For most homeowners, their home is their most valuable asset. With real estate fraud on the rise, Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds, Lisa Brown, has launched a new Property Records Notification (PRN) system to alert homeowners any time a document pertaining to their specific property is recorded at the Oakland County Register of Deeds Office. The free service will notify property owners about potentially fraudulent activity such as forged deeds and bogus liens that have been filed on their property without their knowledge.
PRN is an enhancement to the Super Index, powered by Google and Xerox, which was launched in 2014 and is the first of its kind in the United States. The Super Index allows for millions of documents filed with Oakland County to become easily searchable by any piece of information contained within them. A homeowner can use his or her name, address, property identification number, or any other information in a document to search for it. The addition of PRN will allow users to subscribe to free email alerts when new documents of interest are recorded at the Register of Deeds.
Brown said, “We’ve taken our Super Index, a property document search engine that is easy to use for homeowners and professionals alike, and added a notification feature. Now anyone can receive updates on their property whenever a document pertaining to that property is recorded at our office. This system will allow users to know the up-to-date status of their property and will alert them to potential real estate fraud.”
Residents can sign up at ocmideeds.com using their name, address, property identification number or document type. “We are constantly striving to find ways to better serve Oakland County residents,“ Brown said. “The Super Index and Property Records Notification system provide another means by which we can be a resource and help fight fraud.”
PRN is a great tool to help homeowners remain aware of what’s going on with their property and can also be a great resource for realtors and law enforcement. For residents who find that they are victims of real estate fraud, the Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds Office recommends that they contact local law enforcement and an attorney.
This year, the National Association of Counties (NACo) awarded Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds Lisa Brown with a 2016 Achievement Award for the PRN in the Civic Education and Public Information category. For over forty years, NACo has recognized innovative programs in county government through their Achievement Awards Program, a program that allows for counties to promote successes and share best practices.