Real Estate Word of the Day: Notarization

Notarization is a formal process of verifying the authenticity of a document and the identity of the signatories involved. This process is conducted by a notary public—a state-appointed official who acts as an impartial witness in the signing of important documents. The notary public ensures that the parties involved in the transaction understand the contents of the document and are signing it voluntarily.

The Notarization Process

The notarization process typically involves three key steps:

  1. The notary public checks the identification of each signatory to confirm they are who they claim to be. Acceptable forms of ID usually include government-issued documents such as driver’s licenses, passports, or identification cards.
  2. The signatories must physically appear before the notary public to sign the document. The notary witnesses the signing and ensures that all parties understand and are willing to sign the document without coercion.
  3. After verifying identities and witnessing the signatures, the notary public affixes their official seal or stamp on the document. They also record the notarization in their notarial journal for future reference.

Importance of Notarization in Real Estate

Notarization adds a layer of security to real estate transactions by verifying the identities of the signatories. This helps prevent fraud and ensures that the individuals signing the documents are indeed who they say they are. Many real estate documents, such as deeds, mortgages, and power of attorney forms, require notarization by law. Without notarization, these documents may not be legally binding or enforceable. A notarized document carries more weight in legal and business settings. It signifies that the document has been executed properly and that the signatories have been verified, enhancing the document's credibility. In case of disputes, notarized documents provide clear evidence that the signatories were properly identified and that they willingly signed the document. This can be invaluable in resolving legal conflicts.

With advancements in technology, notarization has evolved to meet the needs of modern real estate transactions. One notable innovation is Remote Online Notarization (RON). RON allows parties to complete the notarization process online through secure video conferencing platforms. This is especially beneficial in real estate, where buyers, sellers, and other stakeholders may be located in different geographic areas.

Looking to buy or sell your home on Staten Island? For all your real estate needs, look no further than Tom Crimmins Realty! Give us a call at (718) 370-3200, and we can provide you with professionally-trained agents who are flexible to all that you’re looking for!

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