How to Research a Property Title. Generally, you need to research a property title if you are purchasing a home, a parcel of land or a foreclosure property. That used to mean spending hours flipping through pages and pages of record books to find the information. Now it is a mere mouse click away. Read on to learn how to research a property title.
Know the street address, the assessor's parcel number or legal description, the city and state of the property whose title you want to research. Sometimes the property owner's name is required to perform a search.
Take that information to the Recorder's Office or the Treasurer's office in your city or county of residence. Generally, they are located in the county office building.
Ask for help researching a property title. In most cases you will be instructed on how to use the county's abstract system, which gives a property's ownership and debt histories. If your county's Recorder or Treasurer's Office has a website, you may be able to conduct your research online.
Research a property title online by using a title search company. For a nominal fee you receive information, such as the current property owner, the method of conveyance used for transferring, existing mortgages, outstanding liens or judgments against the property, tax information, title holder, record of deeds and refinances.
When entering property information, do not use abbreviations or apartment/unit numbers. Some property title reports may not provide the most up-to-date information. Property searches are confidential. Residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural property titles can be researched. Turnaround time to generate your online report is one to two days.