AFX Research, LLC

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Fast, Accurate, Certified Title Search Reports

Is it possible to get a free title search?

There are a variety of ways to get a title search report for free or cheap. Which method you choose depends on why you need the search.


If you are just trying to find out who currently owns a property, or get a rough idea of its value, there are a number of websites that will provide you with an electronic report for free or relatively cheaply (under $50). These reports are as accurate and complete as the database they are pulled from. Any report provided instantly is an electronic report.


If you need more extensive information such as a

chain of title history or it is important not to miss any items, such as liens and judgments, you will need directly to view the public records.


The good news is that, in most cities and counties, real estate records are public, meaning anyone can visit the office and retrieve the data or documents needed to create a title search report. In most cases the costs are copying fees.


On the down side, getting the information you are looking for from public records requires knowing how they are indexed, and how to read the documents and understand which ones are relevant and current.


Also, you may need to visit more than one location, such as the recorders office and the county courthouse, to get all the documents that affect your property. All of this can take a great deal of your time.

A typical county recorders office.

A typical county recorders office.


The Bottom Line


Instant free or cheap property reports are available from many online websites

  • search for "Free Title Search Report"
  • the information may not be complete or up-to-date
  • good for a quick "snap shot" if there is not a lot at stake


Full, accurate records are available for free (save copy costs) in most counties.

  • will require travel to the county office(s) and possibly several hours of your time
  • if completeness and accuracy are very important, consider using a professional abstractor
  • if you do the search yourself, first do research on how to find the relevant documents in your property's county

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