7 Habits for Notaries to Help Fight the COVID-19 Blues

Whether we are sheltering in place or continuing to work in our notary signing agent businesses, we must find ways to stay positive and ready to identify opportunities when they emerge.   Having a negative outlook helps nothing.  Today, I’d like to share habits that I have learned from observing smart people who get things done and keep going toward their goals in life no matter what is happening around them. Habit #1  - Limit Negative Intake - Ramp Up the Positive Allow yourself no more than two articles on COVID-19 issues per day.   My personal habit is to look to see how many cases are being reported each day.  However, it is not necessary for me to read every single COVID-19 story that...


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The Remote Online Notary Roller Coaster

Have you noticed how remote online notarization (RON) has had many crazy ups and downs?  We had a few hot minutes of activity in March and April, yet today, a number of notaries complain of having no assignments come their way after investing to become an online notary.  Let's Think Back a Minute. Until the COVID-19 pandemic affected face-to-face loan signings, there was little or no interest from hiring parties in contracting with independent notaries to perform loan signings using RON technology.  In March, however, and throughout April, as the pandemic aged, hiring parties began reaching out to notaries regarding their RON skills and platforms. Dozens of notaries took that as a sign to suit up for the RON game by sinking...


Iowa Remote Online Notarization

Iowa has accelerated their Remote Online Notarization (RON) to accommodate for the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  Iowa notaries can now register here to be able to offer this service: https://sos.iowa.gov/covid19/remotenotarization/form.aspx  The following vendors have been authorized to provide this service: DocVerify LenderClose SIGNiX You must reach out to one of these vendors prior to applying. DocVerify: $100 setup fee, $480 annual fee, $100 digital certificate fee, and a per transaction fee LenderClose: No published fees. SIGNiX: No setup fee, $250 annual fee, free digital certificate, $10 transaction fee, $5 for each additional seal (same transaction, $60 max) Here is the text of the guidance provided by the Iowa Secretary of State's Office: In-Person Notarization Requirement Waiver Guidance Beginning March 22nd, Governor Reynolds declared that the in-person requirement for notarizing documents in...


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Colorado Remote Online Notarization

Update 4/1/2020: The Colorado SOS office confirmed that there has been no change to the amount Colorado notaries can charge for a remote online notarization.  This makes RON cost-prohibitive in most instances.  We will update as we get more information. Colorado has adopted a temporary rule to allow Remote Online Notarization (RON) as a response to Corona Virus (COVID-19) and quarantine and social distancing recommendations at the state and federal level.  Below is the new rule put out by the Colorado Secretary of State Notary Division: As temporarily adopted and effective 3/30/2020 Rule 5. Remote Notarization 5.1 Definitions As used in these Rules, unless stated otherwise: 5.1.1 “Audio-video communication” means communication by which an individual is able to see, hear, and communicate with a remotely...


RON and Other Creative Ways Notaries are Working During COVID-19  

Can we all agree that this has been one of the most interesting months in history for notary signing agents? And, of course, by "interesting," what I really mean is it's crazy out there.   The topics that I said we would cover this time hardly seem relevant to our world today.  That was on March 9, 2020 in a pre-national COVID-19 emergency where the phrase "keeping social distance" held no meaning for us. Here we are three weeks later, my local FedEx station has pastel blue boxes for people to stand in so that they stay six feet apart.  For grins, go back and look at the article from the 9th (Remote Online Notarization - Positive RON News) and the...


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Northern California Notary Instructor Job

Notary Learning Center, Inc. has been a State Certified Education Vendor in California since 2004, providing Notary Public and Signing Agent training. Information about our company and the services we offer can be found by visiting us at: https://www.CaliforniaNotaryExam.com https://www.NotaryLearningCenter.com Position: Notary Public Class Instructor** This is a part time position as an independent contractor working for       Notary Learning Center, Inc. We are in need of a class instructor to teach the 6 hour California State Mandated Notary Public training class. We also offer a Notary Signing Agent Class (loan document training). Location: Northern California (Bay Area) Experience:  Must have experience teaching in a classroom environment and/or a background in public speaking. Someone who is already a Notary Public and/or Notary Signing Agent is preferred. Responsibilities/Requirements: Must have reliable transportation Must...


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Remote Online Notarization – RON – a Positive Update

I have positive news to share regarding remote online notarization (RON).  It is now more affordable for notaries to enter the RON arena! Last year, I reported that DocVerify was the only company willing to work with independent notaries who want to perform remote online notarization (RON).  At the time, I had talked with several platform companies, none of whom offered seats to individual independent notaries.  So, that left one company for us to choose from and there was no competition.  SIGNix is Now Available to Independent Notaries! Before I wrote the previous RON article (Should you become a Remote Online Notary?), I called SIGNix  because I genuinely liked the people I had met from SIGNix.  In fact, I had the opportunity to...


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Knowledge is the Key to Securing Your Notary Career

News reports have appeared across the U.S. indicate that notaries aren't aware that notarizing documents improperly or charging unjustified fees can cause any or all of the following punishments; the notary can be Sued for damages Jailed for a crime Sanctioned with fines Involved in a class action lawsuit Since it has been about nine months since I last wrote about the importance of training, and I am bringing it up again because I know that it is the first line of defense to ensure you can protect yourself.   Please note that  in my closing remarks, I'll give you a mini-update on my thoughts on remote online notarization and how this article relates to that.  Continuing Self-education is Critical Most states do not have laws requiring...


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Part 5 – Mobile Devices and Apps for Loan Signing Agent / Notary Work

We are on the final installment of  Necessary Technology for Notary Signing Agents in 2020.  Today, the most important message is this:   All apps are not safe!  The first thing that you need to do is find a great antivirus app and download it on your mobile device to make sure that none of your files or apps are infected. Secondly, do not retain any of your signer's/borrower's non-public private information on your phone.   Avoid taking pictures of driver licenses or passports.  Delete documents that contain borrowers' SSA numbers from your mobile device as soon as you complete the assignment.  Other than standard apps like printing apps, signing service apps, platform apps, contact management, calendars, email, and messaging, I have listed below...


Part 4 – The Best Printers for New Notary Signing Agents

We are on Part 5 of  Necessary Technology for Notary Signing Agents in 2020 and today, we are going to talk about printers.  In case you missed the previous three articles on technology in general, scanners, and computers, those are linked at the bottom of this article.  We will cover standalone printers rather than all-in-one printers that scan, print, and fax.  I prefer a standalone printers and scanners because they are more flexible and are easier to transport in my vehicle in the event that I have to take one of them with me to a signing appointment. Durable, good quality all-in-one items are fairly expensive. The cheaper ones don't usually do as well when pushed to scan 200 pages or...


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Part 3 – Investing in a Computer (Necessary Technology for Notary Signing Agents in 2020)

We are now in Part 3 of a series on the type of technology and equipment that \notary signing agents should consider for 2020 and this segment will provide guidance for new notaries on purchasing a computer that will support a notary business for $400 or less. You may have seen computers on sale for $200-$300 and wondered if they would work for you.  It’s tempting! But all low-priced computers are not alike!  Many times, the "super deal" computers are made with inferior parts that are becoming obsolete or unwanted.  This article will help you avoid those.  If you don’t want to wade through the explanations, jump straight to the section entitled “Shopping Cheat Sheet.”   It lists a couple of configurations that...


Part 2: Purchasing a Scanner for NSA Work (Necessary Technology for Notary Signing Agents in 2020)

As a new notary signing agent, you will be asked to scan back documents so that loans can fund based on the signed documents that you submit showing proof of proper execution of critical documents.  Or, you may be asked to scan back documents as a means for the hiring party to quality check your work from time to time. Sometimes, you'll be asked to pick certain documents from a stack of loan documents to scan back to the hiring party, or it could be the entire package of documents.  In other words, you're going to be scanning back 10 to 200 pages when "scan backs" are required.  For me, there’s nothing worse than having that to do while dealing with...


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