Operational Best Practices/Safe Closing Protocols

Below are operational procedures title and settlement companies have implemented. What precautions has your company developed to help keep your staff and clients safe? Please share them with us at tlta@tlta.com.

  • Arriving to a Closing: Guests are encouraged to use hand sanitizer and/or wash hands upon arrival.
  • Stagger/Split Closings: Stagger closings (30 minutes) to minimize the number of customers in waiting rooms. Split buyer and seller closings.
  • Reduce Those at Closing: Allow only signers to the transaction in the office. Ask agents and lenders to attend by conference call. Family and friends should be asked to respect the need for social distancing. 
  • Reduce Time Needed in Office: Use electronic and other means (mobile notary, eclosing platforms, Facetime, Skype, etc.) to perform as many functions as possible. Send papers in advance for review. Consider providing drive-thru services for anyone who has a small package to sign. 
  • Symptomatic Clients: Any guest who exhibits symptoms that may be like coronavirus (fever, cough, shortness of breath, etc.) must notify staff upon arrival so they can be escorted out of common areas into a private closing room.
  • Post-Closing Disinfecting: After each closing, the chairs, table and door handle will be wiped down with disinfecting wipes or bleach solution.
  • Closing Table Items: Remove pens, paper, extra reading glasses and other items normally found on the closing tables. Distribute new pens to each closing participant and don’t reuse them.
  • Lobby Items: Remove all reading materials, ceramic mugs and other re-usable items.
  • Children’s Play Areas: Remove children’s play areas and place in storage.
  • Hand Sanitizer: Provide hand sanitizer in closing spaces. If none is available, encourage employees and visitors to wash their hands before and after any closing or other meeting.
  • General Environmental Cleaning: Cleaning personnel should use appropriate germ-killing solutions when cleaning office areas after-hours.
  • Social Distancing: When possible, stay approximately six feet from others.
  • Workforce Dispersion: If needed, invest in technology solutions that allow employees to work from remote locations, assuring production and service continuity.
  • Developing Travel Protocols: Issue guidelines for notifying management if employees have traveled recently or have travel planned in the coming weeks. Ask those employees who have or will travel to self-quarantine for two weeks following their return.
  • Insurance Considerations: Having adequate insurance is an essential best practice. Be sure your policies are up to date and timely renewed. Renew sooner rather than later to ensure your needs are met.