Have you done a complete transaction online?

Real Estate Agent with Realty Professionals, Inc.

I was talking to my friend Dick Betts the other day and we got talking about technology.  Dick is a National Real Estate Speaker and has a wealth of knowledge.  You can go to his website at www.DickBetts.com and see what all he teaches.

While talking the other night, I told him that I did a complete transaction online.  That's correct, a COMPLETE real estate transaction online.  It started with an e-mail several months earlier requesting some information about land sales in my market place.  I e-mailed the seller back and forth many times.  I didn't hear back from them for several months and then I received an e-mail stating that they wanted me to sell it for them.  We agreed on a price and I scanned the listing agreement, property disclosure forms and e-mailed them everything.  They printed it out, signed them and faxed them back to me, since they didn't have a scanner. 

I use a Fujitsu ScanSnap Scanner and I love it.  It is about the size of a small loaf of bread and it sits right next to my monitor on my desk.  This scanner will scan 15 pages per minute, both sides and in full color.  WOW! beat that!  The cost of this scanner is about $350-400 and I purchased mine at newegg.com for $350 and received a $50 mail in rebate. So shop around.  This is a piece of hardware I don't know how to do without.

Continue with my story.  I sent out a letter to about 25 property owners around the subject property.  Several of them showed interest but I was contacted by an adjacent land owner that lived out of town.  He was very interested in it.  We negotiated back and forth and finally was able to agree on a sale price without any mineral rights.  The buyer was buying the property in his trust and I had to direct everything for signing to the trust officer at the bank.  I drafted a final contract and sent it to the trust officer and they signed, scanned it and e-mailed it back to me.  I then forwarded the attachment to the seller and they printed it, signed it and faxed it back to me and I in turned scanned it and e-mailed it to the buyer for a complete file.  This also makes for a great paper trail.

The seller was an out of town seller also.  At closing, the documents were sent overnight to the seller.  The closing company received the documents and schedule the Trust Officer for the closing.  I NEVER met the SELLER or the BUYER in person.  I usually attend all of my closings and I did get to meet the trust officer at closing. 

Technology is here to stay.  Get use to it and it can help you do things like this.  Have a great teckie day!  HA! HA!

My name is Larry DeGroat and I am a Realtor at Realty Professionals, Inc. in Searcy, Arkansas 72143 and I sell new homes, existing homes, commercial property, farms and land as well as manage and own rental properties. If you are looking for real estate for an investment or a home, I will be glad to assist you! You can call my personal cell number at 501-278-7659 or e-mail me at Larry@Searcy4Sale.com. Visit my website at http://www.searcy4sale.com if you are looking for Searcy homes for sale or other areas.

Comments (10)

Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Larry~ I have been thinking about getting the Scansnap.  It wouldn't be a problem to use it with a laptop, would it?  Going totally paperless sounds like a grand idea to me! 

Mar 16, 2009 08:29 AM
Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Larry again.  I went and looked at Newegg and they are quite a few models.  Which model number did you get?

Mar 16, 2009 08:37 AM
Larry DeGroat
Realty Professionals, Inc. - Searcy, AR
ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GRI in Searcy

Laptop shouldn't be a problem.  It plugs in a usb port.  GREAT product!

I have the fi-5110EOX2 model but it is no longer available.  The newer version is Fujitsu ScanSnap S510.  They have just the scanner and looks like they have a bundle package also.  The bundle seems to have some extra software that came with the one I have (I may have purchased the bundle at that time, I don't remember, the software will read business cards and create a database of business cards)  I checked Fujitsu website and Newegg and there is a $50 mail in rebate as long as you purchase before March 31, 2009.  That makes the price $339 and $369 for the bundle package if purchased at newegg.com after rebate.  You can probably enter Fujitsu ScanSnap S510 in google and it will give you all kinds of information.  Check the owners comments on newegg and they agree with what I am saying.  It is a great tool.  I have also used it for scanning pictures into jpg format, much faster than those flatbed scanners.

Mar 16, 2009 11:26 AM
Larry DeGroat
Realty Professionals, Inc. - Searcy, AR
ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GRI in Searcy

Here is a video on youtube.com of the scanner at work.


Mar 16, 2009 11:30 AM
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

This is a testimonial for Larry and for the scanner.  I saw it in his office and decided I had to have one too!  I bought it and love it also.  I, too, Larry, did a whole transaction on line.  Remember that awful house that had everything stolen and it was shot up inside?  A guy from California bought it without seeing it for cash.  I did everything on line and using my little scanner.


Mar 16, 2009 01:10 PM
Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Larry and Barbara~ Thanks so much for the update and information.  Doing a whole transaction online would be great! 

Mar 17, 2009 02:36 PM
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Hi Larry,

Very nice.  I have often wondered why transaction management for real estate hasn't taken off...systems like the settlement room.

Thanks for sharing your experience.


Mar 17, 2009 03:54 PM
Patricia DelaMotte
Nothnagle REALTORS - Henrietta, NY
Having the Right Agent Makes All the Difference!

Wow, what a fantastic little piece of equipment!  And so easy to use.  One day we will all have them on our desks.  Did a transaction about 5 years ago.  Totally on line.  Seller was located in India so it was necessary (unless we wanted to send everything via International mail!!). It was one of my smoothest transactions!  Thanks for the info. 

Mar 18, 2009 12:51 AM
Betty Fletcher
Fletcher Property Management Inc CRMC® * www.FletcherPM.com - Little Rock, AR
MPM, RMP - Little Rock Arkansas Property Manager

Larry -

What a wonderful experience!  We manage rental properties for many owners that we have never met and do our contracts via email.  Definitely easier to do! Just haven't yet figured out how to get the bank to accept the scanned and emailed check! :-)

We use the Fujitsu ScanSnap Scanner in our property management business here in Little Rock.  In fact, we have 3 of them in the company and will be ordering a 4th this week since we have added a new staff person to the company.  For us the time savings far outweighs the nominal cost of the equipment.

Anyway, it sits on the corner of the desk and is extremely easy to use.  We now have all of our files electronically and once the documents are scanned, we simply shred the paper version. 

Thanks for sharing.

Mar 22, 2009 08:20 AM
Ryan Martin
Pacific Continental Realty, LLC - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham Commercial RE Broker

Great story Larry. I have put a handful of deals together completely online. All 3 buyers were from England and purchased property sight unseen and wired cash directly to the closing agent. There is a certain amount of excitement from putting a completely online deal together.

Mar 27, 2009 06:15 AM