How to Find the History on a House for Free

By Jesse Strickland - Updated March 21, 2017
House in trees.

haunted house image by Aleksander from Fotolia.com

Property records are available and free to the public. These records are contained by the county's register of deeds office, county clerk's office or property appraiser's office depending on the municipality. You can find these records online for many counties, but in some rural areas, you might have to physically go to the office to sift through the files. The property records of an address include a sales history, owner information, current and former values, the size of the lot, number of bedrooms and bathrooms and other pertinent information.

Gather up as much information as you can about the address, including the zip code. If you know the block and lot codes, which a lot of municipalities use to quickly identify an address, that could also be helpful. Search the internet for "property records [your county]" to find out which office holds the records.

Go to the county office website where property records are filed. Navigate the website and see if they have an online database. If they offer online service, search for the property records associated with that address. Be aware that the online records may only go so far back.

Go to the physical office where the records are held. If the county doesn't offer an online database, or you are cannot find the records online, go to the local office. Ask the clerk to see the property records for a specific property. You may have to pay a small copy fee if you want paper copies.

About the Author

Jesse Strickland has been a professional writer since 2001. He has experience writing for websites, magazines, newspapers, television and schools on subjects including music, beauty and digital products. His work has appeared in "Shuffle Magazine," "Creative Loafing," "Independent Weekly" and at Neumo.net and Blogcritics.org. Strickland has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of North Carolina, Charlotte.

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