Learn which government offices have the land records you need
Assessors determine the value of properties and parcels in order to assess property taxes. The Assessor's Office maintains current data on every property in the district, including ownership information, maps of property lines, inventories of parcels and structures, and the value of all the property in the jurisdiction. Assessors may also maintain records from on-site inspections and value assessments for construction or improvements. Many Assessor's Offices make their land records available online.
Building Departments develop and enforce building codes to ensure the construction of safe buildings. The Building Department maintains land records on design plans for construction and renovation projects in order to enforce building codes. Building Departments also have land records on additions and new construction, current structures on any parcel, property lines, and a property's compliance with building codes. Many Building Departments provide online databases to access land records.
Clerks file documents and preserve municipal records in order to maintain an archive for their municipality. These documents, including land records, are open to the public. The Clerk's Office contains a number of different types of land records, including registered land, property transactions, real estate excise taxes, and property maps. They also have records on deeds, mortgages, and liens on properties. Many Clerk's Offices make their land records available to the public online.
Recorders of Deeds collect public records, primarily documents related to property, and make them available to the public. The Office of the Recorder of Deeds maintains records on land transactions within its jurisdiction, including deeds, mortgages, easements, and tax liens. The office may also contain property and parcel surveys, maps of property lines, and data on a property's selling prices and history. Many Recorders of Deeds provide online access to their land records.
Town Halls and City Halls are the chief administrative office that runs a town or city. The Town or City Hall maintains records related to the locality, including land records. These records include property taxes, property value assessments, and land transactions, as well as property sales and transfers. Town and City Halls also maintain records on municipal and zoning boundaries. Many Town and City Halls provide online access to their land records.
Treasurers and Tax Collectors are responsible for the collection of property tax revenue. The Office of the Treasurer and Tax Collector maintains current data on every parcel in the district, as well as a number of other types of land records. These records include lists of sold parcels, property tax assessments, defaults on property taxes, and property values. The Treasurer and Tax Collector may also maintain information on property auctions and prior liens or foreclosures on a property. Many Treasurers and Tax Collectors provide online databases to access land records.