Property Records

Every county in the United States has an official in charge of appraising a real estate property. Known as the county tax assessor, this official is responsible for keeping tax records and other relevant records regarding a landed property. Likewise, the recorder is responsible for maintaining title deeds on landed properties within a local jurisdiction. He/she is also known as the register of deeds or the commissioner of deeds depending on the county. These county officials maintain property records that are public information and accessible to interested members of the public.

The information you can glean from a property record includes:

  • The date of purchase
  • Taxable value
  • Assessed value
  • Dimensions
  • Buyer information
  • Seller’s information
  • Parcel number
  • Parcel size
  • Address
  • Tax exemption
  • Liens/Mortgages
  • Easement

To inspect a property record, visit the office of the assessor where the property is located. Administrative staff will require descriptive information on the property of interest and charge fees for providing copies of the property records. If you want them certified, you must pay additional fees. Property records are also available online, usually on the county’s website. Where a property is government-owned, you can find relevant information on the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website. Still, you can access the same property records from independent service providers such as Realtor and Trulia.