Here are a few of my random thoughts in no particular order. Those who’ve entered this business, or who were already engaged during the last 3 years have the advantage of an extremely robust period. This opened the door for NSAs to make contacts within the industry. Over the last 9 months we’ve watched many signing services close up and title companies consolidate. The message that NSAs need to go “title direct” has faltered as NSAs have swamped Title Companies with notaries looking for engagements. Keep in mind that some of the NSA trainers are basing their paradigm on what worked pre-covid, sometimes going back almost 20 years prior. The current slump in Real Estate and a softening economy is making things all the more difficult.
Many of us have focused on General or Specialized Notary work while we wait for Real Estate to pick up. When RE does pickup it’s likely to not be as busy as it was during the late 2019-early to 2023 period. So of our colleagues us have dropped out or are building a second income stream.
General Notary Work is what it sounds like, unfortunately you’ll be competing against UPS, Banks, ect., who offer notary services. Specialty Notary work involves Estate matters, Trusts, Legal engagements, Business contracts, commercial loans (these are handled by commercial lenders and venture capital and not by SS or TCs), and Tax Liens/Loans (not IRS liens). The best I can offer is networking with your local Bar Association, Paralegal Associations, and Realtor working groups. This may mean working the courthouse, passing your business cards to attorneys.
Set up a website that’s SEO optimized so you’ll get noticed on “google”. You will need to engage a web master to develop your site. Be careful, as the market is saturated with “SEO experts” with no proven track record. We can’t be experts at everything, so its sometime best to engage an expert.
You don’t have to limit yourself to "just notary work’, consider other opportunities. Reach out to Auto dealerships to handle their Title filings. You can bet paid to stand in line in counties that haven’t yet entered the digital world. Contact local law firms directly with an eye to taking care of their clients with traveling services (engagement letters, notarizations, document/evidence pickup, etc.). Expand your services to include process service (subpoenas, court orders, summons). I launched a Tax Firm as my new income stream. My tax services focuses on individual, small/micro businesses, and Real Estate investors. I used my NSA experience to launch my RE Tax services. My RE Investors now consult with me when they buy or sell RE investments to look for tax advantages.
Lastly, find a busyness mentor. Some of the best technical experts when it comes to Notarizations may not be well versed in operating a business.