Hi Everyone. Hope it’s not too late to say Happy 2023! I officially launched my notary business in the fall of last year and many of you were very generous in helping to answer my newbie questions. I only had one loan signing at the end of last year although I signed up with several signing services. Needless to say, I made no money.
Well, I have been hitting the pavement and making phone calls to aggressively promote my services by visiting dealerships, hospitals, nursing homes and assisted living facilities only to be told the same thing and that is “we already have several notaries in house”. One hospital administer told me they now have a notary on each floor because during the initial outbreak of Covid-19, select people were required to become commissioned notaries since visitors were not allowed inside the hospitals. Has anyone else experienced this? Some Dealerships told me that they have their own notaries or their loan documents are signed electronically now.
To diversify my services I have also signed up with several Field Inspections companies, and just recently receive a few emails with inspection request, but they located are in other states.
Signing services are still low balling and it’s impossible to get a signing because requests come in already unavailable. This is my full time business, and I have only had two GNW signings this year. I am at a total loss as what to do. Am I alone in this? Would appreciate any comments or suggestions.
Sadly, no you are not alone. I seriously doubt if anyone, regardless of experience, is still making a liveable income in this field. I’ve been doing this for 30 years and last year watched my income decline month after month…ending up with the worst year EVER.
And am already aware that 2023 is going to be worse than that. January business consisted of ONE signing. ONE! Granted, I am in a low population/volume area, but I strongly suspect there isn’t a single notary anywhere who is still making a liveable fulltime income. If you are out there and still making a fulltime liveable income doing loan signings, PLEASE CHIME IN NOW!
Also, I do understand your frustration with ‘in-house notaries’ (every bank in my area has numerous notaries and FREE notarization for customers). I have pretty much cornered what little market there is in hospitals, nursing homes, etc., but it’s just pocket $.
Add in the big tech push for RON (which will go to the cheapest notary co.) and you will realize we’re almost obsolete. Do yourself a favor and look for a real job.
I’m baffled that people (in general, not specifically this poster) are becoming new notaries right now. They are either completely gullible or not capable of doing research. I hope they have a backup plan, cause they are going to need it…fast.
Ditto on Arichter’s comments. We are in for a rough ride for a long time. Find a real job and keep this if you have the time to do on the side. I worked almost full time for about 7 years at signings. My phone rang constantly. Now practically nothing. Most anyone who has needed to refi did so when rates were much lower and are now in a 30yr fixed rate 3-3.5% loan. So no more refi’s. There is a little bit of general notary work occasionally but it is a very small amount. Make a new plan…
I tried to find “real” work after I lost my job during the pandemic and after umpteen interviews realized that ageism had become a barrier to my reemployment. I knew I had to create my own job and after meeting with several career counselors and reassessing my transferable skills, I was introduced to loan signing work, because I was already a commissioned notary. During this time, the market was great, interest rates were low, and housing sales and loan signings were plentiful. Halfway though the process of setting up my business (LLC), getting NSA certification, EIN#, etc. and dealing with the equipment supply chain back up, interest rate started to soar and by the time I launched my business last year, it was 7% and rising.
Quitting is not an option for me. I am a believer and my faith in God and armed with testimonies of many past hardships I have overcome, this too will pass, this mountain will be moved, and I will succeed in this momentary work desert, and my business will be successful!
It took me about a year and a half to build up my General Notary Work business via my Google My Business Page. The majority of my business comes from people doing a Google Search, for Apostille Near Me or Jail Signing Near Me or Health Care Directive Notary Near Me or Live Scan Near Me or Trust Signing Near Me.
You get it. I had to diversify my business and build up several reviews which gives potential customers the warms and fuzzies about your business acumen. Focus on your Google My Business page and start getting those reviews and business will follow. Don’t give up.
Look here Info15, You need to be careful who you allow speak into your life and the life of your business. I’ve noticed that quite a few people on this forum say about the same exact thing. That is not everyone. I am not what they call a “covid notary”. I’ve been in the notary business for a few years now but not as much as some and I have to say that everyone’s experience is different because that is not my case. I’m making a decent living as a notary (and I’m not counting the other services I provide). It’s about relationships. People work with people they know, like, and trust, so if you hear about other notaries not doing well that saids more about them then the industry. You have to put things into perspective. Now I’m not saying that the industry is not slow, it is but people are still closing deals it’s not dead. I understand that this comment may upset some folks but I respectfully don’t care. If you reply with negativity just know that I don’t reply to crap comments. That is all I wanted to say. Have great day!
I am seeing a small increase in prop. sales and refi and still provide GNW. This is NOT my full time job and just part time income. When work was in abundance, I did turn away work because this was my choice ~ those working full time at this profession needed the work. Hospitals and full care facilities in my area do NOT have notaries on staff as I read in previous post. Guess location is key.
My last quarter was the least that I have earned since I first started as a CNSA nine years ago. January was abysmal, but there were lots of other issues that got in the way of my doing consistent work other than a downturn in the industry. February is getting off to a better start, but I will be unavailable most of the month, so I won’t know how I’m financially affected until about April. But like @alice2uworld, I do this part-time as a retiree so I don’t quite feel the pinch that some others may who are looking to this as fulltime income. Agencies don’t call any more, so I don’t get the personal contact that I was accustomed to. I really miss hearing the ping on my text or phone every 15-30 minutes letting me know that I am wanted/needed. Hate the feel of the cattle call with the impersonal texts offering $35-$75, which have slowed down considerably since summer. However, I consider myself lucky. The few agencies who still rely on me and that I have a relationship with do so at my requested rate. GNW is pretty reliable as I do a few of those a week, but they are not serious money makers. But then, I’m not knocking on any doors trying to make myself available. Hope things pick up for everyone going forward. Good luck.
In 2021 my total earnings (part time) 1099 were $52,000. My 2022 total $1,300. I have done at least 5k closings. The best thing that came from Covid was the interest rates. Don’t think they will ever go that low again. I tell all new notaries 1 year or less, this is not a good time to put all of your eggs in a basket for becoming a signing agent. I use to receive 10 or more texts a day (declining many). Now? I am lucky to receive 10 a month
My Google Business Page is a work in progress, and I am researching how to optimize it to get more results. Yes, diversifying is absolutely necessary, and I will be taking an Apostille class soon. Also researching how to get started with fingerprinting in addition to offering non-notary services such as writing, editing and research as I also have a journalism background among others.
Stick with what you doing, this is the time to perfect your signing skills. You don’t need the LLC (save you r $) been a notary for over 20+ years still sole prop. And I’m busy, What I did this weeks in loan signing: 5 Monday, 4 Tues, 3 today, I even did 3 last Sat and 1 on Sunday as well. That how it goes every week.
I do this full time and live in Orange County, Ca. The slow time is also time to sign up more clients. Use 123notary.com and get a list of all the signing & title company and just sign up on their website & email them your resume. This is what I did and make over 6 figure every year. Build it, and the orders will come.
There is always General Notary Work. I was off during January due to surgery and had plenty of calls where I couldn’t accept the work. Unfortunately, many LSAs won’t do GNW and I have no idea why. One big must when doing GNW is you really need to be available 7 days per week, and while you don’t need to be 24/7, you do need to keep substantial hours.
Today was my first day back to work since 2022 and I had 3 signings from companies where I already established the relationship. The normalization of the market seemed to be a deal breaker and a lot of LSAs in my area have left the business. The years 2020-2022 were not normal years and many who were enticed by the 6-figure income courses received a big slap in the face. Those left in my area are retirees who don’t need to make a lot of money, those who are the 2nd incomes in their household and those that have a W2 job and just take assignments on the weekends and evenings.
I would recommend sitting down with a SCORE mentor, probably from the banking industry who understands the ebbs and flows in this industry, and making a detailed business plan where you can evaluate how much you need to make per month, how much to set aside for taxes, planning for retirement, saving for a rainy day when you need a month off for surgery, health insurance, office/other expenses, etc.
Signingorder.com was one that I used and got a good bit of work from when I first started. I paid the fee to upgrade and they are new Notary friendly…at least a year ago they were. I made my money back ten times over the first month and have established myself as the preferred Notary for a few companies over the past year. Give them a try
You are not alone…COVID has made alot of changes on how peoole now has structured things and unfortunately it screwed us but i believe when interest rates go back down, those who bought a home with a high interest rate will refinance…it may take a couple of years who knows at this point. I do this part time since i have a full time job. Dont give up yet, refinancing will be coming soon. Atleat try to make your money back. Wish you the best!