunteers and contributions.  And there will never be a point at which it has more than what it needs to accomplish the mission. There is always work to be done.  And not all of the work involves constructing homes. There are many areas in which people can volunteer their … (12 comments)

colorado springs: Walking to a closing in Pikes Peak Park, Colorado Springs - 06/02/07 09:34 PM
No, my car didn't break down. And I didn't run out of gas. 
How else do you get to a loan closing, when the distance is only a little more than a half a mile from where you live?  It didn't make sense to get in my car and drive for such a short distance.  And it was such a beautiful day.  So I walked.
This is my neighborhood, Verde Drive. 'Verde' means 'green' in Spanish. And that is the word that best describes the scenery. There are a lot of trees in this area. This is the view heading east on … (0 comments)

colorado springs: German Influences on Colorado Springs - Part 3: Wimberger's Old World Bakery and Delicatessen - 05/23/07 09:16 AM
Eine Kur für Sehnsucht nach Deutschland (A cure for longing to be back in Germany)
If you're homesick for Germany, or looking for a place where you can find German delicacies, then you will certainly want to visit Wimberger's Old World Bakery and Delicatessen. It is situated on a quiet, tree-lined avenue. The exterior of the building with its Fachwerk (half-timbered) design gives you the feeling immediately that you are at a German establishment. 
In der alten Heimat (In the old country.)
One of the first things you experience, when you step inside, is that you are in another country. It's just like being in … (2 comments)

colorado springs: Monument Valley Park: Downtown, Colorado Springs - 05/17/07 09:16 AM
There are many nice aspects to downtown Colorado Springs. One of the nicest is Monument Valley Park. Come inside. I'm sure you'll like what you find here.
The park is easily accessible. As you can see, there is a stairway to the right, and a ramp to the left for wheelchairs.
Monument Valley Park is truly an oasis. When you're in the park you get the feeling that you are in another place and time. It is very beautiful, and peaceful here. Take your shoes off, and set a spell.
Off to the left is what appears to be a savanna, somewhere in the … (3 comments)

colorado springs: Colorado Wines: Pikes Peak Vineyards & Winery, Colorado Springs - 05/12/07 10:24 PM
It's still true. The real treasures are seldom lying out in the open. You have to dig for them.
Far off the beaten path, nestled in a grove in southeast Colorado Springs, is Pikes Peak Vineyards & Winery. I visited there and had the good fortune of meeting winemaker Paul Tafoya, who took me on a tour of the winery.  I also spent a little time doing some wine tasting.
Paul has been making wine here for more than 25 years. He is pictured to the right, standing in one of the vineyards.
This is one of the machines that is used in the … (2 comments)

colorado springs: Spring Creek residents, enjoying the TND way of living - 05/07/07 07:22 AM

I had the opportunity, and pleasure to speak with some residents of Spring Creek, a Traditional Neighborhood Development, in southeast Colorado Springs. This is what we talked about: 
I am speaking with Eric and Tamara Brown, residents of Spring Creek, and I'd like to ask you, first of all, how long have you lived here in Spring Creek?
We've been here for about 2 months.
Where are you from?
We're originally from Denver.
What attracted you to this area?
It was pretty much, my place of employment is about 15 minutes away from here. And our former house that we had, it was 15 minutes away … (1 comments)