How to Impress Signers

I’m new to the notary business. I have had 4 loan closings for my own real estate purchases in my life. I don’t recall the first three, but the last set was in 2021. I do appreciate tabbed documents. It gives me a sense of how much time you need from me. I never required long explanations regarding my documents. I verified the facts and moved forward. I do believe that having documents tabbed shows me that the notary has reviewed the documents and they are ready for my signature.

1 Like

I believe that organization and presentation is very important but I believe what is most impressive is exhibiting competence and confidence in what we are doing. This happens from the onset when you make the initial confirmation / introductory call, that pretty much sets the tone for the scheduled event. I agree that bells and whistles don’t always impress. I have been in this business 20+ years and every experience is a new one, there is always going to be ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ as it tends to come with the territory.

Thanks for the tip. I think tabbing is a very efficient way to move through the documents.

1 Like

Just my 2-cents, for whatever that’s worth.

It’s already enough of a shock to signers when they see you pull out a 150+ page document package for them to sign. At that point, it’s fairly easy to reassure them that it’s “not as bad as it looks”. I can’t imagine how scary it must be if they were to see up to 60 tabs (or more) sticking out for where they are going to have to sign and/or initial.

That being said, I DO tab a couple of documents that will need to be filled out, such as the packages that have the 10-year history form included, and the form for receiving funds via wire transfer if applicable.

Firstly, it gets the most time consuming ones out of the way right off the bat. If it’s a couple that are signing, 99% of the time one of them needs some time to get settled, corral the kids/dogs, etc and the other can fill those out while waiting. Secondly, if they are receiving funds, it seems to get their mindset to thinking about the money they are going to get, and they seem to be more happy about signing all of those papers.

As to your original question, probably the best thing I do to impress the signer(s) is to know the documents well enough to know where to point them to get their questions answered. It’s usually in the fine print in the docs. Being able to point to a sentence or paragraph and asking them if it answers their question seems to impress.

1 Like

When i first start doing closings? Yes, to make sure i didnt miss anything.

Now? At least 3000+ signings under my belt? Too tume consuming. Especially, if i receive the docs am hour or two before the closings. Regardless of the companies, most are the same. I sm often complimented on how fast and thorough i am.

Everybody has their own little things that they do to make signings go fast and easy. I have a bunch of things that I do that seem to “impress” my signers: I use really special pens, signing boards, date blocks, a few tabs when necessary, etc. But, I look at it this way. . . I’ve got to get in and get out. I’m not the signers’ “guest” and I’m not there to make friends. My job is to be professional and anything that serves that objective will be impressive. I always leave my business card (I know many notaries don’t and I cannot understand why) and I say to the signers that if they ever need a notary, I’m their guy. I get my share of GNW from signers that I previously did a real estate deal for.

I will say this: the notary is usually the last person the buyer-seller sees in their transaction. They are already suffering from transaction fatigue and just want it over with. Our job, then, is threefold - authenticate the signer’s identity; be knowledgeable about how to execute (sign) the documents being presented; and, be professional and efficient (whatever that looks like to you). Anything more is kind of useless (I am not looking to make friends or impress anyone) and anything less is unprofessional and, by extension, makes all notaries look bad.

3 Likes

I agree with you on most of your points, Bobby. But I have also been an outside sales rep for 25+ years, and I surely want the signers to think of me as their “friend” before I leave, which is actually really easy to do. That brings in way more GNW for me, and they never balk at the extra cost of me coming to their home for signings that they can get for free at their bank, or for minimal cost at a UPS or other shipping company.

We probably think more along the same lines than not, and I’m not criticizing.

I guess I’m just trying to say that people tend to give their business to “friends”, and it doesn’t hurt to build up a great trust and friendship in that hour of personal time that you have with them.

1 Like

I agree with your sentiments.

1 Like

I write the date on a sticky note. Then I ask each signer to write out the date below mine, making it a little “game” of who can write the date the best. You might be surprised at how competitive signers can be, especially couples! And they continue that accuracy throughout the signing, often jokingly criticizing each other when they don’t write out a “perfect date”.

I put the sticky note on the table in the middle of us and tell them “It’s more of a reminder for me than for you”, but of course they always look at it for reference, like your index card idea.