Selling Guide

Published June 3, 2020

The Selling Guide is organized into parts that reflect how lenders generally categorize various aspects of their business relationship with Fannie Mae. To begin browsing, select from any of the sections below. You may also download the entire Selling Guide in PDF format.

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B8-2-03, Signature Requirements for Security Instruments (10/22/2013)


This topic contains information on:


Borrowers’ Signatures on Security Instruments

The following person(s) must sign the security instrument:

  • Each person who has an ownership interest in the security property, even if the person’s income is not used in qualifying for the mortgage.

  • The spouse or domestic partner of any person who has an interest in the property, if his or her signature is necessary under applicable state law to waive any property right he or she has by virtue of being the owner’s spouse or domestic partner.


Signature Requirements: Powers of Attorney and Guardianship

The following persons may sign security instruments on a borrower’s behalf:

  • An attorney-in-fact may sign the security instrument, as long as the lender obtains a copy of the applicable power of attorney. In jurisdictions where a power of attorney used for a signature on a security instrument must be recorded with the security instrument, the lender must ensure that recordation has been effected. See B8-5-05, Requirements for Use of a Power of Attorney, for further requirements governing the use of a power of attorney.

  • A court-appointed guardian may sign the security instrument if the borrower is not legally competent, provided that he or she has unlimited power over the ward’s affairs, including the power to hold, convey, and give a lien against real property owned by the ward, to make payments from the ward’s assets, and to permit inquiries concerning the ward’s credit. The lender should obtain a copy of the documents making the appointment. If the guardian in some other capacity is a party to the loan or sale transaction—for example, the seller of the property—the lender should ascertain that there are no material conflicts of interest.

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