Sqaak, LLC Launches New Online Earnest Money Deposit Transfer Service
Helping real estate professionals and buyers complete the digital contract/digital signature/digital funding process without having to deal with paper checks
By: Sqaak, LLC
Earnest money is the portion of a deposit that goes along with the purchase agreement. It is often known as the "Good Faith Deposit" and has been an essential element of real estate contracts since the 1700s. Currently, most buyers looking to make a purchase write a paper bank check and deliver it to their real estate agent manually. In an environment where contracts are now generated electronically, sent by email and signed with digital signatures the bank check has become a burdensome part of the home purchase process.
In making the announcement company president and REALTOR(R) Chris Beadling said, "Real estate agents have recognized for a while now the efficiencies that come from new technology tools has actually made collecting earnest money more difficult. Sqaak leverages the flexibility of online banking to make the process better for everyone."
In the system released today, buyers go to the Sqaak site (either by entering the URL or based on an invitation from their real estate agent) and confirm details of the home being purchased. A portal then opens for them to log into their online banking site where they pick the account they wish to fund their transfer and confirm the transfer amount. At no time does Sqaak have access to their bank account number, nor do the online banking credentials save to the Sqaak servers.
When real estate brokers or escrow agents are ready to capture those funds for delivery to an escrow account, the buyer is alerted by text message and email and must confirm the transfer before any funds are released. This two-step confirmation process allows buyers to bid on multiple properties using the same earnest money funds and also provides a way for them to return the funds to their account at any point before they are released.
Sqaak buyers have access to the service for free based on the participation of vendors in the Sqaak Home Marketplace, which allows them to meet trained partners in fields related to the home purchase. Existing vendors include mortgage loan originators, home inspectors and insurance firms. Should buyers wish to avoid interaction with Marketplace vendors they can also pay a retail fee for their funds transfer.
"We really believe we have created a new paradigm for how this small piece of the real estate buying process can work," Beadling said. The second confirmation creates comfort for people transferring money in and the free broker capture allows those in charge to have a much better understanding of where funds are at all times. When combined with digital contracts and digital signatures, the Sqaak process makes home buying easier for everyone."
For additional information on the Sqaak service, visit www.Sqaak.com