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How I Landed My First Assignments As A Notary Signing Agent

Signing-resized.jpgIn my previous article, “How I Decided To Become A Notary Signing Agent,” I talked about how I was inspired to try Notary work while looking for a change of career. But when I decided to become a Notary Signing Agent, it was completely new business for me. I needed to familiarize myself with the ins and outs of notarizing signatures on loan documents.

I decided the first step in my new career would be to gain some experience working through signing agencies. The pay is less than working directly with title and escrow companies, but I decided it would be better way for a rookie like myself to get those first assignments and learn the basics of a loan document signing before I tried looking for work with local businesses in person.

I signed up with several different free services, with varying degrees of success. While I also received emails from websites offering me signings in exchange for me paying them an upfront fee, I decided a website requiring fees wasn’t the way I wanted to go when marketing myself. Some sites charged large fees if you filed a payment dispute or required me to agree not to file a complaint if I had a credit card issue with the site.  I didn’t feel comfortable with that.

Here are some of the agencies and websites I contacted, and my experiences with them so far:

Snapdocs has been the most successful source of signings for me to date. I’ve completed more than 20 signings after signing up with them, two refinances and 10 HELOCS. The pay is low (average $50 for a HELOC, $75 for a refinance), but the experience has been incredibly valuable.

It took a while to land my first assignment. I responded quickly to texts but was often passed over at first. But I persisted and finally landed a couple of signings. Since then, I’ve become familiar with one agency in particular and I’ve received assignments pretty regularly from them via Snapdocs.

Timios is close to where I live and was recommended by a website I visited, so I went in person to their office to introduce myself and see if they had any opportunities available. I've had one assignment from them so far. 

Bancserv I was pretty excited about. I had seen their booth at the NNA Conference in Las Vegas and they seemed like a good organization to work with. Keep in mind that they only accept applications from new Notaries during the first few days of each month. I passed and was approved and am looking forward to receiving an assignment through them.

I’ve had a few other queries and offers from other organizations. A couple of emails ended up in my spam folder, which I now check regularly so I do not miss any opportunities.

I’m pretty pleased with my progress to date and have now begun reaching out to other local companies to take it to the next level.


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James Gilden became a Notary Signing Agent in July 2018. He is a writer and publishing professional who has written for the New York TimesLos Angeles TimesChicago Tribune and others. He has also worked for SAGE Publishing and The American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is working on a book about World War II centered on the story of his great uncle, a decorated B-17 bomber pilot who was shot down over Nazi occupied France and became a POW.

 

10 Comments

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Chris Parreira

14 Jan 2019

Great job James. I have beebn a nsa part-time for almost 2 years. I am started out just like you did. Its hard getting to work directly with a title company or real estate office. I am on snap docs and with a few other signing services which is enough for me at this time.

Linda Romero

16 Jan 2019

Has anyone noticed that the companies are offering way less money recently than before?

Karen

11 Feb 2019

I am a new NNA signing agent in Washington State and am struggling to get any signing requests. I am listed on SnapDocs and SigningAgent.com. I searched online reviews of several "pay for" signing agencies that email me to sign up and they all have pretty bad reviews. I am not finding any other free signing agencies to sign up with. I called several escrow/title/lending companies to ask for a contract signing agent package and all require 2 years experience and references, or aren't taking any new contracted agents for at least 6 months. I read all NNA articles on starting this new business and apply the advice. I'm beginning to feel I made a mistake investing so much money in this new profession. Any advice getting new assignments is greatly appreciated.

National Notary Association

12 Feb 2019

Hello Karen. One option you may wish to consider is offering to perform general mobile Notary services as well as loan signings, which can help build experience, make potential contacts and supplement your income during slow periods in the mortgage industry. This article from Notary Signing Agent Daniel Lewis offers some suggestions: https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2016/10/finding-general-notary-work If you are looking for other ways to diversify your services, please take a look at our Alternate Income Opportunities articles: https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/alternate-income-opportunities We hope these articles are helpful to you and wish you good luck with your business!

Cristi Wilburn

07 Jun 2019

I just started in February this year. Been a notary longer than that tho. When I did my classes I also signed up for a year on 123notary. I have received several just from that. I am also on Snapdocs. I get some there. One thing I have learned is if that can't find you they can't hire you. 123Notary lets them search my area and my name pops up. Also, just because they offer a certain price does not mean you cannot negotiate. I do it all the time. I factor in my driving and time. I always tell them why I am charging more and most are ok with it.

Mary

13 Feb 2020

I became a Notary Signing Agent in October 2019. I have yet to get an assignment here in the city where I live. Even though I put the areas where I live. Now I respond really fast to the text messages but never get the signings. I have invested a lot of money to become a signing agent. What do they go by when you respond by the text? Do they choose the Agent with the most experience? How do you get experience if you never get the assignment? I will not give up.

National Notary Association

14 Feb 2020

Hello. These articles may provide some helpful information for you: How Long Does It Take To Make Money As A New Notary Signing Agent? https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2014/04/how-long-make-money-notary-signing-agent Effective Business Development For The Notary Signing Agent https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2013/09/business-development-notary-signing-agent

Adriana Avina

31 Mar 2020

I just recently passed the notary exam and finished the certification with NNA....i dont have my commission yet and already received a call for assignment. So sad i could not take it..

B.B.

11 Jun 2020

James, Thank You for sharing your Signing experiences. I'm anxiously awaiting taking my class/test next week- delays from COVID.. Have you experienced signing up with a larger Brokers office to be their "In house Notary" that their Loan Officers would utilize? That was my experience before the bubble blew, when I was a Loan Doc Signing Agent more than 10 years ago. Can't wait for your Book to come out- I'm very interested in those WWII experiences, as my Mom survived those tumultuous times!

Leslie Massey

18 Jun 2020

Thanks for sharing. I don’t know how to get started. I just passed my exam this month

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