Training for Notaries & Signing Agents
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Training for Notaries & Signing Agents
Basic Notary Public TrainingIn most states you are required to take a state-approved training course given by state-approved instructors. Some state websites, like California, post a listing of approved courses and instructors. Your first step is to go to your state's Notary site to see what your state mandates, then find an appropriate course.
For the basic Notary Public course, look at your local level. There are many websites that offer training for all states, but the best training will come from within your own state. It's very hard for a global site to keep up with all the state law changes in every state. Some of the best training courses can be found in your community's adult education listings. Some are also offered at community colleges, and even some universities.
You can also find online courses. Some are better than others. If your state requires you to take a state-approved course before you pass the state test, make sure that the course you choose has state approval. Some online courses are only meant to help teach and prepare you. Don't confuse practice tests with the official state test you will still have to take and pass. If you find a state-approved online course, you will still have to sign up for the official proctored state test after you take the online course. There are no official online tests, at least not yet. But approved online courses are an option to prepare for the final test.
Some things to check before you sign up for any course:
If you sign up for live training, often the proctored official state test is given right after the training while everything is fresh in your mind. If you don't pass the test the first time, you will be able to take it again for a lower fee. Many training courses guarantee that you'll pass, and allow you to repeat training until you do.
If you choose an online course, you can often find one of the live classes mentioned above and drop in for just the proctored testing in order to complete the process.
So, again, your first course of action is to go to your state's Notary Public website, follow directions and suggestions. Then you can shop for a training course that fits your location, budget and schedule, and ultimately plan to take the state testing. Then you just wait for the state to send you your results and follow directions to complete the process. loan signing agent section, training is not mandated by the state or any other governing authority. However, it's a good idea, and probably necessary if you have no previous experience. If you become certified, you can use that fact in promoting your services on your business card, invoices and letterhead.
There are dozens of training courses available for becoming a loan signing agent. Some are very good, but extremely expensive. Some are expensive and not so good. And some are very cheap and not even worth the low cost. My opinion is that, keeping in mind that this training is nice to have, but not required by law, you should find the lowest cost course that does the best job. How do you judge that? I have a few suggestions that might help.
The best known source for all things Notary is the NNA (National Notary Association). There is definitely no argument that you'll get good training from them. However, it's also the most expensive. My problem with them is that they are trying hard to regulate this area and be the only approved source for education. The information on their site gives the distinct impression that this is already the case. It just isn't so. I'd like to see Notaries, once they have fulfilled state mandates for their commission, still have some entrepreneurial avenues left unregulated. Regulating this area imposes more red tape and expense, and just isn't necessary.
The truth is you can get all the education and training you need free if you're willing to look for it. But it takes time to research and put it all together. I've reviewed lots of training materials. Some are excellent, and many leave a lot missing. Of course, I recommend my own training manual, and I'll tell you why. My feedback indicates that my course leaves nothing out and is even better than the nationally known one. It offers more at less than half the cost. It's very thorough and detailed and covers everything; from what a loan signing agent can and can't do, to exactly what to say and do for each document in the loan packet (sample documents included), to how to start your own mobile Notary loan signing business. Below is a typical comment from a newly-certified agent:
before this one, and this one wins hands down!"
Take a look at the course description and decide for yourself. It's reasonably priced and covers everything you need to know, plus some. Becoming a signing agent was the answer for me when, for many personal reasons, I needed my work to be from a home business. Imagine how pleased I felt when I discovered I could make more working part time than I ever did at a full-time job.
I wish the same success for you, whatever you decide to do.
Comprehensive Certification Course
& Reference Manual
212 pages, including a final exam
Professionally-bound course delivered by Priority Mail