It seems that everything is moving digital these days, and the rental market is no exception. For years, landlords have used electronic signatures for rental agreements and other transactions with tenants. This practice is expected to become even more prevalent in 2022. eSignatures will be considered an essential part of doing business in the rental market, especially since signing leases online is becoming increasingly common. Let’s talk about using electronic signatures for landlords and its benefits.
Benefits of an Electronic Signature for Landlords and Lease Agreements
If you are a landlord, you know that having tenants sign a lease agreement is an integral part of the renting process. In the past, this has meant meeting in person to sign the necessary paperwork. However, with the advent of electronic signatures, there is now a more efficient way to get the job done. There are a few significant benefits of using electronic signatures for leases and sub-lease agreements.
1. Saves Time
Using electronic signatures to sign lease agreements online is a timesaver. Everyone can sign the lease online from any location instead of commuting to an office. Using online signature software is quicker than printing a document and passing it around to obtain handwritten signatures.
2. Reduces Costs
Another advantage of creating an electronic signature for lease agreements is that it reduces costs. This is because you won’t have to print and mail paper copies of the document or pay for courier services to deliver them. Overall, leveraging electronic signatures can save you significant money in the lease signing process.
3. Less Paperwork
Using a digital signature means less paperwork to keep track of. You can store all of your legal documents electronically, declutter your office and make it easier to find what you’re looking for.
4. Easy to Customize
With an electronic signature, it’s simple to add clauses or make other changes to your lease agreement before sending it out for tenants to sign electronically. This can save you time and hassle when dealing with any updates or changes.
5. Fill Vacancies Quickly
The sooner you can get your lease agreement signed, the sooner you can start collecting rent from your tenants. An electronic signature gets the job done quickly. You can send out the lease agreement as soon as you have a qualified tenant interested in renting. You don’t have to worry about losing them to another property before you can prepare an agreement to be signed.
6. Simplify the Renewal Process
When it comes time to renew your lease agreement, digital signature software simplifies the process. You can easily send out renewal agreements and have tenants sign them without having to schedule a meeting or wait for them to come by your office.
Is There a Risk to Using Electronic Signature for Landlords?
Landlords increasingly use electronic signatures for documents and contracts, but a potential risk is associated with using eSignatures in the rental business.
The greatest risk regarding eSignature technology is the potential for invalid signatures. The rental agreement or document could be considered null and void if a signature field is invalidated. Any agreement made in the document would no longer be legally binding, and either party could back out without facing penalties. Fortunately, there are ways to ensure legality when creating electronic signatures.
The first way to reduce risk is by using compliant software. Signaturely is compliant with eIDAS, which means the platform is officially recognized as providing valid signatures around the globe. This is based on the software’s compliance with AATL (Adobe Approved Trusted List), which meets the highest standards for validity and trust. By using compliant software, you can be sure that your signatures will be recognized as valid according to landlord-tenant laws.
Do eSignatures Work With Property Management Software?
When managing a property, there are many moving parts to track. From managing leases and rent payments to scheduling maintenance and repairs, there’s a lot to stay on top of. That’s why having reliable property management software is so important. An eSignature tool must work seamlessly with the programs you’re already using—it can be frustrating and time-consuming to constantly switch between different programs or platforms to get things done.
eSignatures are a convenient way to get electronically signed lease agreements without needing paper copies or in-person signatures. But do eSignatures work with property management software? In most cases, the answer is yes. Most e-signing software can integrate with popular property management systems. You can use your existing property management software to send documents to tenants, landlords, and other parties. And once a rental agreement is signed, the eSignature will be automatically recorded in your property management system. This streamlined process can save you time and eliminate the hassle of traditional paper-based contracts.
Are eSignatures Legal for Rental Agreements?
In 2000, the US Congress passed the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN) to promote the use of electronic signatures and records. This act created a clear legal framework for electronic signatures, establishing their validity and enforceability under US law.
While ESIGN applies to a wide range of documents, it’s particularly relevant to landlords, including those who offer month-to-month rental agreements. In general, eSignatures are just as legal and binding as traditional paper signatures. Electronic signatures also hold up in court, as they create an audit trail that clearly shows who signed the document and when using digital stamps. This feature makes them ideal for rental agreements that might include a series of changes.
FAQs About Electronic Signature for Landlords
Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about electronic signatures for landlords.
Can you use DocuSign for lease agreements?
Lease documents are a type of document that can be signed using DocuSign. Both parties must first create accounts with DocuSign. The document must be uploaded, and each party can sign it electronically. DocuSign can speed up the process of signing legal documents compared to more traditional methods.
Can a lease be signed electronically in California?
Leases can be signed electronically in California. Both parties must agree to use electronic records and signatures for an electronic signature to be valid and legally binding.
Where do I get an electronic signature?
There are a few different ways to get an electronic signature. It makes sense to use software such as Signaturely, which allows you to create an electronic signature easily and digitally sign documents.
What You Need to Remember Electronic Signatures for Landlords
In an increasingly fast-paced world, saving time and reducing costs are more important than ever. Landlords who create customized online leases and send lease agreements digitally can achieve both goals. If you’re not already using eSignatures for your property management business, now is the time to make the switch.