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The 5 most common Notary Signing Agent assignments

Updated 2-26-24. Many new Notary Signing Agents believe that all loan signing assignments are the same. In fact, NSAs can be asked to handle many different types of assignments. As an owner of nationwide signing service, I see 5 types of mortgage packages most often.

These are:

  • Mortgage refinances
  • Purchase loans
  • Seller packages
  • HELOCs (Home equity conversion lines of credit)
  • Reverse mortgages

Knowing what to expect when you get a loan signing assignment and being familiar with various loan documents will allow you to be more prepared to do the perfect signing. Here’s what you need to know about each type of loan signing.

1. Refinance

This is probably the most common loan signing you will encounter. A refinance is when a borrower pays off their current loan with a new loan. A homeowner refinances their home either to achieve a lower interest rate and/or take cash out based on the equity they currently have in the home.

These are very straightforward loans. The borrower is agreeing to pay back the loan at an agreed upon interest rate for an agreed upon duration.

2. Purchase

This is the second most common loan signing you will encounter. This is a transaction when a home buyer borrows money from a bank to purchase a home.

If you can execute a refinance, you can execute a purchase. The loan documents are essentially the same. Because whether someone is borrowing money to pay off an old loan or borrowing money to purchase a house, they are still borrowing money.

3. Seller package

This occurs when a homeowner sells their home. When a seller sells their home, there is paperwork that needs to be signed and usually one or two documents that will need to be notarized.

These signing are usually around 20-30 pages and pay less than a traditional refinance or purchase signing, but they usually take half the time.


HELOC is an acronym for Home Equity Line of Credit.  This a line of credit tied to the equity of a borrower's home. For instance, if the borrower's home is worth $500,000 and their current mortgage is only $200,000 that means the homeowner has $300,000 in equity. In this example, a homeowner could ask a lender to give them a line of credit against their home for $100,000 of the $300,000 of equity that they have. This gives the homeowner access to money for a rainy day, home renovations, etc.

These loans typically have variable interest rates (vs fixed) and are very popular during hot housing markets where the value homes are increasing.

5. Reverse mortgage

Reverse mortgages are loans where a homeowner, 62 years or older, converts their home equity into cash income with no mortgage payments.

Reverse mortgage loan documents can usually be over 200 pages because they typically have two deeds and two notes.

These types of signing assignments can take an hour and a half or longer because of the number of documents. In addition, clients are older, so patience is key.

Pro-Tip: Learn and understand these documents before you accept an assignment

Before you accept any of these loan signing assignments, it’s important that you are familiar with the documents.

Purchase and refinance transactions will make up about 80% of the signing appointments you will see, but if you are not ready or prepared for the other 20% of signing opportunities, you are not maximizing your income.

Additionally, if you make a mistake on a HELOC, seller package, or reverse mortgage because you are not familiar with those types of packages, you may not get business again from that source again. This can be a costly mistake because it would jeopardize your ability to get refinance and purchase transactions from your client.

To get familiar with refinance documents, ask a family member or friend who has refinanced recently to take a look at their documents. If that’s not possible, you can sometimes find sample documents online. Or you can take a course like Loan Signing System that has sample documents for you to learn from.

Mark Wills of Loan Signing System is a Notary educator, a mentor to more than 10,000 Notary Signing Agents and a Forbes Real Estate Council Member. For more information on how to market your loan Signing Agent business, please go to

Loansigning ad

Related Articles:

How to prepare for your first loan signing

How to make more than $50 per loan signing

Additional Resources:

Notary Signing Agent resources

NNA YouTube channel


Add your comment

Leah Boehm

19 Apr 2021

I am a newbie Notary Public in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Am I permitted to notarize any type of documents related to loans or mortgages, or is that strictly for NSAs to handle?

National Notary Association

19 May 2021

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone so they can provide you with additional assistance. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.


25 Apr 2021

Great information

Pilar Williams

28 Mar 2022

He forgot to mention Debt Consolidations. Those packages may be small but it takes time because you have to narrate a script to the signer per the vendors instructions.


10 Dec 2022

When you noterize the HELOC, is the passport number is necessary to be on the document?

National Notary Association

11 Jan 2023

No, you do not write a passport or other identification number on a loan document.

Maritza Roberts

21 Mar 2023

Yes you do. On the Patriot ACT form

Federico B Saiki

11 Mar 2024

Many times we are contacted to de a HELOC, which usually is a small pkg. But in fact it is a Cashout Refi, which has a regular refinance loan pkg with 100+ pages.

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