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How to make money as a notary public

how to make money as a notary public

Notaries play a critical role in the legal system, serving as impartial witnesses to the signing of important documents. However, beyond the recognition of their official capacity, many notaries seek ways to transform this responsibility into ways to make money. The motivation for starting a notary business is often twofold: to capitalize on the demand for notarial services and to achieve financial independence. As a notary public, understanding how to monetize your qualifications and experience can help you not only start a business but open doors to a steady stream of income. Whether it's through diversifying your services or leveraging business acumen, there are numerous business ideas for notaries to explore that will lead to a sustainable and profitable career.

How to make money as a notary public: characteristics for success

A profitable notary public is someone who not only understands the legal aspects of notarization but also excels in running their services as a business. There are several characteristics that are essential to running a successful business and making money as a notary public:

Tip: Learn how to start a service business with our guide.

Exceptional organizational skills

A profitable notary must be highly organized. This includes managing appointments (scheduling software can help with this), keeping accurate records and ensuring all documents are notarized correctly. Being organized also means adhering to state laws and regulations, which can vary widely and have serious implications for notaries who do not comply.

Strong networking abilities

To make money with a notary business, building a strong network is essential. This means connecting with potential clients such as law firms, real estate agencies and banks, as well as other notaries who might provide referrals. Networking also involves community engagement, attending professional gatherings and utilizing social media platforms to increase visibility.

Marketing savvy

A successful notary public knows how to market their services effectively. This can include everything from creating a website to engaging in local advertising. Understanding the target audience and tailoring marketing strategies to reach these potential clients is crucial for business growth.

Diverse service offerings

Lastly, diversification of services can significantly boost a notary's income. Offering mobile notary services, specializing in certain types of notarizations like loan signings, or providing related services such as fingerprinting or wedding officiating can attract a wider client base and increase profitability.

13 ways to make money as a notary public

The notary public profession offers a variety of ways to monetize your skills. Here are 13 methods to consider when choosing the right business idea for you.

01. Mobile notary services

Mobile notaries travel to their clients, providing convenience and saving them time. You can charge a travel fee in addition to the notarization charges, which can significantly increase your earnings. This is a great way to make money if you live in an area where access to a public notary might be limited. It also enables you to cover a larger area, with more potential clients.

02. Specialize in real estate closings

Make money as a notary public by becoming a loan signing agent and specializing in notarizing real estate documents. Loan signings are often more complex and command higher fees.

03. Work with law firms

Law firms frequently require notarizations for various legal documents. Establishing a relationship with local firms can provide a steady stream of business and help you to make consistent money as a notary public.

04. Partner with banks and financial institutions

Banks and financial institutions need notaries for documents like mortgage papers or trust documents. Partnering with them can lead to regular notarial work and a consistent way to make money as a notary public. You can do this without having to work in-house with the bank, you can be employed on a short to long-term contract basis.

05. Offer notary services for medical documents

Medical documents often require notarization. Offering your services to hospitals and health care providers, as well as patients and their families, can be a successful way to make money as a notary public.

06. Conduct marriage ceremonies

In some states, notaries are authorized to perform marriage ceremonies. This can be an enjoyable and profitable addition to your services and a fun, joyful way to make money as a notary public. An event website can help you showcase your services and attract more clients.

07. Provide notarization for academic documents

Students and educators frequently need notarization services for academic records and transcripts. Connect with local schools and universities to tap into this market in order to increase your income as a notary public.

08. Cater to travelers for passport and visa documentation

Travelers often need notarized copies of their identification for visas and passports. Marketing to this audience can open up another revenue stream as a notary public.

09. Notarize immigration documents

Immigration documents require notarization. Providing services to immigration lawyers and their clients can be both rewarding and profitable for notary publics.

10. Offer after-hours notary services

By offering after-hours services, you can cater to clients who need notarizations outside of normal business hours, allowing you to charge premium rates. You might also find this proves to be a lucrative way to make money if no one else offers this service.

Learn more:

11. Conduct workshops and training

If you have extensive experience, you can conduct workshops or training sessions for new notaries or those looking to expand their skills. You can charge for attendance tickets or sell them as course packages, either in-person or online. These can also be a great source of passive income, as you create once and sell forever. It can also be a way to make money online.

12. Provide notary services for adoption agencies

Adoption agencies require notarized documents throughout the adoption process. Offering your services to these agencies can lead to a consistent way to make money as a notary public.

13. Create a notary public blog or social media channel

Share your expertise online through a blog or YouTube channel. Monetize your content with ads, sponsorships, affiliate marketing or by offering premium content for a fee.

Learn more:

How to start making money as a notary public

Starting a notary business requires a thoughtful approach to ensure legal compliance and business success. Here's a guide to help you set up your notary public business:

Understand state requirements

Each state has different requirements for becoming a notary public. Familiarize yourself with your state's laws regarding training, exams, background checks and any necessary bonding or insurance.

Let’s take the mandatory requirements in California as an example:

  • Must be over 18 years old

  • Must be a legal California resident

  • Must have completed a course of study approved by the Secretary of State

  • Must complete and pass a written exam set by the Secretary of State

  • Must clear a background check

Obtain your notary commission

Complete the necessary steps to obtain your notary commission in your state. This may include submitting an application, paying a fee and passing a notary exam.

In California, you must:

  • Complete the approved education set by the Secretary of State

  • Register for and take the set exam

  • Submit your fingerprints via a live scan

  • Receive your commission packet

  • Purchase the necessary notary public materials

  • File your notary public oath and bond

Purchase your notary supplies

Once commissioned, you'll need to purchase your notary supplies, such as your notary seal, stamp and journal. Ensure these comply with your state's regulations.

In California, for example, you need to adhere to the following:

  • Notary public bond: must purchase and file an official bond with the county clerk's office in the county where their principal place of business is located within 30 calendar days from the commencement date of the commission. (Government Code 8213). You can use any insurance or bond company you choose, there are no set ones.

  • Notarial public journal: can be bought at any stationary store but must be kept for all notarial acts. (Government Code 8206)

  • Notary public seal: can only be purchased from a state-approved seal maker, the full list will be in the notary public commission pack.

Set up your business structure

Decide on a business structure for your notary services, such as sole proprietorship, LLC, or corporation. Consider consulting with a business advisor or attorney to choose the best business entity for your situation.

Create a business plan

Draft a business plan that outlines your services, pricing, marketing strategies and financial projections. This will serve as a roadmap for your business and can be helpful if you need to apply for business loans or seek investment.

Market your services

Develop marketing materials and strategies to promote your notary services. This can include business cards, flyers and online marketing through social media and professional networking sites.

You should also make a website in order to promote your business, you can also use it to take client bookings. This will also include choosing and registering a domain name that reflects your professional services. Opt also for reliable web hosting (with Wix it's free).

Design a website that is easy to navigate. Include information about your services, pricing and contact details. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly. Then optimize for SEO and add a blog if you need.

How to make money as a notary public FAQ

What are the typical startup costs for a notary public business?

The startup costs for a notary public business can vary by state due to different requirements for bonding, insurance and supplies. Generally, you can expect to pay for your notary commission, notary seal and stamp, notary journal and any educational courses or exams required by your state.

Can I run a notary business from home?

How much can I charge for notary services?

Is it necessary to have a website for my notary public business?

How can I market my notary services to attract more clients?

Do I need additional training to become a notary signing agent?

What are some common mistakes to avoid when making money as a notary public?

Other ways to make money you might want to consider

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