The Real Estate Unit of the Register of Deeds Office receives real estate documents that arrive for recording by U.S. Mail, title company drop, electronically, delivery service, or may be presented in person by individual citizens. All documents are completely examined, and if found to meet statutory requirements, are recorded in the public record.
The legal description of the property on the documents must be reviewed and approved by the Sidwell Validation Unit before going to the cashier. The cashier validates each document through the cash register, creating an audit trail and imprinting the date, time, document type, a reception number, liber, and page.
We also serve as a collection agency for Sheriff Deed and Clerk Deed redemptions. When redemption is attempted, statutory requirements are examined and granted only to those having an interest in the property. Monies are accepted and notification of the redemption is made to the grantee. The monies are receipted and delivered to the Treasurer's Office to be held in trust until all of the necessary documents have been completed and a check can be issued to the grantee.
This unit also takes photo orders from customers, in person as well as on the telephone, and makes photos (up to a five-page limit) for counter customers. The phone orders and larger (more than five pages) counter customer orders are sent to Micrographics to be made. When the order has been completed, it's returned to this unit for final disposition -- either picked up in person or mailed to the designee.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long before my documents are returned to me?
If the documents are hand-carried to our counter, the turn-around time is approximately 2 weeks. If mailed to us, it takes approximately 2-4 weeks to be returned. If the document came to us through a title company, it takes approximately 2 weeks after it is recorded before it is returned.
Can I get a payoff amount for a foreclosure?
Why is there a 2-1/2 inch top margin requirement?
The state passed a law on April 1, 1997 that requires 2-1/2 inch top margin and 1/2 inch margin on all other sides. This is to allow room for the recording information, stamps, etc.
What information is available on the Web site?
Any recording information that is available in the office is available on the website with the exception of plat maps or information prior to January 1, 1964.
Why is there a five-page limit on photocopies?
We will make five pages for walk-in customers as a courtesy. We do not have the staff to make all the copies a customer may want while they wait. A customer may order more than five copies and we will process the request in the order it is received. Most requests are completed within 24-48 hours. Copies may be picked up in our office or we will mail them.
Does marital status have to be shown on documents?
The marital status of males must be shown on deeds and mortgages.
Does the document need to be witnessed and notarized?
Documents executed in the state of Michigan prior to March 4, 2002 must have the signatures and printed names of two witnesses. The document must be notarized, with the notary showing their printed name, county of commission and expiration date. Documents executed after March 4, 2002 are still required to be notarized. Documents dated after March 5, 2002 do not need witnesses.
What documents have to be tax certified?
Warranty deeds, land contracts or any other deed containing a warranty clause must be tax certified at the Treasurer's Office to show the property taxes are up to date. There is a $1.00 fee for the certification.
Will you record a copy of a death certificate?
Death certificates submitted for recording must be certified with an embossed seal.