A property deed acts as the documentation of the transfer of ownership from one party to another. Once the deed is completed, it should be recorded among the land records with the proper county’s clerk. Recording laws and requirements vary state to state. Recording requirements are uniform throughout the state of New York, though the recording fees and transfer taxes vary by county.
Deeds in New York must include the names and addresses of both the seller and the purchaser. In most situations, only the seller is required to sign the deed. All signatures must be original on a deed submitted for recording. The signatures must be notarized properly according to New York state requirements, using a standard certificate of acknowledgment. All deeds transferring real property must include a complete legal description of the property.
When submitting a deed to the county to be recorded, two forms are required. The first form is known as the TP-584 form, or the Combined Real Estate Form. This form requires the Social Security numbers of the sellers and the buyers. The second form is RP-5217, or the Equalization and Assessment Form. The first form discloses information about the parties involved in the transaction while the second pertains to information about the property.
Each county in New York assesses transfer taxes on deeds with a valuable consideration. Most counties classify this at a consideration of $500 or above. Although the fees vary by county, they are generally calculated by a dollar amount per $500 or $1,000 of the consideration. The transfer is also taxed at the state level. Counties often lump its tax and the state tax together. The county will then pay the state its portion of the transfer tax. High-value properties may be assessed an additional tax known at the “mansion tax” at 1 percent of the selling price.
When recording a deed within the five boroughs of New York City, except Staten Island, an automated online system can be used to calculate fees and generate the transfer forms. The Automated City Register Information System (ACRIS) is available free of charge. ACRIS also serves as a database for recorded documents from 1966 to the present. The public can search for deeds using the website. The Office of the City Register runs ACRIS and is also responsible for recording property transfer deeds for New York City. Deeds for properties on Staten Island are maintained by the Richmond County Clerk.