This post was inspired by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP & Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist for the Active Rain Challenge for the month of March.
Notarizing a Grant Deed - no big deal, right? Of course not, provided you live in the United States that is.
As many of you know, I have had quite a few sellers over the years who were living in different parts of the world, and not just the United States. They would have to make an appointment at the American Embassy and spend about $100 or so USD to have the Grant Deed notarized by the resident American Consul. I happened to be in the midst of a not-so-simple land sale, nor was it an all-cash transaction. The seller was Canadian, the buyer had a land loan, and there was a time constraint involved in getting the Grant Deed signed. The timing of this was the first quarter of 2020, so now you can probably guess where I am going with this. Lo and behold, here comes the onset of the Covid Pandemic shutdown, hence the American Embassy was closed. To make things more interesting, the land was located in the Montecito Heights area of Los Angeles, the buyer and the buyer’s agent were in the Arroyo Seco District of Los Angeles, the Escrow Company was in Beverly Hills and as I already mentioned, the seller was in Canada. The final piece of this puzzle is that the hard money land lender was located out of state.
The Title Company made it clear that the Grant Deed needed to be signed by a U.S. Notary. How could we accomplish this if the American Embassy was shut down because of the Pandemic? The Escrow and Title Officers were not very helpful with suggestions, but of course this is not something with which any of us had prior experience. The Seller was kind and remained motivated to make it happen, but again, because of the Pandemic Shutdown, he could not cross the U.S./Canada border.
In spite of all of these hurdles, the Seller and I remained creative, and we managed to find a U.S. Traveling Notary who was willing to meet the Seller at the U.S./Canada border. There they sat - masked and six feet apart with the Seller on the Canadian side and the Traveling Notary on the U.S. side. The Seller signed the Grant Deed, the Notary notarized it, returned to the nearest FedEx location and off the Grant Deed went to the Escrow Company in Beverly Hills.
The loan documents had been signed earlier and the hard money Lenders reviewed them for a few days. We were ready to close, but now we had to wait for the buyer who took five more days to bring in the remainder of the funds. All in all, it all turned out well at the end but not without some stressful days and weeks in between.
Once the sale was recorded, I was so thrilled to send an email to my client saying “Congratulations! You are no longer the owner of this vacant land”. He wrote back saying “Many thanks it could not have happened without you.” Truth be told, it really took the creative efforts and willingness of not only me, but my Seller too, and the Traveling Notary. It really does take a village sometimes, and real estate can be very fulfilling when you work with a good team of people and your clients know you are truly doing your best for them. As much as we like smooth escrows and closings, we wouldn't have stories to share for challenges such as this without a few that are out of the ordinary!
Wishing you a safe and healthy life and I look forward to your comments. If you are looking for a knowledgeable, focused and goal-oriented Realtor in the Beverly Hills area who will help you achieve your Real Estate goals, please reach out to me directly! If you are looking for a pet friendly Beverly Hills Realtor who can handle and sell the most difficult properties that no one else could, please reach out to me directly!! If you are considering buying or selling a home, a luxury home, luxury investment real estate, luxury vacation homes, or luxury beach properties in Southern California, Los Angeles, Century City, Westwood, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Marina Del Rey, Venice or Malibu, feel free to contact me at 310.486.1002 ( m) email@example.com or visit one of my websites at https://www.endrebarath.com I contribute a portion of my commission to local animal rescue organizations. Endre Barath, Jr. Realtor at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties DRE#01238708
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