Whether you’re an agent , investor or just looking to buy your next home or investment property, if a property isn’t (yet) on the market, contacting the current property owner is the best way to gather information. But to do so, you need their contact information.
Property records are housed in local government offices, such as your local county clerk’s office. Every property record has the property’s address, most recent selling price, parcel number, and all previous owners’ information. If you’re performing your own search online, you’ll need to know the approximate location of the property, such as city or county. These types of records aren’t housed in a nationwide database. There are a few items you’ll need to perform a proper search, such as:
- Name of property owner
- Address of property
- County where the property is located
Searching Online Records
Find the website for the county clerk or assessor for the location of the property. You may need to create an account to perform searches.
Locate the portion of the site dedicated to property records. You may have to click to accept a disclaimer about the accuracy of some information.
If you have the owner’s name, enter as directed. Some clerk sites require last name first. Once you’ve entered all the information you have, click Search.
A page will return all the results under that name for that county. There may be several similar names or addresses depending on the size of the county you’re searching. If a person’s name is on the title for more than just the property you’re researching, you’ll find those properties also.
You’ll be able to search through property values, taxation information, and other identifying details. For properties that are owned by more than one individual, you only need one of the owner’s names to find the property.
Searching commercial real estate? Take note – some individuals place their properties in a limited liability company (LLC). This vastly reduces the amount of information publicly available. Instead of the owner’s name, each property is listed in the name of the LLC. You won’t easily find a phone number or email that goes directly to an owner in these cases.
Searching in Person
If you’d rather due your diligence in person, simply visit the physical office of the county’s clerk or assessor. Remember – wherever the property is located, that is the county you’ll have to visit.
Tell the individual assisting you that you’re looking for a property owner’s phone number. There may be forms you’ll need to fill out – this all depends on each location. The form may ask for your name and the reason you’re performing the request.
Remember, all properties have taxes assessed annually. If you visit the county’s tax assessor’s office, they’ll have the information you need, such as tax records for the property, if taxes are owed, and the most current contact information available to the office.
In some locations, there may be fees associated with requesting this information.
If you’re unsure of the property’s address, you can always visit in-person or use a maps service like Google Maps to find cross streets or other landmarks that can help you pinpoint the address. Some services, like ProspectNow, have a map function built in just for this reason.
Using an appraiser’s services
You can also find a property owner’s phone number at the property appraiser’s website or office in the county the property’s located in. Unless you’re using ProspectNow, it can be beneficial to physically visit the appraiser’s office, as they can sometimes help you find more information for properties than what’s available online.
ProspectNow offers all the above information in one spot, including statistics on which owners of off-market properties are most likely to sell in the near future. Simply input the information you have, and we’ll provide the details you don’t.
Looking for a property to purchase? Are you a broker who wants to close more sales? We’ve been helping investors, sellers, and real estate brokers since 2008. ProspectNow offers all the information you need on properties in your area and around the nation.