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June 4, 2021

RON — did you invest more than you made in revenue?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 10:44 am

The field of RON or Remote Online Notarizations is an unstable one. I have met many Notaries who do it, and a few who even like it. Some get tons of business, others get a job once in a blue moon, and many get nothing.

The costs of being a RON are hundreds and a lot of work. You need to get commissioned, perhaps get an online journal, and software, and approvals from the various platforms or agencies that deal with RON identification and other processes such as Pavaso and about six other popular options.

With Coronavirus abounding, people thought there would be more of a demand for RON. Many state governors made abrupt executive orders allowing it, and there were changes in legislation in various states (I don’t know the details) allowing more online notarizations.

Whether or not RON is secure, or whether you can identify people sufficiently was not much of a concern for the politicians. Their goal was to find yet another way to keep you at home. It’s like Yakov Smirnoff’s comedic commercial for Russian Express Card.

American Express Card — Don’t leave home without it
Russian Express Card — Don’t leave home…. ever…

How much work you get as a RON might depend on whether or not there is a virus. It also depends on how the culture adapts to new technology. People overseas who need an American Notary have to use it. Most of the clients for RON are in Dubai, London, Berlin, Israel, Italy, China, or some foreign place (that often has some sort of really long wall).

Worth it or not?
If you like dealing with all of the computer technology and think it’s cool, in the long run it might work for you if you can figure out how to market yourself. For others who are doing it just for the money, the money is not there yet, so don’t do it unless you can’t live without it.

People on 123notary who list that they are a RON get a lot more clicks. It is impressive and lets the world know you go above and beyond what the average Notary does.

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June 2, 2021

New Notaries vs. Veteran Notaries

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 10:36 am

The behavior of the newer Notaries doesn’t match the older Notaries on 123notary.com.

THE OLD NOTARIES
The old Notaries have been around for ten or twenty years.

Certifications
Many passed our certification test in the old days, but did not bother with the audit retest which consisted of a few Notary questions which are not easy, but you need to know it anyway. Older Notaries tend to be NNA certified which is the easiest of all the tests from prominent agencies, but they rarely pass the LSS, 123notary, or Notary2Pro tests which are hard.

Social Media
The old Notaries used to be very active on forums, linked in, facebook, but not so much on Twitter. But, in the past few years, the older Notaries got tired, died, quit, or stopped being so active on social media.

How They Maintain Their Listing
Additionally, the older Notaries do not do much with their profiles on 123notary. They let the profiles sit and collect cyber dust instead of asking for reviews. 123notary has a lot less online reviews than several years ago because people are not being proactive as much anymore.

THE NEW NOTARIES
The new Notaries are generally in their first or second year of business as a signing agent.

Certifications
Roughly 30-35% of the newer Notaries are LSS certified and close to 90% are NNA certified. A handful are Notary2Pro Certified and we get a trickle passing our 123notary online test as well every month. There seems to be more motivation to prove themselves so that they can make a name for themselves. This was not the case as much with newer Notaries even a few years ago.

Social Media
Newer Notaries seem to not do much on social media. NNA figured out how to get good interaction on their Facebook and a large proportion of the Notaries on there are new ones. The posts that good high quantities of interactions had yes/no answers. So, the quantity of the answers might look good, but the depth of the answers doesn’t compare to the veteran Notary crowd who have volumes to say. Not all oldsters are like this, but the people with long and thorough posts tend to have 15 years or more of experience, sonny.

How They Maintain Their Listing
Unfortunately, I have to get after most people to make their listing complete at least by my standards. A good presentation is life or death, but our Notaries don’t seem to have the motivation to do a quality job of their notes section on their own. This is sad. Even the people paying $400 per year need to be babysat in terms of their notes, reviews, and other aspects of listing maintenance.

SUMMARY
So, things have really changed. My wish is that people will put more effort into their career. I feel happier when people take life more seriously. I am not saying that people are not serious, but they tend to shirk what I consider to be reasonable responsibilities.

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April 8, 2021

Reminders for those of you who are listed on 123notary

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 5:44 am

Dear Notaries,
If you are listed on 123notary, please consider the following. To do well with your listing you need:

1. Login and confirm your listing every 120 days or sooner. We sometimes temporarily remove listings who show signs of being dormant.

2. Respond to emails from 123notary. Sometimes we ask about information that was omitted from your listing. Other times we send quiz emails which are fast and quick so we can assess your skill level. We take that very seriously and hope you do too.

3. Keep your notes section constantly evolving. It is hard for beginners to write a good notes section. But, as you get more experience, little by little you can add to it. Also, please read our content about writing a good notes section. Nobody in the industry has written more on this topic than myself.

4. Consider studying to be certified by 123notary. Many newbies are NNA and LSS certified with a few certified by Notary2Pro. The latter two have good testing standards. However, to do well on 123notary, it pays to be certified by us. So, if you plan on sticking around on our directory, please think about passing our test.

5. You might consider getting a business name. Think it over carefully and read our articles on the topic.

6. Keep refreshed on what is going on on forums, and refresh yourself on your local state notary laws too. Stay informed.

That’s all for today’s reminders. Staying on top of things takes time, but makes you a far superior force to be reckoned with in the market place.

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March 16, 2021

Some people love being a mobile notary, but why?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 4:43 am

Many people got into this profession for the same reason I did many moons back. They love driving, meeting new people, and putting things in FedEx boxes. Yes, there is something very therapeutic about those FedEx boxes — You gotta admit.

Others love the freedom. If you hate being cooped up in some annoying office with phones going off all the time, annoying secretaries, and stale air in those cubicles you are imprisoned in — you might love the open road.

Retired people don’t want to work full-time and like being able to choose their hours and choose their jobs – what did you say sonny?

And then there are the anal folks who like looking at everyone’s ID and wondering which person is a fraud and then thumbprinting them just to be safe. I think I am definitely that type although I love driving too. But, I don’t like driving in Beverly Hills because every other block you have to wait two minutes for the light to turn — how annoying.

And then there are those who love explaining loan documents. Some explain every single document in the package with a canned introduction.

Why did you decide to be a mobile notary and what do you love about it?

A parting thought
Join the Notary Forces — meet new people and notarize them!

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March 3, 2021

From start to finish — how long does a signing take?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 4:26 am

We had a Notary on our blog commentaries that wrote that it takes her four hours from start to finish with a signing. There is the phone call, confirming the signing, driving, signing, driving, dropping the package, invoicing, more invoicing if they don’t pay you, etc. How long does it take the rest of you? Do you track your time?

For me I was able to do 11 signings on my best day in the business. It was back in 2002 I think. I’m not sure of the year. I started at 10am and ended at 3am. That was a long day. 15 hours to do 11 signings. So, if you drive from one job to the next, that averages slightly more than one drive per job. Some of the companies were not happy that I didn’t drop the packages until late at night and missed the deadline.

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February 24, 2021

Older folks love being Notaries

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 4:15 am

If you look at the average age of people who are Notaries on 123notary, they are not spring chickens sonny. No they’re not. They are generally 50-75. Many are retired. Many have health problems including cancer, diabetes, and more. None to my knowledge have died of Covid19, yet the only thing we worry about is Covid19 because we let TV brainwash us.

We give television verbal consent to brainwash us, tell us what to think, tell us what our priorities are, what to worry about, and what to ignore. Television tells us that segregationists are anti-racist, and that those who provided more jobs to black people than ever before in America history ARE racists. TV has really gained “credibility” with me with all of this reliable information, what about you? But, I digress.

Some of our older Notaries are Real Estate brokers, or used to be, were in insurance, mortgage or some other related professions. People love the freedom of the job. I’m sure that elderly people with breathing problems love wearing an N-95 mask which makes it impossible to breathe. But, once again, I digress.

So, let’s look at some reasons why the 60+ segment of society love being notaries so much.

1. Meet new people and ID them
2. Make your own schedule so you don’t have to over do it. You take a day off work if you are having a day when you are fatigued or having a senior moment.
3. You get to drive around and get paid for that! Great if there is good scenery or foliage.
4. Make extra money to supplement social security
5. Not have a boss unless you consider yourself to be your own boss. And some self-employed people are mean bosses to themselves.
6. Talk about the good old days with the borrowers and signing companies.
7. Save up for that RV
8. Some people enjoy documents, FedEx, and the notarization process.
9. Some borrowers have cats, and many elderly people love cats. In fact, many elderly people have a dozen cats at home that like jumping on things.
10. Have something to talk about at the hair salon.
11. It makes them feel 20 years younger.
12. If they live beyond their “expiration date” they feel they won a moral victory.

Please comment if you have any other reasons why seniors would like becoming a Notary.

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November 30, 2020

What do people like about being a mobile notary?

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 5:59 am

There are many reasons why someone would become a mobile notary. There are also other reasons why a person might continue to be a mobile notary. Here are a few.

1. Work your own hours
Are you tired of the 9-5 hussle and hassle? Working your own hours is great. You can also do other gigs between notary jobs, or take other gigs when there normally aren’t any notary jobs. You can also work a part time or full time job and keep doing signings.

2. Drive
Some people were born to be on the road (again). If you love to drive, being a mobile notary will keep you busy. You can work on the road, eat on the road, and just remember not to sleep on the road as that might be dangerous.

3. Meet new people and then notarize them
It is like being in the armed forces. Go to foreign countries, meet new people and then kill them. Instead of killing them, you notarize them — it’s the next best thing — trust me. You will meet people from all walks of life. You will know every end of the spectrum of middle class (boring) as well. Just like a snobby British upper class lady once said, “A marriage made in middle-class — how pedantic.” And then the sarcastic New Yorker said, “She could have done worse.” So take your pick. You can also meet criminals, kidnappers, arsonists, frauds, strippers, porn actresses and more. But, for the most part you will meet very “pedestrian” middle-class Americans who are so boring that you should have a cup of Joe before the signing to ensure you don’t fall asleep. On the other hand if boring is your thing — you will meet the right demographic. On a brighter note, if you live near a fun town like Santa Monica or Hollywood, you might meet more fun people.

4. Deter fraud
It brings meaning to my life to be part of reducing the amount of fraud in this world. Fraud creates uncertainty and suffering and the angels would prefer that we keep our world clean and orderly and that is why I believe they chose me to run this directory as I try to keep things ship shape. Notaries who are thorough make it very hard for frauds to get away with anything. Using that raised seal embosser on every page of every document you notarize, checking ID’s carefully and thumb printing makes it hard to do anything suspicious.

5. Reading our blog
Some Notaries like being a notary just so they have a legitimate excuse to read our zany blog. Yes, the comedy articles on the blog make the whole nightmare of being a mobile notary all worth it in the end. Laugh your way to success.

6. Money
Believe it or not, some people make good money in this profession, or at least used to. And others make a good supplement to their income too. If you are efficient allocating your time, you can make good money at least on an hourly basis. You should see what Carmen rakes in for very quick jobs taking less than an hour from door to door.

7. Retirement
Being a mobile notary is a great way to spend your retirement. It is hard to work full-time as an elderly person, but as a notary you can work as much as you feel up to it.

8. A good job after you have been in Mortgage
If you were in Mortgage for years, being a mobile notary is a natural continuation as your knowledge will carry over to a particular extent as a notary.

9. Stamping
Some people find it theraputic to stamp things, and as a notary, that is what you do every day. It might make you feel official.

10. Reading up on legal aspects
Being a Notary means you have to read up on the legal aspect of being a Notary Public. You need to know all of the identification procedures and all of the various notary acts. There is a lot to know and many people enjoy learning the legal distinctions. And then there are others who are so afraid to commit UPL that they fail to learn Notary law themselves and end up committing crimes out of ignorance on a daily basis. You might like giving Oaths too — I swear! Hmmm.

So that concludes my little article on why you might like being a mobile notary. I hope that you all now see the positives in your career and don’t regret being in this profession.

You might also like:

Certain things you don’t learn from experience
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22572

Is prioritizing a skill a notary should have?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22291

13 ways to get sued as a notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19614

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November 16, 2020

Notary fined $385 for botching a Notarization

Filed under: General Articles — Tags: — admin @ 10:49 am

Originally posted in 2018

Many of the Notaries on our site are so incompetent about communication and Notary practices that I shutter to list them. The fact is that I am not always informed when Notaries get in trouble. I would like to hear more stories of Notaries who goof and get in trouble because I want to learn how to prevent the problems from happening in the future.

The fact is that a Notary in Louisiana (I don’t remember clearly the name of the state but think it is Louisiana) did a Notary job for a loan signing. The Notary was new and had no idea what she was doing. There were numerous mistakes on dates, signatures, notarizations, etc. In fact there were so many mistakes that the Lender make the Notary pay for the redraw of documents. The bill came out to $385. Ouch. What a nasty surprise for this enthusiastic but clueless Notary.

The moral of the story is that you cannot just get a Notary seal and start working without knowing what you are doing. The states don’t prepare you at all for Notary work. Even California gives very little hands on training. NNA certified notaries have been trained in some basic aspects of loan signing, but that course does not teach basic Notary knowledge. So, if you think you “know what you are doing” because you are NNA certified, try taking NNA’s Notary Essentials course first. It is better to know how to be a Notary than a loan signer, because most of the mistakes notaries make are either rudeness, leaving people high and dry, not following directions, or you guessed it — Notary mistakes. Notaries very rarely get in trouble for not knowing their loan documents and rarely get in trouble for dating an RTC wrong although it could happen.

So, become an expert at being a Notary. You can get into trouble with me if you don’t and trouble with the law, lenders and customers as well. Knowledge is power and ignorance comes at a high expense.

.

You might also like:

Notary loses $4000 in legal fees because a fraud added a name to the certificate
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19477

If you’re named as an identity theft conspirator, it could cost you $20,000 in legal fees.
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19481

Do you keep a journal to please your state, a judge, the FBI or 123notary?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19483

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November 5, 2020

Spousal States List

Which states are spousal states for Notary Loan Signing?
Alabama
Alaska
Arkansas
Colorado
Florida
Illinois
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
New Hampshire
New Jersey
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
South Dakota
Tennessee
Vermont
West Virginia
Wyoming

Note
If you are a married homeowner in a Spousal State, your spouse is required to sign certain documents to attest that he or she is aware of the new loan.

Typically, the spouse will need to sign the Deed of Trust, the Right to Cancel, the Truth-In-Lending (TIL), and a few other title and settlement documents.

Your spouse is not financially responsible for the mortgage transaction by signing these documents as long as they are not on the note (the note is the legal-binding document that defines the terms of the loan and who is responsible). They are just acknowledging that a new mortgage is being taken out against the property.

It’s also important to mention that anyone on the deed to your home must also sign the spousal documents, whether you live in a spousal state or not. All owners of the home must acknowledge that you are borrowing against the home.

.

You might also like:

Spousal States List on the Forum
http://www.123notary.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=4329

The 30 point course – a free loan signing course on our blog
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=14233

Signing Agent Best Practices
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4315

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October 12, 2020

Certain things you don’t learn from experience

Filed under: General Articles,Popular on Facebook (some) — admin @ 10:53 pm

Notaries who have a lot of experience seem to forget that you can keep doing the same thing wrong for twenty years and nobody will correct you. People with thirty years of experience often know less than beginners. But, how is this so?

1. Document knowledge
If you want to know more about documents, you can read loan signing courses. You can also read the actual documents. Be aware that many documents have document variations and one document name could have multiple meanings. Therefore you need to be aware of all of the potential meanings and assume the possibility that the document might be completely different from what it normally means as well. Many Notaries go through their careers never reading documents yet claiming “familiarity with the docs.” If you don’t read them then you are only familiar with the names of the documents and not the actual content of the documents.

2. Handling situations
As a signing agent, there are many tricky situations you can get into. Experience might help you to figure out how not to botch certain situations, but might not teach you how to handle less obvious situations. Our course Notary Public 101 goes over twenty common situations where Notaries can get into trouble. No Notary on our site does a thorough job confirming the signing without reading our course. I suggest reading up on handling situations.

3. Notary knowledge
You cannot know the rules of notarizing or know how to explain specific notary acts unless you read about it. You might have performed 50,000 notarizations, but if you performed them wrong, then the experience is worth nothing, or might be counterproductive. Reading up on notary procedure and law might be a good idea. After all, you are handling legal documents.

4. Marketing
Many Notaries go through their career doing the minimum in marketing. You might make a lot more money if you took marketing a lot more seriously. We have many blog articles on the topic.

5. Thinking about danger
What if you are in a house and the borrower goes psycho. That doesn’t happen often. There are techniques for handling danger. Some Notaries sit closest to the door, or at a particular angle from the door so they can see who is coming in. Other Notaries can spot a house with health hazards a mile away and redirect the signing to Starbucks. I’m not sure if there are any good guides to dealing with notary danger, but you can surely try to think of all the possibilities before you go out on a job. Otherwise you have to improvise at the last minute like a comedian doing improv at the Improv!

You might also like:

Real life scenarios at loan signings
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19681

The five year rule of notary experience
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21089

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