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Realforms New Zealand makes global real estate history

In a world first, New Zealand is leading the way as the first house sale and purchase agreement is finalised without ever touching pen to paper.

“This is groundbreaking - everyone in New Zealand should be proud of what has been achieved,” Realforms CEO Jordan McCown said today.

“This is the future of the way business will be done in real estate, and indeed in lots of other contractual areas, and it’s great to be a leader and partner in it.”

The sale and purchase agreement was drafted, e-signed, negotiated, edited, accepted and finalised for a residential property in Christchurch, New Zealand, without touching a single piece of paper or a pen.

“Realforms was thrilled this world first occurred in New Zealand. Initially, we were going to launch in Australia, but, their e-signature legislation was archaic in comparison to the more modern legislation in New Zealand,” Mr McCown said.

“Plus, Sale and Purchase Agreement for Real Estate (S&P) legislation varies between states and territories in Australia and e-witnessing is not allowed in most Australian states and territories. Our digital S&P can be used from Cape Reinga to Bluff and e-witnessing is legal in New Zealand. New Zealanders and their government should be proud of this milestone.”

“Realforms is the new “apple” for the real estate industry.” One Agency Morris Properties Owner Michael Morris said.

Before Realforms, real estate sales agents had limited tools to complete sale and purchase agreements. Agreements are negotiated, which involves crossing out the property price and getting all parties to initial. In addition, the vendor’s and purchaser’s conveyancers usually request changes. These changes involve editing and adding bespoke clauses to the agreement. Before Realforms this required parties to handwrite these changes and then get all parties to initial. The process required agents driving around town collecting initials, lots of printing, scanning and faxing, over and over again.

Two days ago, Michael Morris, the owner of One Agency Morris Properties, sold a property in Christchurch using the Realforms platform and its digital Sale and Purchase Agreement for Real Estate (S&P). The sale involved four vendors and one purchaser. The conveyancer for the purchaser and vendors were based in Christchurch.

Michael Morris (the sales agent), started the process by drafting the digital S&P through the Realforms web application, entered the purchasers’ details, linked their email address to their e-signatures, then through the application, emailed the digital S&P.

The purchasers digitally accepted each section of the S&P (this usually requires printing and initialing each page), were prompted to download a government guide and e-signed (usually requires printing, ink, and scanning) and submitted the agreement.

The S&P was sent to the vendor’s conveyancer who then requested three amendments on three separate occasions. Michael, on each occasion, simply made these amendments in the Realforms web application to the S&P and resent the agreement to all parties who digitally accepted the changes.

Realforms provides digital change highlighting and acceptance. This replaces the cumbersome process of handwritten changes, initialing, printing, and scanning.

The four vendors, two of whom were solicitors, then electronically signed and submitted the digital S&P. Michael then dated the agreement and clicked finalise, at which time the Realforms web app locked the document from any further online changes and attached an audit trail of who did what and when. Michael commented that the dollar value of the time and petrol he saved to complete one S&P through Realforms was between $650 and $1,000.

At 15.59 on Wednesday the 19th of September, 2018, Michael Morris, completed the world's first sale and purchase agreement, drafted, e-signed, negotiated, edited, accepted and finalised, for a residential property in Christchurch, NZ, without touching a single piece of paper or a pen.

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