Property Search District of Columbia
Searching for property records in the state of District of Columbia
Property records can tell you a lot more than just the name of the owner of a piece of real estate in the state of District of Columbia. Of course, this obvious reason is one of the main ones that people choose to use the search facilities at their disposal to check for property records, but you can also use real estate documents to work out which is the best area to buy a house, to figure out what an area of local land has been bought for and even to try and track down lost or missing friends and relatives. People have even been known to use property records to check up on new partners, making sure they are who they say they are, and that they have no hidden assets before getting married.
Property records in the state of District of Columbia are maintained by the County Recorder for your particular area, as they are throughout the US. If a piece of real estate is sold or changes hands, it has to be recorded here, along with, in many cases, the price that was agreed upon for the deal. Not only is this useful if you are trying to find out just who owns that large unused piece of land in District of Columbia, but it can also be very helpful for you to work out which areas in the state of District of Columbia you can afford to buy a new home in, by comparing and contrasting the values of recent sales. Buying a house is a huge decision, and should not be undertaken without first carrying out lots of research; while real estate agents may tell you they know everything about the local market in District of Columbia, it is also a good idea to do your own investigation! Of course, the local press is also a good source of information on property prices, and many newspapers in District of Columbia have their own real estate supplements.
If you are using property records for other reasons, perhaps for family history research, to check up on the financial background of a new partner or to try and track down a missing loved-one by following the trail of properties they have owned over the years, then you will need to look at specific property records that are maintained in District of Columbia by the County Recorder’s office. If you are searching for someone in particular and you have a previous address for them, you can then find out what date that property was sold and search for other property records about that time detailing the address of the property they then bought. It could be possible to track someone over a period of years through their different addresses in the state of District of Columbia. This all depends on the person you are trying to find being a house-buyer, rather than a renter. Similarly, you can search for your ancestors’ names in property records in District of Columbia and see what real estate they bought or sold decades or even centuries ago. Many land records in the US go back hundreds of years to when initial plots were sold to farmers, so property records could turn out to be a great way of tracking down what your relatives were doing, and where, in the early 20th century or even before that.
As well as simply heading down to the County Recorder’s office to wade through their old files, many of these offices in the state of District of Columbia have computerized many of their documents, making it easier for genealogists and other researchers to find what they are looking for. Staff at these offices can even carry out searches on your behalf if you live outside of the state of District of Columbia, but want to investigate older or even more recent property records in the region. You would have to make the request by mail or email and there would also be a standard fee to pay. In many cases, you may have to wait some time for your results, as the staff at the County Recorder’s office obviously has other things to be done.
If time is of the essence, or you simply don’t want to wait for the information you are looking for, there are commercial websites out there that allow you to search through data concerning property records that has been collected from all over the state of District of Columbia, as well from all over the US. By inputting what information you have, these search sites will return “hits” on the names and previous addresses. If this list of properties is all that you need, many of these commercial sites will not charge a fee. It is only if you want to see the more detailed information on property records in the state of District of Columbia that you may be asked to pay. If you have to pay up front and the search produces no hits, many of these sites will refund your money.