My opinion on this matter is that there is a lot more notary work than there used to be. The crazy ups and downs in the economy, people losing their jobs due to covid related causes and getting new jobs. People escaping from certain areas and moving to other areas. All of this transitioning necessitates a lot more Notary work and Notaries. And yes, there are more Notaries out there than before. When people lose their job, the first thing that goes through their head is whether or not to become a Notary — or so it seems.
However, for the last eight or so years, new notaries and old alike lack the willingness to master their trade and become experts. Many take classes and pass tests. But, when I test them on actual notary or situational knowledge, few can get more than 80%.
So having lots of poor quality notaries who can’t even administer an Oath properly is not overcrowded. The quantity of what I consider to be qualified Notaries is as sparse as the population in Northern Alaska in between sled dog races. Actually, I think those races are in central Alaska along the biggest river when it freezes over. And the Northern lights are good in both places. But, I digress. What was I writing about again? Ah yes — Notaries.
POINTS IN THE NNA ARTICLE DISCUSSED
The author of the NNA article says that many Notaries claim that there is not enough work to go around. Qualified Notaries are not making this claim. They claim that there is not enough work that pays what they want to go around. Notaries with no name recognition, no skills to speak of and no experience would not get much work even if there were enough work to go around. I understand the author’s point, but when you look at the situation a little below the surface it looks very different.
The author states that RON or Remote Online Notary work creates new opportunities. This is a very true point. However, RON work is feast or famine. The 80:20 rule of Real Estate where 20% of the agents get 80% of the work applies to RON, if you change it to the 99:1 rule. It seems that the applications and sites catering to RON work favor the very solid Notaries who have seniority and know what they are doing. A handful of Notaries are cleaning up where the majority are lucky to get even one job. So, understanding RON from a business perspective is complicated and it does not provide work for the masses.
The author recommends: use the support of your fellow Notaries. Yes, this is a great idea. However, any successful notary who teams up with others will be very picky who they choose or their reputation will go down the drain. If a new Notary thinks they can partner up with an experienced Notary with a good customer base, this is very unlikely unless you developed a stellar reputation or are very socially close to the experienced Notary. But, in the long run, networking is a good idea. I did it for years, and many Notaries on 123notary do it too. Networking — it’s a good idea, but there are catches and many considerations.
The author recommends: Network with local businesses that need notary services. Once again, another good idea. But, this is an idea you should be using anyway regardless of how the notary market is doing. Call up local businesses. Or drop by and give them your card. A certain percentage will use you, so go to lots, and have lots of cards.
Then the author recommends: Find opportunities outside of your local area. This is what I recommend too. It is called widening your net. You should do that in any case whether business is fast or slow if the price is right or if it is for a client you like enough to drive. This point is a good one, but has nothing to do with overcrowding.
I feel this particular NNA article is helpful, but is a general marketing article with a title that is specific to a particular type of market condition that the article does not address. The fact is that for years, the NNA has been outstanding at marketing to new Notaries, getting them on board and turning them into signing agents. Many of these Notaries are Realtors, Insurance workers, Mortgage and Escrow people, etc. NNA tends to attract a good crowd and a big crowd and floods the industry with signing agents. However, how many of these signing agents can pass a tough notary or signing agent exam? The answer is very few. And the reason is that people since about 2013 (yes I noticed this), have become lazy and don’t want to study hard. Even people with four different certifications don’t like to study hard. This is hard to believe but it is my experience.
Here is the original article