Meadville Tribune

Local News

July 16, 2014

County cautions resident on deed solicitation notices

MEADVILLE — It looks like an official government notice saying “RECORDED DEED NOTICE,” but it’s actually a solicitation from a private company in California.

Deborah Curry, Crawford County’s Recorder of Deeds, and Joseph Galbo III, the county’s chief assessor, both are cautioning residents about the notices since the same deed and assessment information that would be contained in the profile the company is charging $83 for is available at Crawford County Courthouse for less than $5 for the average homeowner.

Curry and Galbo said their respective offices at the courthouse have received several inquiries from county property owners about the notice from Record Transfer Services of Westlake Village, Calif.

“We’ve received several calls about it as well as people stopping in and asking about it,” Curry said of the notices. Inquiries from the public started the week of July 6, she said.

The notice from Record Transfer Services does state it isn’t associated with any government agency. It also points out copies of a deed are available from the county recorder’s office in the county where the property is located.

The notice offers a copy of the owner’s current grant deed and property assessment profile for $83. However, copying costs in the Recorder of Deeds and Assessment offices are 50 cents per page.

Curry said most property deeds run two to four pages in length, while Galbo said most assessment information is only one or two pages, making the total cost to the average property owner about $3 plus tax.

Curry also makes property information available online via the county’s website — crawfordcountypa.net. People may click on the land/property link at the top of the county’s home page to get to Register & Recorder’s link. Once on the Register & Recorder’s page, click on “Online Land Record Search.”

The maximum charge for obtaining Crawford County property records online is $5.

Galbo said assessment information also is available online through the Geographic Information Services, or GIS link on the county’s website. The GIS link is down temporarily while the information is transferred to a new computer server, Galbo said.

Galbo said he hopes the public isn’t fooled by the mailed notices.

“This is all the same information that’s readily available at the courthouse,” Galbo said.

Regular Crawford County Courthouse hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The courthouse is located at 903 Diamond Park, Meadville.

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