Did not take signing under $120 for 6 months

I made a ton of money in 2020. I did several Refi signings for $300 & $375. I had my prices set: Seller = $110; Refi = $120-$130; Purchase w loan; $150; Reverse Application = $150; Rev Signing = $180; Single Doc = $75;
Cash Buyer = $120…etc.

Well…
I did about 1/4 the business. I am Retired series 6, 7, 63, etc… Executive Banker, with Extensive Lending, Legal, Accounting, and Financing background. I am lucky that this income is just my spending money…

Last 2 months – I think I signed 3 packages…

Last week, I started to accept the $75 offers.
What are you going to do??? My husband is not willing to give me any more spending money… And I am too young to take distributions from my IRAs and Annuities – without having to pay the 10% penalty. I don’t want to go back to a 9-5 job. So, now I take the $75 offers. For any and All.
At least, I can go out to lunch w my friends.

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I don’t see how your making any money taking $75 offers. The price of toner, paper and gas alone is well over $200 a month.

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How nice of you to do charity work in your otherwise leisure time.

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Wow $75 is kinda tough to swallow but I would say if it’s just spending money and it gets you out of the house I’m in no position to judge your choice.

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I will say this though… for me I focus on a weekly average. On occasion I have accepted a $75 order be as it was what I needed to meet my weekly income goal. I have a minimum feee that I will accept with a $10 buffer built in. (May have to increase it now due to gas prices). I base my fees based on my personal financial needs and goals. My minimum is $90 but I I’m getting orders that range from $100-$200) Yes there are still title companies that pay $200 to close a loan and @VIPnotaryCO will confirm this to be true. My hard costs are low and my travel time is often less than 30 miles (total). Just make sure at the end of the day you are not operating in the negative as you would not be doing yourself any justice.

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@docusignexpert1 You owe it to yourself to run through the numbers one more time . . .

This choice is probably COSTING you money.

:swan:

======

Here is an excellent specific cost breakdown by one business owner for services within her [ @anon78047977 ] region & for her overhead (see excerpt below):

"Ok for a seasoned already in business Signing Agent (meaning no start up costs to factor in, just on going costs)

Average Refinance

  • 150 pages (300 when having to print 2 copies)
  • 35 miles average miles to signing/from signing/to FedEx drop
  • Print cost average .15 per page (Laser printer, standard paper. Note this is also the cost at Staples, FedEx Office in the area BUT I have actually calculated my real costs by dividing the number of pages I get from a toner kit, my drum kit, cost of paper etc. but I use this average of .15 because there are Notaries around who actually use outside printing)
  • IRS mileage .56 per mile (you can use actual costs of gas, insurance, plus maintenance costs. I will use the IRS rate because it’s a good average and I also have Tolls I have to pay which I will not add in this example. Also later I kind of use this amount as a “catch all” for other expenses. Again, I have determined my “actual” costs and the averages I use are pretty spot on.)
  • 2.25 hours an average total time spent which includes, confirming appt & reviewing instructions, printing/prepping docs, travel time to/from/to FedEx, signing/notarizing docs, scan back
  • Costs that people usually do not take into consideration because it’s part of their household BUT they are costs of running a business (home office expenses - internet, electric, computer, phone, supplies, etc.) Remember every business has similar expenses

So here we go…let’s look at average total for this signing:
$45 print costs
$19.60 mileage rate (So this number is based on IRS mileage rate. I use this number as a catch all to give me an estimate of my actual costs (gas, toll, %of annual maintenance, %of insurance and a % of home office costs, %of supplies, etc. Since I know my % for every business expenses, I already know this number is pretty close to my actual costs. For example my actual costs for this signing would be around $21)

It will cost me $64.60 for a 150 page refinance order. With no issues, no traffic, no reprints, no problems

If I took a $75 signing fee I would net $10.40
I would net roughly $4.62 per hour for a signing that took up 2.25 hours of my time.

$95 I would net $30.40 or $13.51 per hour
$125 I would net $60.40 or $26.84 per hour
$150 I would net $85.40 or $37.96 per hour

So when I advocate for SAs and fees I am not just coming up with number off the top of my head. I have done the math for myself personally."

SOURCE: Signing Agent Fee is Just Not a Notary Fee - #38 by notarybe

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I used the calculation that you provided when I first started when I had trouble calculating my minimum. This was incredibly helpful. Because of this I calculated at the time my biggest expense (printing) and was able to lower my printing cost to now on average $10 per refinancing package. This was achieved by buying my printing supplies and paper on sale and using my rewards from staples for toner etc.

Thank you again for sharing this.

Based on your numbers and my minium rate I do not make less than $28/hr

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And this does not take into account Federal Taxes, State Taxes and SE Taxes - this is a bare-bones example.

Also, cNsa5 this is an older post right? IRS mileage rate for 2022 is 58.5 cents/mile.

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@LindaH-FL Yes, Linda. It’s from a post by notarybe in August of 2021.

FYI: As noted above, the post & the calculations are by notarybe. Also, the source thread was posted above as well for direct reference.

:swan:

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Yes, that breakdown helped me out as well when I first started. I also had a mentor help me with my gnw cost and found out I was undercharging there as well. I learned to make every job pay for itself and pay me.

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For example, I just accepted an order and it was assigned for $80.00 It is a 17-page document and I am only traveling 9 miles (total) with scan backs. Yes it is under my minimum but the numbers still work for me ( prep, print, travel, sign, print and Scan back time est 45 min tops total.) You just have to know your numbers…

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It’s nice you had a mentor… when I first started I reached out to a few of the Notaries in my area and not one of them bothered to return my call. I then came across this platform by accident and since then the vets on this site has kept my toes pointed in the right direction.

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You do not take in consideration how your decision affect the others Notaries, that maybe are in the same situation as you. How can you agree those low offers with your financial background? Is the basic Finance 101.

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If she doesn’t take it somebody else will. The market is what it is

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Same! I had to find someone not in my area. SMH, I’m always willing to help people but I found out real quick not everyone else is so nice:)
This platform has been a gold mine for information! I’m grateful

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I believe you!!!:+1::+1::+1::+1::clap::clap::clap::clap::clap::clap:

With your professional background you should not have any problem getting business at all:)

This is why we have so many issues with being paid properly.

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It’s not even charity work, it’s just plain dumb.

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With the slowdown in volume recently it has become more of a challenge to get decent fees for signings. However, I’ve chosen to stick to my fees. I refuse to take the same $75 offers that I started with in this business 8 years ago. It’s kind of amazing that the price of EVERYTHING has gone up but our fees are stuck in the mud. I will take $75 for a one document signing, but not for anything else. The way I look at it, anytime I have to get in my car and drive someplace for a signing, it’s taking away a certain block of time that will be unavailable for other assignments. You have to decide how much your time is worth to you.

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