Stay Organized as a Mobile Notary

Sue Hope – Owner – LavaTurtle Software Inc. – NotaryAssist

I have been an active mobile notary in California for over twenty years and cannot remember a time when there was more of a demand for what we do than now.

As a result, tracking things like appointments, mileage, income, and expenses has become more important than ever.

Trying to manually manage your mobile notary businesses using calculators, spreadsheets, shoe boxes of receipts, and paper invoices is very time consuming and inefficient. Come tax-time it can often leave you feeling overwhelmed. For me, I felt buried in paperwork, and always behind on my outstanding invoices and expenses.

This is what led to the release of NotaryAssist in 2007, the first all-in-one software platform for managing the mobile notary business.

Here, I would like to discuss how utilizing an all-in-one software solution, like NotaryAssist, can help keep your business more organized and running smoothly.

Tracking Appointments

As a mobile notary, for each appointment, there are many data points that can be tracked: date, time, location, signers, mileage, number of notarial acts, notes, and so on.

The more information that you can save with each appointment, the more you can monitor the health of your business and help maximize your savings at tax time. With NotaryAssist, you can use a spreadsheet or calendar view to manage your appointments, plus utilize the dashboard and reports to stay on top of how your business is doing.

Being on the go as a mobile notary, it is key to have these appointments in the calendar on your smart device. NotaryAssist does this by automatically pushing your appointments to your smart device. Allowing you to always know when you are available.

Income and Payments

Keeping track of how much income you have received and how much you are owed can become a job in and of itself! Each customer is unique—some require invoices while some will not, some will pay instantly while others will pay in 30, 45, 60, or 90 days.

NotaryAssist provides invoice generation and powerful filters to keep track of who owes you, how much they owe, and how many days an outstanding payment is, in a few simple clicks.

Expenses and Mileage

From printer ink, paper & pens to hand sanitizer, gloves & masks, expenses for running a mobile notary business add up quickly. Maintaining diligent records of expenses will pay off.

NotaryAssist categorizes and tracks all of your expenses whether they are a one-time expense or recurring. At tax-time, run the expense report for a categorized break-down of your year-end expense totals.

Typically, one of the biggest write-offs for a mobile notary is mileage. Any business miles, like those spent driving to appointments or going to FedEx/UPS to mail documents, are tax-deductible.

NotaryAssist allows for many personalized settings to meet the needs that are unique to your mobile notary business. When tracking mileage, for example, NotaryAssist can auto-calculate mileage, allow you to enter total miles driven, or use the odometer to odometer calculation to determine miles driven per appointment.

Reporting and Taxes

Saving detailed records of the number of notarial acts performed, mileage, and other expenses, can help with significant tax savings each year.

Probably the top question we get asked is, “Do notaries receive tax benefits and if so, how does that work?”.

Great question! The short answer is yes!

The amount charged by a Notary Public for a notarial act is exempt from self-employment tax—in the state of California, this is a maximum of $15 per signature.

NotaryAssist tracks the number of notarial acts you have performed at each appointment and auto-calculates your self-employment tax exemption per appointment. At tax time, simply run the Tax Report for a complete breakdown of your Schedule C and Schedule SE totals. Our customers always tell us how much their tax professionals love our reports and how much time NotaryAssist saves them during tax season!

Since the release in 2007, NotaryAssist has been utilized by thousands of notaries across the US. It has helped them track millions of appointments, notarial acts, and expenses with ease, accuracy, and efficiency.

My name is Sue Hope, owner of NotaryAssist. I hope that sharing a little about my background and how I struggled to manage my mobile notary business when I first started, will help reveal the value in using an all-in-one platform, like NotaryAssist, to maximize your business management efficiency.

I invite you to visit our website www.notaryassist.com for a risk-free, no credit card needed, free 30-day trial, and see if NotaryAssist is right for you!

Stay updated with our current sales, giveaways, and notary tips at our Instagram: @notaryassist.

Click here to read post on CalNotaries website>

10 Tips from NotaryAssist – #NotaryTip

We have been asked to share our experiences/insights with our users and all Professional Notaries Public out there!

Below are some of our favorite tips to date.  You can follow our tips on Twitter and LinkedIn as well.  Enjoy!

*Have multiple pens in BOTH Blue and Black ink!  You never know what the document will require and you don’t want to lose time while the signer(s) look for pens!

*Carry baby wipes or wet naps in your Notary bag to remove the ink from your signers thumb after you get their print.  A nice professional gesture!

*Track your Mileage not only to and from your signing appointments, but to the office supply store, document drop off location and escrow offices!!  All those miles driven are business miles!!

* Confirm Location, Date and Time of your appointment with signer(s) PLUS make sure that someone else knows where you are and approximate time of completion! #SAFETY  Be safe out there!!

*You work HARD for your money!!  Make sure that you know your State’s Notarial Act Fee!!  Then make sure you track all of your Notarial Acts!!  Your income on Notarial Acts is Self Employment Tax Exempt!!

*Print extra forms for signings that you do all the time, But ALSO for the rare cases + the instructions how to use them!  That way you are always prepared for not only Acknowledgements and Jurats but for Special Witnesses and Sign by Mark clients!

*Stay cool and ready for the long days on the road!  Keep a small cooler with you in your car!  Keeps your drinks cold, food on hand and saves you money by not eating out all the time!

*Make a rule for yourself never to have liquid at the signing table.  Signers have the nicest intentions when you go to there house or if you are at an escrow office, almost always someone will offer you a drink.  Kindly say no – you don’t want to get 3/4 through a signing only to have all your work and original documents ruined by a liquid spill!!  It may still happen as the signer themselves may have liquid at the signing table, that is why you always have a 2nd set ready to go, but at least you have reduced the chances 🙂

*Grow your business by not being afraid to ask for referrals!  Ask your Dr., D.D.S., Barber/Stylist or anyone you give business too!  We all help each other!

*Cold/Flu Season!  Keep on your game – Wash your hands often!  We shake hands all day long – We share pens – We are in close proximity to our signers.  We can’t stop every germ, but we can do our part to keep ourselves and our signers healthy!  Add Spraying down your pens with Lysol at the end of each day!

We hope that these few tips help you and your business grow!  Look for more tips coming soon!

Notary Public Self Employment Tax Exemption

It is that time of year again!  Time to gather all your tax information for 2015 to report earnings to the IRS.

We are asked every year about self employment tax for the professional Notary Public.  Here is the link to the IRS webpage and information about self employment tax.   We hope this link and information helps every professional Notary file their taxes.

https://www.irs.gov/publications/p334/ch10.html

“Income and Losses Not Included in Net Earnings From Self-Employment”

Fees received for services performed as a notary public. If you had no other income subject to SE tax, enter “Exempt—Notary” on Form 1040, line 57. Do not file Schedule SE. However, if you had other earnings of $400 or more subject to SE tax, enter “Exempt—Notary” and the amount of your net profit as a notary public from Schedule C or Schedule C-EZ on the dotted line to the left of Schedule SE, line 3. Subtract that amount from the total of lines 1a, 1b, and 2, and enter the result on line 3. ……”

The partial section above is directly from the IRS.gov webpage.  NotaryAssist is not a licensed tax authority.  Please seek the advise of a tax professional for further information about self employment taxes and your specific tax needs.

New Website Launched!

Contact:
Sue Hope, Co-Owner and Founder
NotaryAssist, LavaTurtle Software, Inc.
949-713-3570
support@notaryassist.com

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LEADING NOTARY SOFTWARE BRAND LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE

NotaryAssist Announces Advanced Notary Accounting Application with User-friendly Website

Orange County, CA, August 21, 2015–LavaTurtle Software, Inc., launched a new and improved website this week for its Notary business management software, NotaryAssist. The Orange County-based software company first developed and introduced a desktop version of NotaryAssist in 2007 after working closely with Notary professionals to decipher their business needs and challenges. Since then, the industry-leading Notary program has evolved into a web-based, intuitive application that can be accessed from any device—laptop, desktop, or Smartphone, MAC or PC.

“We decided it was time to introduce a more advanced, user-friendly version of our website to keep up with our product,” said Sue Hope, Co-Owner and Founder of NotaryAssist. “We are so proud of the success we’ve had and so pleased to serve Notary professionals around the United States with their businesses. I, myself, began my career as a Notary, so I feel uniquely qualified to help other Notaries manage their time and money. I understand their business challenges and needs, and I want to help.”

The Notary accounting tool manages Notary businesses from top to bottom with an advanced, secure web-based program. Its features are built for Notaries to stay organized and tax-time ready, including an accounting feature that addresses the unique tax benefits given only to Notaries. The program allows customers to sync with their Smartphone calendars, auto-calculate mileage, manage appointments, and print reports daily, weekly or monthly. Here are some of the many features:

  • View and organize business appointments and customer information
  • Data push to a Smartphone calendar and get turn-by-turn directions
  • Generate reports (daily, monthly or yearly) and during tax season
  • Track mileage (odometer-to-odometer or auto-calculate)
  • Manage expenses and invoices

“The feedback we receive from our customers is motivating and very positive,” said Hope. “We try to keep things personalized, user-friendly and easily accessible, including our customer support. Our customers know they are valued and that we will do everything we can to meet their business needs.”

LavaTurtle Software, Inc., located in Orange County, California, first launched in 2007. The new website is www.NotaryAssist.com. For more information, please contact Sue Hope at (949) 713-3570.