The Best Journals for Notaries

Oct 25, 2022

You can listen to the audio version of this blog on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/uHk-hw0IvQI

Think about the three basic tools you must have for every Notary appointment. I am not talking about all the things we consider a best practice to carry with you, or the fun office supplies we carry to make us more efficient or professional, Just the basics. 

What must you have to perform your duties as a Notary Public?

  • Your Notary Seal
  • A Pen
  • The Notary Journal (even if your state doesn’t require it-come on, don’t get me started)
  • Ink pad for fingerprints (if you’re in a state that requires it-okay, you get four things)

I remember being at the end of 14 or 15 hour days, at appointment number ten or eleven, exhausted, and just plain refusing to carry my Notary bag across even one more threshold. I’d grab three blue pens, my stamp, and my journal, and keep my fingers crossed that everything went smooth and easy for that appointment. I mean, worst case scenario, I may have to run out to my car for a jurat or something, but after a long day, it was worth the risk. 

You have three (or four, California, et al) essential tools for your business. That means your journal accounts for approximately 33% of your necessary supplies. And, depending on which state you’re in (ahem, California), journaling may account for 33% of your time in an appointment. It’s important to choose a journal that helps you be efficient.

Time is money. 

Here are my three favorite journals for notaries. 

First up, the Notary eJournal by Jurat, inc. 

On a personal level, I am disappointed that the two states I’ve lived in as a Notary Public restrict the use of an electronic journal (2 of 4 states that do so). If I could have started with an electronic notary journal, I would have. 

And even though Arizona and Washington don’t allow them, nearly every other state DOES allow an electronic notary journal (Nevada, Missouri, Arizona, and Washington do not). 

If you’re brand new to the notary world, get this journal! 

Starting with a high-tech version of the journal of notarial acts will put you leaps and bounds above the rest of us. And the Notary eJournal's creator, Nick Colvill, is incredibly responsive to feedback and suggestions. This journal even has the capacity to capture digital fingerprints!

Make no mistake, notaries. Just because we’re not at 100% adoption of an electronic journal right now, doesn’t mean it’s not coming. Oh, it’s coming. In fact, my guess is, in ten years, notaries are going to look back on paper journals kind of like we look at telephone land lines now. 

All that said, I totally get the desire for a paper journal too. 

And, sometimes you’re restricted to that by law. (like I am)

Whether legally obligated, or simply your preference, I have two favorite paper journals, you won’t want to miss. 

First up, by Clyde Heppner, the Integrity Journal

First off, Clyde is awesome. Did you know he published a book (non-notary related) and is an amazing photographer? 

On top of that, he created the most popular notary journal for loan signing agents since sliced bread (and that might actually be a historical fact). 

Second up, and definitely equal, is Kim Flanagan’s Notary Allies journal

Okay, paper freaks. My fellow papyrophiliacs, Kim has done it. For those of you that prefer a more…luxury appeal, Kim’s journal features thick 80# paper that you can’t help but keep touching…and smelling (too freaky?). 

It’s good stuff.

And the best part? It’s color! You’ll love the highlighted signature areas and shaded boxes. 

Choose what is right for you. Choose wisely, and stretch your comfort zone-whether it is tech or price point, or simply something new, your journal is your BFF, as Laura Biewer puts it. 

And here’s something interesting to know:

In nearly every state, you can “retire” a notary journal at any time and start a new & different journal. That means you DO NOT have to wait to fill a journal. If you don’t like what you have, stop!

End the unhappy journaling madness! 

And start a new journal that you love using. 

Afterall, it’s at least 33% of your business integrity. 

Bill Soroka is the founder of Notary Business Builder, an elite community of professional Notary entrepreneurs that are committed to building a successful business in any economy by leveraging authentic sharing technology and cultivating deeper relationships.

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