We’ve all seen the television ads that scare you into buying their “protection service” by telling you that your property could be taken without your knowledge. They go so far as to tell you that you could be put out of your home with little notice and there is nothing you can do about it.
We’ve talked to title company folks about this, and we are all agreed that it is an unlikely scenario without some extremely talented people well-orchestrated in their endeavors taking advantage of someone paying no attention to things in their life.
There is, however, always the doubt that is created by the highly emotional ads we are seeing repeatedly. So, what can one do about it besides subscribe to their service? One thing you can do is check your local county recorder’s office for things recorded in your name. You can go online to their website and plug in your name.
You will see all things recorded in your name including your acquisition deed, a deed of trust if you have a loan, your homestead if you recorded it, etc. It is there that you would see a phony deed transferring the property from you to a third party. This is the service the advertising company is trying to sell you. You can do it yourself as described above and save the money.
There is a better way to go these days in many of our local counties. Several local counties are offering a recording notification service that allows members of the public to receive an email alert whenever a document is recorded in the county involving your property. It is a courtesy service without guarantee, but it should serve you well as a first line of defense and in helping you sleep at night. You can still do your own checking once in a while.
The local counties that offer the service and their contact information are:
• Douglas County: https://acclaim.douglasnv.us/PublicRecordsNotificationWeb/
• Washoe County: https://RNS.washoecounty.us/subscribe
• Carson City: https://landmark.carson.org/LandmarkWeb/FraudAlert
• Lyon County: https://records.lyon-county.org/recorderweb/fraudGuard/disclaimerPage
• Churchill County: https://landmark.churchillcounty.org/LandmarkWeb/FraudAlert
Other counties may be offering the service soon. You might check with them if you own property in another Nevada county.
When you sign up for the service you will be asked your name including variations of your name. You will be able to enter up to five properties to monitor. The properties will be identified by the assessor’s parcel number of each property, not the address. If you receive an alert from the system, you will be given a document number, so you know exactly what you are looking for when you follow up to see what it is they are referencing.
The county notification service is similar to the commercial service that you see on television in that it doesn’t prevent the recording from happening, it only tells you after it has happened. The benefit of both is that you can act before too much time passes and the perpetrator of the fraud is able to sell the property to a third party. If you are a victim of document fraud the recorder’s office advises you to contact local law enforcement.
In this day and age of computers and internet many bad things can be done by people far away from here. You must be aware and diligent to protect your bank accounts, personal correspondence, and now your real estate holdings. Don’t be laggard in your efforts to protect your assets, sign up for a notification service today and rest easy.
When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your Real Estate needs… Experience is Priceless! Jim Valentine, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-3704. firstname.lastname@example.org.
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