County land records now searchable online

DeKALB – A system that makes DeKalb County land records available online recently launched through the DeKalb County clerk and recorder’s office.

County clerk John Acardo and his staff have been testing the system with real estate professionals and property title searchers since May. The 3.5 million land-record images are now available to the public 24/7.

“For the homeowners or property owners, this is an essential tool to make sure your title record is cleared,” Acardo said. 

People can use the system to see if they have any liens on their property and to fight against property fraud, one of the fastest-growing crimes in the United States, Acardo said. The recorder’s office is the legal authority to hold the title record for individual property, he said. The office is used by lenders and title companies to check if a title is cleared. 

“You check your credit score, you check your background,” he said. “You should also check the title to your home.” 

One feature people can use to keep track of their land records is the office’s property watch system. It’s a free service and people who sign up can be notified immediately if there is a lien, fraud or mortgage on their property, Acardo said.

The two-year project to put the land records online cost almost $62,000, but those costs were not paid by taxpayers, Acardo said. All the costs were paid out of an Automation Fund, which earmarks fees for services provided by the office to enhance technology. 

The most expensive part of the project was redacting sensitive personal information from the land records, such as social security numbers and bank information. Ultimately, the system is expected to save the office about $30,000 annually by reducing the amount of time staff spends researching land records.

Land records from 1837 through 1906 and 1945 to the present are online. Acardo said he hopes by the end of the year the office will index the records between 1906 and 1945.

On the Web

To learn more about the online records system or register to view the documents online, visit http://lrs.dekalbrecorder.com/.

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