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📍 📍 📍 We first met. And I don’t know if you remember this, but I had posted on Facebook for my RON application, I needed a notary and you answered that you could do it because I think it was on a Saturday and I didn’t really want to go anywhere. And you did my notary for me. And then during the notarization, I was asking you like a billion questions.
Do you remember, do you remember? So then that stuck, I’ve been annoying you ever since. But I do appreciate you being like such a good mentor to me and answering any questions that I have, or listening to me when I have. You know, obstacles that I’ve don’t know how to navigate, but yeah.
So, she has, oh, (this is) Yahaira Rodriguez from Legally Notarized and you’ve been a notary for about how long?
Over 18 years, a little over 18 years.
And then how long have you been doing RON?
I’ve been doing RON since it became legal in the state of Florida in 2020. March of 2020. I started to do RON. I actually took on, I don’t know if you want me to go into it, but I actually took on my first RON job was with Notarize and so I gained a lot of experience of RON through Notarize, through the platform.
And after being with them for a few months, they kind of did the little changing. They changed all the runs to contract 1099 type of RONs. And as they were doing that, I knew that wasn’t a good fit for me. So that’s when I kind of, went out and I looked for another position and I found a position with First American Title.
I was their RON manager. It was a RON manager, RON supervisor. So I did that for a few months and then after being with them for a few months, I kind of decided to go out on my own and going out on my own was the best decision that I ever made.
Yeah, because you do this full time now, right?
I do. I do Monday through Friday. Not the weekends unless it’s, you know, but I’m on Monday through Friday. My business hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a. m. to 4 p. m. So yeah.
And on an average, I know about how many notarizations do you kind of typically see a day or like, how do you…?
Okay. So it fluctuates because I have I have contracts with roofing companies with you know, construction companies with a lot of their documentation that needs to be notarized.
I have a lot of notice of commencements, releases, release of liens, notice of terminations. A lot of these documents have to be notarized and you know, they give me a list of the clients of customers that they have that needs to be signed and notarized. And I reach out to them. I schedule, I have a scheduling coordinator that she’s on with me full time and she schedules all of my appointments.
So she’ll make phone calls, she’ll fill up my schedule. So in a day I can have anywhere from eight to you know, 12, I’ve had 13, 14 and a day, but on a slow day, I would say anywhere from like five to eight signings a day. And it could be, it could include you know, again, the contracts that I have, it could include real estate transactions.
It can include a lot of different things because I have diversified my business to a lot of different avenues. So I’m, I’m out there.
Yeah. That’s a good, like, that’s. I agree with diversifying income because we’ve all seen how the interest rates can really make the market fluctuate.
So yeah, I don’t like putting all my eggs in one basket either as far as…
Absolutely not, especially with, yeah, like you said, real estate interest going up so high. So we saw a drop on refis. But there’s still a lot of buyers and sellers going on out there, so mm-hmm. , I do a lot of packages that include buyers and sellers together.
Mm-hmm. . So I have done that. I do that all the time. It’s very popular where buyers and sellers are coming onto the same transaction or that the title company says, “Hey, here, try and coordinate with the buyer and the seller. If they can’t do it together, then you can do them separate”. But you know, I do that quite a bit.
That’s a good idea too, because then you wouldn’t have to pay as many transaction fees for the platform too. That’s a good idea.
Yep. That’s correct. I give them, I pass down to them the savings that I get for doing them together. So if I do them together, I’m not paying for that second platform transaction fee.
So I, you know, I give them a discount.
Nice. That’s I’m gonna have to start thinking about that because. I mean, usually I do it where it’s like the sellers and then the buyers are separate and everything. So I just didn’t really think about that. But see It’s all the time, but that is something that I stress for and I’d like I’m so thankful for you for talking about this because you’ve given me so many good ideas about how to do everything that it’s really, really helpful in my business.
Like, I wouldn’t be where I’m at right now if it wasn’t for you. So, you know. Thank you.
For like for being such an open book and like helping me so much because it’s, you’re one of the main components of why I do what I do as far as putting myself out there on the internet and making all of the videos because you helped me so like I wouldn’t be where I’m at today If you hadn’t have been so open with me and told me like yeah I do this full time and this is kind of how I schedule stuff and this is how I do this and it’s like “Oh my gosh” because you’re the one that told me how to kind of introduce RON and you are continually helpful and I wanted to thank you.
You’re welcome, but I don’t want to take all the credit for it because you are definitely a tough cookie and you push through. So, you know, You’re pushing me through to do this interview because I’m not too much of a YouTube or being in front of an audience. So I’m usually a one on one type of person.
So thank you for allowing me and pushing me to do this.
Well, I mean, yeah it’s all about getting a different like growth mindset and like getting out of your comfort zone, which is all I do all the time.
I do want to say, you know, like it’s this day and age, it’s all about like innovation, innovate yourself, you know, a lot of people are still stuck on the mobile notary side of things and that’s the only thing that they do. And I’ve been to a lot of networking events and you know, meetings and meet and greets and stuff like that. And you have a lot of, I’ve met with a lot of notaries who are like, Oh no, I haven’t, I haven’t really gotten into RON yet.
To me, that’s a red flag because RON is here to stay. RON is is what it is. You know, this is what the notary world is moving into. So if you’re not in it yet, jump on it ASAP because if not, you’re going to be left behind. And You know, so like I’m going to give you like a brief example. I spoke with someone who does only mobile notary work.
And when he tells me, Oh, how much do you charge for this? Or, you know, we’re talking about pricing. And you know, when I tell him, I said, listen, I’m not turning on my car. To go notarize a document for that amount of money, when I can be doing it at home, I said, you know, you are getting paid to do one document.
I’m getting paid for three times the amount. And I’m doing it in the comfort of my home office. Like I don’t have to turn on my car. I don’t have to waste gas. I don’t have to you know, I get trust from the bottom up.
I’m in front of the computer screen all day. So yes, you have to pay the RON platform, but that’s why you charge, you know, accordingly and don’t under, don’t underestimate your ability of being a RON once you get that first RON out of the way. You know, it goes up from there because sky’s the limit.
And then also like the time that it takes, cause I, did like an estimation. If you drive like two hours, like an hour there, you do it an hour back. Like you have to account for scan backs, printing two things. Then going to the FedEx office, like there’s so much more time than like, Oh yeah, I did this signing or you know, I did a notice of commencement and I, it took me five minutes.
I was like, well, yeah, but you drove two hours to get there and then you have to go to the FedEx store and that is your time too. So then really it’s like three hours or four hours, depending on what you ended up doing for Something that you could have done, like you could have accounted your time better, better.
Yeah, for sure. And another thing is, is that if I’m not saying that I took mobile notarization completely out of my way. I mean, I want to say about 95 percent of my work is RON. It’s virtual. It’s doing it online. I probably want to say about 98%, but I’m just not, I don’t want to, but if I’m going to get, if I’m going outside of my house to go notarize a document, you’re going to not only pay for my gas, you’re going to pay for my admin time.
You’re going to pay for my stamp. And. So it doesn’t come out, you know, a lot of states have, you know, a set fee that you can charge for your stamp. A lot of people don’t take into consideration that you can charge for your time, you can charge for travel fees. So you really need to, and if your time, The way I see it is that if you, you need to set an hourly rate for yourself, what is your worth?
And let’s say your hourly rate is $50 and I’m just throwing this number out there, but let’s just say your hourly rate is 50 and to meet with somebody to go not notarize a document. And it’s going to take you, let’s say about 30 minutes. You scheduled that signing for about 30 minutes. It’s just a one document, but you have to drive over there meet with them and stuff So, you know 30 minutes is going to be $25 for your hour of going your half an hour I’m going to go meet with them.
So, you know charge your $25 you charge your in the state of florida it’s $10 for your stamp and then on top of that, what are you going to charge for gas? So you know, one stamp did not come out to $10. I didn’t make $10 on this transaction. I made $50, $60 on this one document that, you know, I did notarization for and it was done mobile.
Well, yeah, because I see in the, in the groups and everything about like, well, how am I supposed to make any money if I’m only allowed to charge like a certain amount? And it’s like, well, yeah, for the actual notarization itself, yes, but you’re doing other things. Like it’s not just, you’re not like for anyone that thinks that all we do is like stamp something and then go about our business.
That is not what we do whatsoever.
Not at all. Yeah. So, there’s a lot more that goes into it. I’ve, I’ve seen people do like document preparation fees. You know, there’s a lot of stuff that goes into it, like administration, scheduling platform fees things like that to kind of take into consideration and I struggle with that.
I struggle with pricing. So, you know that.
Hey I charge the, is this, you know, kind of discuss it. But always a learning curve, like, you know, I still, you know, I learned a lot from people who have been in the industry, I’ve been in it for a little over 18 years, but I have people that I go to and I kind of get some information and little feedbacks and they’ve been in the industry for over 25, 30 years.
So, you know, you never stop learning. It’s always a learning process and it’s all about how you initiate, like put it into… into play.
Because, like, I’ve had, and I don’t even know how many times, but I’ve probably lost out on on money or like timeframes for when I have been doing stuff.
And especially with mobile notary. I think there was one time it was like a nightmare mobile closing, but it was like 300 pages. I had to do it twice. Like you have to print it out twice because you leave it usually with the signer and then you take the real one. So I drove, I think half an hour, I printed out 300 pages twice and it was like for not as much as what I should have charged and I I lost out on that because my gas and everything. So yeah, you want to make sure, that you don’t do what I did and charge according to your worth and how much your time is actually worth so…
Another thing that I want to discuss because we’re talking about RON is scripts. Yes. You know, scripts are very important to have. I literally have a script right here. I read it every single day. I don’t even have to look at it, but I still have it in my face just in case if you freeze up because it happens from time to time because you got like 200,000 things going through your mind and you know, you can freeze up.
And so I just glance at my script and I pick up where I left off, but it’s extremely important to have a script to go by. Make sure that you are asking the questions that need to be asked. Having the signer state what they need to state. They always need to state their first and last name. You know, you always have to say, are you participating in today’s notarization of your own free will?
Do you understand the contents of the documents that you’re going to sign? Do you agree to use an electronic signature to sign the documents? And I always add, do you understand and agree that by signing these documents, you legally bind yourself to the terms of these documents? So people really understand that, you know, this is a serious transaction.
This is like if we’re doing it face to face in person and we need to make sure that you have everything recorded and everything on video. I know one thing that this is like a little thing that I do. And I think I told you about this, Katie, once is that I always have my customers, I always have them state, you know, their first, last name.
I always tell them if it’s a, if it’s a one pager, like a notice of commencement or, you know, something that doesn’t, isn’t too yeah, exactly. I won’t have them do it, but you know, for a RON real estate transaction, I will always have my client like hold up their driver’s license to the camera.
Just kind of like this, that way, you know, If the only thing that we have left is a recording and this goes to court, the judge sees recording and the judge is always going to see . What they’re holding up the driver’s license information. Every time they hold it up to the camera, I always state, okay, so you have a Florida driver’s license and it’s driver’s license number D as in dog, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. And it doesn’t expire until January 13th, 2028. So that’s perfect. Thank you, Katie. I was able to validate your ID. Just because if all else fails and we only have a recording and it goes to court, then that to me proves that I did my part in validating and looking at the driver’s license and confirming that this person was the person that’s in front of me and the driver’s license matches the person that’s in front of me as well.
And so, you know, I always go that extended mile every real estate transaction that goes down. Any wills and trust that goes down. So that’s extremely important. You know, aside from the script too you know, that I feel is a good thing to cover your bases. Yeah. Yes, yes, for sure. A hundred percent.
I think that that’s a good idea too, because as far as like there’s nothing saying that we can’t. The state of Florida says that we can ask for extra things to be able to validate their ID and like just their credentials. So it’s not going against any rules to have them do that.
The more, the better, the more, the better. Yeah. Yeah. I would rather have too much than too little.
That’s kind of like the part where, oh, how do you want this person to sign on the line? Right? Yeah. So it’s always, they can always sign more, not less. Mm-hmm. . So sometimes you have, and I get this question a lot, oh, this person has a middle name and
you know, it doesn’t say the middle name underneath the line that they’re signing. How? How should they sign? Well, they can sign with their middle name because they’re always signing more, not less than what’s underneath the line. And that still will be valid.
Well, and then just another note because I’ve seen this go back like, there was a, let’s just say a John Doe Jr.
And then the notary didn’t have him put the junior, like the, the name matched the name, matched the ID and everything, but they didn’t put junior at the signing. And so that notary had to redo the whole entire signing again and it was a time sensitive thing. So if, if it’s on the paperwork, as long as everything matches, even if it’s like a middle name or a middle initial, I always have them
put that because you don’t want it to go back. And yeah.
Definitely. When it’s a junior or the third or something like that, that is mandatory. That is a must, because if not right now, this person is signing as their dad because you’re really the junior, you know? So, yeah, there’s a fine line there that needs to be added.
And yeah, that’s for sure. That’s why I always say sign more, never less. And if his driver’s license says Jr. but the document doesn’t say as Jr. Oh you’re signing as Jr. because that’s what your driver’s license says. And, if you’re not supposed to be the Jr. that’s signing, then I’ve covered my bases.
You know, you weren’t the correct person, you know?
Yeah, okay, so this is like an interesting thing that happened to me and I don’t think this lady was not happy with me, but I wasn’t about to do this. Let’s just say her name was Elizabeth E L I Z A and her, the way that it was spelled on her.
Documentation was E. L. Y. Z. A. So it was not the same. Like it did not match. And so I was like, I see that it’s very, very similar. Like, I get that. I get the jump from I to Y, but I need the documents to match. So I put a hard stop. I was like, you know, I would like to do this, but we have to call title. We have to get these documents redone in your correct name, it has to match. You know, that’s fine that you like that spelling better, but that’s not what I’m doing. You know, like I’m validating the…
The job of notary is to confirm that you are signing who they say they are. And you’re going based off of what their driver’s license says, what ID they’re using to support who they are.
And if it’s spelled differently, then you’re not signing you. That’s not the correct Elizabeth. There’s something wrong here.
Because for all I know, and I’m not, I’m not questioning like anyone’s character, but like one, I don’t know them. And two, they could have just found an Elizabeth with the same last name off the street, you know, whatever.
So I’m not dealing with that. That’s my commission. That’s how I make my living. I’m not messing with my stuff just so that you can sign with your preferred, you know, so yeah, that was an interesting, they were not happy with me, but I stood my ground because it’s not worth it. So, yeah.
Did you want to talk about like signing services?
I know there’s kind of like a little fine line there. And I do want to say like with signing services they’re good for starters, they’re good for fillers. Yeah. To kinda fill in your calendar. You know, but I want for notaries to not really rely on signing services. I want for notaries to really get out there and put themselves out there.
If these signing services can find the business. You can find it as well. That’s really important for you to understand that service, there’s title companies want to work direct with who is notarizing the document, who is doing the closing. So, go out there, put yourself out there, present yourself drop off business cards mean what you say and, you know, and say what you mean. And then always look, play the part and look presentable because I have I don’t know if you can see it, but I have my shirt.
I got shirts made and you know, when I go out there and I go and drop off business cards and I’m meeting with title companies or attorneys or paralegals you know, I look well represented. I look like I mean business. I have a website that’s extremely important to have. I want to throw that out there, have a website that you know, explains everything, everything that you do have your pricing, let that be clear.
What your price is to do a real estate transaction. Let’s see. Another thing is “Google my business” That’s extremely important. Have that out there and ask for reviews. Ask your clients for reviews. You know, you have a signing that went well and you know it went well. So go ahead and ask that client for a review.
But “Google business page” is extremely important to have a website and, yeah.
That’s that’s good advice. I love that you said that if signing services can find the business you can to. That’s, That’s perfect. I want to I want to get that framed because I see people that are like “well how do I get business?”
It’s like well, you kind of just have to go out there and it is hard It is hard.
Having this as your full time job It’s not for the weak. You have to have some tough skin and you have to throw yourself out there. I know it’s easier said than done, especially with me not being like, you know, I don’t like to be on front street on these videos and stuff, but you know, meeting knocking on doors and have a business Instagram page, have a business Facebook page and you know, you’ve got DMs.
You know, shoot a message to somebody, you know, title company and their DM and present yourself. And, you know, if you see that they’re close by, get out there and get into their office because a lot of people, a lot of title companies, a lot of escrow officers, a lot of lenders, they’re still learning the RON
curve. So, if you have the knowledge or gain the knowledge of RON get out there and promote it because once they learn about it, that’s all they want to do. That’s all they want to do.
Yeah, I converted my a local title company and that’s literally all she does now. And she’s, she keeps sending me all of this.
She’s like, “do you, can you do this?” Like multiple signers in different locations. I was like, you know, like send them over to me. Yeah. So, and then the other thing that I wanted to say is for like my Instagram, I feel so silly posting about it and like making content and like doing all of this stuff, but I have gotten so many clients from that.
And sometimes it’s happened twice that I’ve like actually paid attention to where like I’ll cold call them or I’ll email them. And then they, I have my information. They follow me on Instagram, kind of just watch like my, you know, and then I get the clients from that. Like I’ve gotten a title company and a really busy realty office.
Just from posting on Instagram. So, I mean, yeah, it does work. Even though I do feel a little bit, silly.
So, I mean, you know, whatever it takes to get the business. Another thing is, is networking between notaries. Like, you’d be surprised how much work I get from other notaries that say, Hey, I have a RON transaction.
I’ve never done it before. I don’t want to do it. And it’s just like, “Oh, okay, well, this is my price and if you’re willing to pay my price, then, you know, I can fit you in my schedule and I hate to say it that way. But you know, You have a price and your time is, is your price and if you’re not charging accordingly, then you’re going to be sinking underwater and then you’re going to be the type, the one that has to go out there and look for a part time job while you’re doing notary as a part time job, you know, so in the real world, charge your price.
I always love this. This thing that Fat Joe says, I don’t know if you know who Fat Joe is, but he always says “yesterday’s price isn’t today’s price”. Okay. So I always, I love that because it’s like, you know what? And every single year at the end of the year, I send out a new price sheet to all of my clients.
So like title companies, attorneys, paralegals I sent out a new price sheet for them because the price is going up. You know, it’s another year of experience. It’s another year of doing business with me and the cost of living isn’t going down. It’s going up. So even if it’s 5 that it goes up, it doesn’t, you don’t have to, you know, it can go up gradually, but it needs to go up because your worth just went up, you know, yesterday’s price isn’t today’s price.
Yeah. Well, plus the thing about all of the, so if you’re a notary that is in business and worth your time, like the notaries that I see are successful are continually learning, continually doing networking and like bringing more basically to the table as far as learning everything. So it makes sense.
You’re getting more experience, so you should charge more. It’s like getting a haircut. Like, yes, I can go get a pair of scissors and cut your hair, but do you want me to, or do you want someone that has this experience? They’ve gone to classes, they’ve done training. Like I would rather pay a little bit more for someone that is going to cut my hair nicely.
Then go get. You know, chicken shears. So…
Yeah. And everybody knows the cost of, you know, lashes, of hair, nails, all of that has gone up, so why shouldn’t your price go up, you know? Yeah, yeah. You know, so, yeah, that’s very important. Mm-hmm. ? I do wanna say that I do, do you know, consultations as you know, and I do want to throw that out there because yes, I do share some little tips and stuff like that on Instagram, but you know, there’s a lot of tools and tips that I have learned while doing my deep research and my years of knowledge that I don’t share for free.
Yeah, no. That makes sense.
I just don’t share for free. You know, so, so if you do want to consult or a mock session, a one on one to see how I do it I know you do a lot of mock sessions, Katie, everybody has their way of doing it, but if you want to learn my way and you want to get a little bit of insight on how I do it, then you know, feel free to reach out to me.
And then what’s the best way to reach out to you?
Well, actually we can put it in the description below too.
Yes. Yes. We can do it.
Yep. Or you can always go on my website and and book a consultation. Send me an email. But yeah, I’m here to help. But if you’re willing to pay, you’ll get a little bit more of the deeper, good stuff that I you know, that I share with people.
Yeah. Well, thank you for coming on. I know you were a little bit nervous, but you did great.
You know, I, I would, I would watch us. So, yeah, thank you. You know, you were a natural though, as far as like coming on. I wouldn’t say that. No you did good. So, thank you.
I do want to say one more thing. Yeah, for beginners. Okay, for beginners that are looking to come into the RON world. I want to throw this out there that I always kind of refer them because I get asked, Kate, what platforms do you use? And I’m not going to say it on here what platforms I use because that’s my secret.
And if you pay for my consultation, you will find out. But I always throw out there for beginners. I always throw BlueNotary because always, always, because I feel like BlueNotary is it’s good for people who are beginning. You guys have a lot of good customer service. If people have questions, you know, you guys have that Facebook page.
I’m always in there and following and stuff. People do need to know and understand that BlueNotary is not here to give you business, you know, it’s a platform and yes, it can provide business here and there where you’ll have a little ring and, but you know, it’s first come first serve but you shouldn’t rely on
BlueNotary to give you business. You need to get out there, move your tush and find your own business and use BlueNotary as a platform for RON. Yeah.
Oh, well, thank you. I appreciate that. Yeah, no, I really, I really like us too, but yeah, that is really, really good advice because I do see that where, you know, I, sometimes people are, are struggling or, or might be thinking that.
That’s the way to kind of, yeah.
I see a lot of what platform gives you business? Who can I sign up with that gives you business and that shouldn’t be, if that’s your way of going about your notary business, then you really shouldn’t be in it because you’re going to always, you’re going to continuously be looking for who’s going to give me business, who, what platform.
And in reality, you need to move, you need to go look for business. You need to go knock on some doors, bang on some doors and send out some emails and throw out some marketing, you know, techniques out there. So…
Yeah. The people that are going to give you the business are the business partners that you go out and get.
Yeah. So, but thank you for saying that too, because it’s always a little bit of a, a delicate subject sometimes. So, you know.
But you know, those are your beginners.
Yeah, yeah. But I am going to sign off because I have, I think, another signing pretty soon here, but I appreciate you taking the time and thank you guys for watching.