How to Become a Notary Signing Agent in New York? (Step-By-Step Guide)


real estate notary signing agent

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How to become a notary loan signing agent in New York? To become a notary loan signing agent in New York, you need to submit the application to the New York Department of State’s Division of Licensing Services, pass the NY notary exam, pay the filing fee, purchase the notary seal and journal. 

So what does a loan signing agent do in New York? When people are getting a mortgage to purchase a house, or they need to refinance their property, there will be loan documents involved. Your role as a notary loan signing agent is to walk through the set of loan documents with the borrower and witness them in signing the paperwork. 

You would also need to verify the identity of the signers, place the notary stamp on the signed documents, then send them back to the escrow company. 

But keep in mind that you should NOT be providing legal advice, and you cannot explain the terms of the loan documents to the borrower.  

In this guide, you’ll find the steps to become a notary loan signing agent in New York, income updates. What does it take to work in this profession? And other helpful details about this career. 

Note that this guide is for general information only and not to provide any professional advice. Although I’ve tried to put down info as accurate as I could possibly find, you should always refer back to the New York Notary Commission and the State law. 

5 Steps to Become a Notary Loan Signing Agent in New York

5 Steps to Become a Notary Loan Signing Agent in New York

Step 1: Meet the basic requirement

  • At least 18 years of age
  • US Citizen
  • Legal resident or or have an office/place of business in the New York State
  • Has the equivalent of a common school education
  • Able to read and write English

Step 2: Pass the New York Notary Exam

How to register the NY notary exam?

The NYS Notary exam is a walk-in exam, and you can register on the day of writing at the test center. There are testing locations at Franklin Square, Hauppauge, New York City, Albany, Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Binghamton, Newburgh, Utica, Plattsburgh, Pomona, and Jamestown.

Make sure you check the exam schedule at the NYS Licensing Services website. Their schedule is updated every January and July.

You’ll need to bring a government-issued ID to the exam center. It must have your photo and your signature – for example, driver’s license, U.S passport, Certificate of U.S citizenship.

There will be a $15 examination fee. Once again, you could pay by check, money order, or credit card.

How many questions are on the New York notary public exam? and how long is the NYS Notary exam?

New York notary exam writing

The notary exam consists of 40 questions. They are in multiple-choice format and you’ll have one hour to write it. 

The required passing score is 70.

What is on the NYS Notary exam?

The exam topics include law, general terms and information related to the duties and functions of a notary public.

One way to prepare for the exam is to read over the New York Notary Public License Law, which I will talk more later in this post. 

How will I know the result of my exam?

The result will be mailed to you. Keep in mind that they do not give out results over the phone, so don’t bother calling them about it.

Rather than giving you a numeric score, it will be indicated as either “passed” or fail. The result is only valid for two years.

Step 3: Complete the Notary Public Application

You need to fill out the Notary Public Application (form #DOS-0033-f-a). The questions on the application are pretty strict forward—for example, your name, business address, background info. 

There is a $60 application fee. You can write a cheque or money order payable to the Department of State. You can also paid by credit card by filling out the authorization form.

There is an “oath of office” section in the application. You must sign it in the presence of another Notary Public. You could find one through online searching, but make sure that their license is active in the NY Licensee database

Once you have all the required documents, you may mail them to:

  • New York State, Department of State, Division of Licensing Services
    Notary Public, P.O. BOX 22065
    Albany, NY 12201-2065

Step 4: Receive the notary public identification card

New York notary public identification card

Once everything is in good standing, you will receive the notary public commission packet. 

After the New York Notary Commission receives your application, it typically takes them 4-6 weeks of processing them.

After you receive the certificate, it’s better to review and make sure all the details are correct. (e.g., your name, county of residence, commission dates).

Step 5: Get the notary business supplies

Notarize documents with a standardized seal

New York Notarized Public Seal

Although it is not necessary to get an embosser or stamp-type seal for notarization in the New York State, you must include specific info in every document. Therefore, it could make sense to get a stamp so you won’t leave out the required details.

You may purchase the notary seal from office supplies store. If you do, then they usually would require a copy of your notary public ID card.

But make sure that their seal would meet the New York Department of State requirement.

Seal

The laws of the State of New York do not require the use of seals by
notaries public. If a seal is used, it should sufficiently identify the notary
public, his authority and jurisdiction. It is the opinion of the Department of State that the only inscription required is the name of the notary and the words “Notary Public for the State of New York.”

Quote from NYS Notary Public License Law

Maintain a good record of business practice

New York Notary Public Business Journal

So far, I could not find any law that requires you to keep a business journal, but maintaining a detailed book of record is an essential part of good business practice.

Should there be any confusion or disagreement in the future, your record could act as proof that you have taken reasonable steps to identify the signer of a document.

It’s better to use a permanently bound journal because their pages are more difficult to remove or lose than loose-leaf pages.

You may find it at stationery, office supply stores, or through notary organizations. You should record the list notarial acts in chronological order.

In your notary journal, it is better to take note of:

  • When was the date of the notarial act?
  • What had been done?
  • What are the documents involved?
  • Who is the person whose signature was notarized, and what is their address?
  • The list of fees received
  • A note section where you could add personal annotations

You must keep both the seal and journal in a locked and secured area, where only you have direct and exclusive control of it. (e.g. a locked drawer or cabinet.)

Would you like to learn how to make $75 to $200 per signing appointment? Check out this loan signing training program from Mark Wills. (**) He is one of the highest producing notary loan signing agents in the country.

How much can you make as a notary signing agent in New York?

How much can you make as a notary signing agent in New York?

The average Notary Signing Agent salary in New York is $40,211. It typically falls between the range $39,282 and $51,147. (+)

(+) Source: Salary.com – April 27, 2020

Can you make over $10,000/month as a notary loan signing agent? Be sure to check out our notary earning guide. You’ll find a case study where a loan signing agent has built her business to such a successful figure.

Is there demand for notary loan signing agent in New York?

As long as people are obtaining mortgages or refinancing their homes, there would be a demand for notary loan signing agents in New York.

All originated mortgages in New York

YEARRECORDS
2017236,499
2016246,292
2015228,054
2014198,817
2013271,829
2012285,106
2011238,554
2010252,729
2009281,652
2008252,826
2007398,639

Source: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) (May 28, 2020)

Furthermore, some states are “Attorney states,” which means only an attorney can handle the closing paperwork. Whereas, others are “Escrow States” where a loan signing agent can do the work.

According to the First American Title, New York is a not an “Attorney State,” which is good news if you are interested in starting a notary loan signing business.   

What education do you need to become a New York notary public?

What education do you need to become a New York notary public?

There is no official education requirement to become a notary public in the New York State. However, it would be extremely helpful to learn about the proper notary act.

But a good place to learn about this profession is by reading the New York Notary Public License Law. It is a 17 pages guide published by the Department of State, Division of Licensing Services.

This guide will cover the following topics:

  • APPOINTMENT AND QUALIFICATIONS EXECUTIVE LAW
  • PUBLIC OFFICERS LAW
  • COUNTY LAW
  • MISCELLANEOUS
  • POWERS AND DUTIES EXECUTIVE LAW
  • REAL PROPERTY LAW
  • SPECIAL NOTE
  • RESTRICTIONS AND VIOLATIONS JUDICIARY LAW
  • PUBLIC OFFICERS LAW
  • EXECUTIVE LAW
  • PENAL LAW

I’ll leave a link of this handbook in the reference section at the end of this post.

Is there a exam to become a notary in New York?

Yes, there is a exam to become a notary public in New York. The notary exam consists of 40 multiple-choice questions, and you’ll have 60 minutes to write it. The required passing score is 70.

How much does it cost to become a notary in New York?

How much does it cost to become a notary in New York?

It would cost approximately $107 to become a notary in New York.

Here’s the breakdown: 

  • Application fee – $60
  • Notary exam fee – $15
  • Professional stamp- $17
  • Notary Journal – $15

There could be other expenses involved, such as E&O insurance, travel expenses, and other business supplies.

How long does it take to become a notary signing agent in New York?

How long does it take to become a notary signing agent in New York?

Assume all required documents and payment are in good order, then it would take around 4-6 weeks to to become a notary loan signing agent in New York.

Can a felon be a notary loan signing agent in New York?

Having a conviction for a felony may impact the application to become a notary loan signing agent in New York. The New York Department of State needs to make sure that you are a person with credibility, truthfulness, and integrity to fulfill the responsibilities of the position.

On the application, there are questions about any felony record or professional misconduct. If there had been such incident, then you would need to submit further documentation about it – for example, a copy of the accusatory instrument indictment, criminal information or complaint

But having a felony does not necessarily mean your application will automatically be declined. It depends on the severity and nature of the conviction. The Department of State would review it on a case-by-case basis. 

Before you submit the application and write the exam, you may contact the NYS Department of State for further clarification.

How to renew notary in New York?

How to renew notary in New York?

The NYS Department of State will mail you the renewal application around three months before your notary public commission expires. Instructions could be found in the mailing.

After you complete the renewal application, you will need to send it to the County Clerk along with the $60 fee.

However, if you did not receive a renewal form, you may email the Division of Licensing Services at [email protected] and request for one. In the email, you must let them know your full name, mailing address, commission ID number, and commission expiration date.

Can I notarize for a family member in New York?

You must not notarize any documents where you have any financial or beneficial interest in the transaction. Therefore, notarizing a document for any family member could call into question, and such practice should be avoided.

I have more questions about being a notary loan signing agent in New York, where could I obtain more details?

You may contact the New York Department of State,

  • Division of Licensing Services, Notary Public P.O. BOX 22065, Albany, NY 12201-2065
  • (518) 474-4429
  • [email protected]

Disclaimer: The information in this post is for general information only, and not intend to provide any advice. They are subjected to change without any notice, and not guaranteed to be error-free.

(**) Affiliate Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you. Our website, RealEstateCareerHQ.com, will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking on the link. Please understand that we include them based on our experience or the research on these companies or products, and we recommend them because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions we make if you decide to buy something through the links. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals.

Reference:

  • First American Title- Your Guide to Real Estate Customs by State (Source
  • New York Department of State, Division of Licensing Services – Notary Public (Source)
  • New York Notary Public License Law (Source)
  • Salary.com – Notary Signing Agent Salary in New York (Source)
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) (Source)

Jacob Coleman

Jacob is a content writer and a real estate investor. He has experience working with different real estate professionals throughout the years. (i.e., appraisers, real estate agents, property managers, home inspectors.) In order to build a career you love, Jacob believes not only you need a thorough understanding about the profession, but you also have to find out what type of jobs could match your personality, lifestyle and expectation.

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