Featuring real estate articles and information to help real estate buyers and sellers. The Nest features writings from Georges Benoliel and other real estate professionals. Georges is the Co-Founder of NestApple and has been working as an active real estate investor for over a decade.
The New York real estate world is full of acronyms. Please read our guide to learn how to use the ACRIS New York database and the main options to search for NYC property records and related documents. Therefore, we’ll review how to search for properties by address, block, lot, and borough. Here are the questions and themes we will address:
ACRIS, which stands for Automated City Register Information System, is NYC’s online database of public property records. It’s a perfect starting point for anyone interested in doing preliminary due diligence on a property.
For instance, you can search for and find various property records, including deeds, mortgages, and liens. The system contains files from 1966; the NYC register’s offices manage it.
However, records before 2005 can be incomplete. Should you be incapable of finding what you need on the system, you can get additional info by contacting one of the borough offices of the city registers (for Bronx County, Kings County, New York County, or Queens County).
Otherwise, you can dial the ACRIS for the city of New York Help Line at 212-487-6300.
Usage is free; you do not have to log in or create a profile.
You do not need to register to search for property records on the system. Therefore, It’s a relatively modern online database that eliminates the need to visit your borough register’s office in person.
The main menu on ACRIS NYC includes six main options. They are to search NYC property records, find addresses and parcels, apply for personal exemptions, create tax forms/cover pages, calculate taxes/fees, and provide electronic data services. The most commonly used is the property record search.
Also the calculators come in handy as well, as they’re a great way to compute your real estate property transfer taxes and your mortgage recording tax.
When searching by party name, you should use some filters available to narrow the results down to a borough. You can run various other searches on the system should you need to.
They include searches by document type, transaction number, and federal lien file number.
Whatever you’re searching for on ACRIS, you’ll have plenty of options to filter things down as necessary.
For example, you can filter by location (county/borough), date range, and document type/class. These advanced search filters can make tracking specific document recordings much more effortless.
We do not recommend that you use ACRIS instead of a title report. However, running a preliminary search on the database can be helpful. Some documents include the satisfaction of mortgages, UCC financing statements, and notices of federal tax liens.
Therefore, remember that while you can use this system as a great tool to get a glimpse of a property’s background, you shouldn’t rely solely on the website.
The New York City Department of Finance does not approve the web page, and there may be filing errors or incomplete public records.
If you don’t like the old and clunky interface on-site, you can try to use a site that aggregates data from ACRIS.
A few sites do this, including some oldies like PropertyShark and AddressReport. These websites are great for finding the contact of property owners.
Still, the website we’d recommend is Marketproof. It’s free and has an excellent, user-friendly design. What’s helpful about some of these sites is that you can also get additional data on the address that can be helpful if you’re thinking of purchasing a home there.
Most counties have a website with public property records, although some might not be as comprehensive.
For example, you can find
You can also search for property records and ownership information online, in person, or over the phone with a 311 representative. Property owners of all boroughs except Staten Island can visit ACRIS New York. Lastly, visit the Richmond County Clerk’s website to search documents for Staten Island property.