9 Ways to Find the Owner of a Property in 2024

Real Estate Investing5 min read

Proven strategies within!

JP Moses
JP Moses

Have you ever driven through a neighborhood you’re interested in investing in for your REI business and spotted the perfect property that isn’t in the best shape?

Maybe you’ve seen a house with a “For Rent” sign and perhaps there’s an out-of-town/absentee owner who’s ready to be done with tenants, termites, and toilets.

Well, if you want to look into those properties as possible deals, how do you find out who owns them?

That’s exactly what we’re going to show you today. Let’s get to it!

As an RE Investor, Why Do I Need to Know Who Owns a Property? 

If you find a property you’re interested in, you’ll have to do a little digging to find out who the owner is. 

Of course, you’ll have to work with the owner if you’re gonna try to scoop the property up as an REI deal.

And these 9 methods we’re about to share are usable for properties that are listed and those that aren’t!

Knowing how to find out who owns a property is an essential tool in real estate investing.

9 Ways to Find Out Who Owns a Property

#1 Local Assessor’s Office

An assessor is a local government official who evaluates the value of a property for local real estate tax purposes.

Naturally, a good starting point for how to find out who owns a house is to head to the county’s tax assessor office or website. With the address, the local tax assessor should have the name of the person or company who owns the property. Before heading down to the office, check the office’s website to see if that county has an online database to save you a trip.

By using this option for how to find out who owns a house, you can also see how much they pay in taxes and if there are any liens on the property for your investment research. This is a free option for how to find out who owns a house. Score!

#2 County Clerk/Recorder

Property ownership is public record, hooray! So, another way to find out who owns a house is to pay a visit to the county clerk’s office or website. This office keeps records of all property sales and defaults. 

You can use the information about the property — including how many times the house has changed ownership, for example — to your advantage. If it’s been sold 5 times in the past 5 years, that could signal problems with the property that can’t be seen from the street, tenant issues, landlord problems, or property management company challenges. That’s leverage, friend.

The county clerk’s office is another free resource for how to find out who owns a house. 

#3 Title Company

A title company’s bread and butter is keeping track of who owns a home. There might be a fee associated with this service, but a title company can also tell you about any debts, mortgages, and liens associated with the property. All super-useful info for an investor.

You might ask your fellow REIers or real estate agents for referrals to investor-friendly title companies. Working with those companies that understand what we do as investors is a huge plus.

#4 Real Estate Agent

If you’re working with real estate agents for your REI business, they should be able to you find out this critical info.

Besides researching public records about the property to learn who the owner is — like the methods listed above —, they may have additional ideas about how to find out who owns a house in their arsenal too. 

#5 Real Estate Attorney

Reaching out to a real estate attorney is another way to find out who owns a house — and just like an investor-friendly title company is best, the same goes for investor-friendly attorneys. 

Consulting an attorney is likely more costly than the other options, but you could offer them a deal: they help you find the owner and you use them to close the deal, which gives them a piece of the profit. That’s a win-win.

#6 Skip Trace

Skip-tracing is a process of finding a person’s whereabouts. This tactic is often used to hunt down folks with unpaid debts. But! We also use it for our REI business.

A skip tracing company can help you find the homeowner. This can be time-consuming, but if you’re having trouble tracking down the property owner using other methods, it may be the right next step in your search. 

There are some free services, but the accuracy of the information can be questionable. Paid services are also available. The downside is that you may pay a pretty penny for the information, and they still can’t guarantee accuracy or results. 

#7 Knock on the Door/Leave a Note

You can also do things the old-fashioned way and knock on the front door to see if anyone is home and willing to talk to you. The risk you run here is catching someone off guard and potentially turning them off to a deal. 

Leaving a note is another option. You can write a message introducing yourself and letting the homeowner know you’d be interested in buying their house if they want to sell. Leave your contact information so they can reach out to you. 

#8 Ask Neighbors 

If someone doesn’t answer the door, another way to learn who owns a house is to knock on neighbors’ doors and ask if they can share any info about the homeowner or the property’s history. 

This can be helpful intel for your research, but keep in mind that neighbors might not be interested in chatting, and it’s important to respect those boundaries. 

#9 Search Online 

Lastly, simply doing an online search can go a long way in finding out who owns a house. You can research this information on sites such as LexisNexis, 411.com, or Whitepages.com

Use these resources to track down the information you need to let the homeowner know you’re interested in buying their property. 

That’s a Wrap — REI Guide: How to Find Out Who Owns a House 

And that’s that on how to find out who owns a house! 

I hope you use these tools to your advantage to secure deals. 

Remember, even if a property is not listed and doesn’t have a “for sale” sign, doesn’t mean the owner wouldn’t be interested in a deal. Never hurts to present your offer. Be confident and respectful.

When you actly boldly using these methods on how to find out who owns a house, you may strike gold on the perfect investment property. 

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