How can I find the outstanding mortgage amount for a property for sale?

Asked by Jordan Mendler, Los Angeles, CA Sun Nov 25, 2007

I am in the market to purchase a new home, and was told that it is possible to obtain public records that show the amount of a mortgage that is currently taken out for a given home. Is there a place online that I can obtain this mortgage information? The agent says that the seller has outstanding mortgages that are equal to the asking price, but I would like to know if this is true or if it is a bluff on the seller's behalf.

I am in Los Angeles, CA if that has an impact on what kinds of records are publicly available.

Thanks so much,

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Andrew OC, Home Buyer, 92704
Wed Nov 20, 2013
The easiest way to get the out standing mortgage of a home is download a property report. The real estate information service such as could give you an update of mortgage information, current tax, ownership history and even liens of just about any home in the US.
Web Reference:
3 votes
yah, but cost almost $30
Flag Wed Nov 29, 2017
Nextace information is not accurate.
Flag Sat Apr 8, 2017
SearchHQ is not free and I find it very interesting that the first sentence in the terms and conditions that you have to check off that you read says "THE INFORMATION IN THIS REPORT HAS BEEN PROVIDED AT NO COST TO YOU." Meanwhile they're about to charge me $29.99. Very interesting.
Flag Sun Apr 24, 2016
Lies. SearchHQ is not free.
Flag Tue Apr 5, 2016
I used to get a free property report that has tax, owner name and current mortgage information.
Flag Thu Dec 5, 2013
Pam Winterba…, Agent, Danville, VA
Sun Nov 25, 2007
Jordon.....there is not a website that I am familiar with to pull direct. Your best bet is a local Realtor.
2 votes
Deborah Madey, Agent, Brick, NJ
Sun Nov 25, 2007
Hi Jordan,
I don't work in LA area, but the following link should provide some guidance.

Even if you pull the records, it won't tell you what the current loan balance is. Mortgages are recorded when made.

Good Luck
2 votes
Hello Deborah,

Would you happen to know a good link for Northern Texas?
Flag Wed Nov 20, 2013
Murphy Team, Agent, Portland, ME
Tue Aug 11, 2015
Go to the Registry of Deeds in your county (most are on line now). Research the name of the seller and you should be able to find the recorded mortgage. If the owner purchased the property in 2010 and if the mortgage states the interest rate, you can do the calculations presuming the owner paid just the monthly mortgage amount each month since the purchase. You should be able to get an approximate number.

Also, before the closing, the title company will be getting the "payoff balance" for the loan(s) and you will be able to find out what the seller actually owes. If someone disclosed to you that the seller owes a certain amount and he owes less, then that person lied to you.
1 vote
N, Home Buyer, 60625
Tue May 5, 2009
The county recorder of deeds should have that information. It is part of the public record. If there is a website and you have the Property Identification Number (PIN for tax purposes) you should be able to find it.
1 vote
Pam Winterba…, Agent, Danville, VA
Sun Nov 25, 2007

Your Realtor can have the local title company pull the outstanding "Deeds of Trust" on the property for you. They are publically available as they are recorded against the property.

Unfortunately, California does have many properties where sellers owe more than what the property is worth. Many purchased with 100% financing and were expecting mass appreciation.
1 vote
love13, Home Buyer, Spokane, WA
Fri Oct 6, 2017 can do a one week thing for free, but you have to cancel the service or you get the 1 month charge of 50 bucks. Designed for people that flip, but if you're ready to buy it will give you tons of info.

I've used it, lets you know what to bid or offer since most people won't go below what they owe. Helped me buying from a bank, wound up getting my house for 150K less than what the bank had into it.

But you have to cancel in 7 days, it's still worth 50 bucks for one month. Gives current loans, building permit history, sex offenders, etc... Searching with it is mostly foreclosures and bank auctions but if you know the address you're set.
0 votes
Rmalik, Home Buyer, Short Hills, NJ
Mon Jan 23, 2017
Did your question get answered? I am in a similar situation now

0 votes
Markrichards…, Home Buyer, Tarzana, CA
Mon Jun 27, 2016
How to find out if the house I want to buy is on mortgage
0 votes
Maggie Oreck, Agent, Studio City, CA
Tue Aug 11, 2015
You will be able to find the original purchase price but no the actual amount due. That is private information

Maggie Oreck
0 votes
Hello Maggie,
The 'Unpaid Balance' ,UPB for short, or 'Outstanding mortgage balance' , is crucial for calculating Short Sale offers for REO'; or of a no-equity property for sale so as not to offer less than is owed or property is in preforeclosure and is a 'Subject to' candidate is not confidential information as many realtors mistakenly believe.
Flag Mon Aug 24, 2015
Cyndicole16, , Philadelphia, PA
Sun Aug 10, 2014
Is there a mortgage on property 528 North 12th Street
0 votes
freelancer.p…, Both Buyer And Seller, London, KY
Mon Apr 7, 2014
well I think web is the best medium to research on any topic, all you have to know the search term which will yield you exact answers.
0 votes
Esfand Azad -…, , Tarzana, CA
Wed Feb 9, 2011
The best is to contact the Listing Realtor to obtain this information.He can get the information from the Title company,and from the Seller ,within his mortgage papers when he obtained the loan and ,the latest mortgage statements recieved ;there may be more than one mortgage on the property ,and other liens.Best is the title search, which needs to be done to get the information.

Let me know if I can be of help.
Thank you.
Esfand Azad
0 votes
what if the subject property is not listed, and the intent of the investor is to wholesale?
Flag Sat Mar 12, 2016
Lorie Gould, Agent, Duluth, GA
Thu Nov 29, 2007
If the listing agent (who representst the seller) is correct and the seller does owe equal to the asking price does that mean that the home is worth more? Absolutely not! A homes value is determine by sold comparables. In our current Atlanta market, you would want to pay less than the last comparable home that sold. You do not want to overpay for a home because of what a seller owes. It is a hard market for sellers; however, you are not to blame for when they bought their home and what they paid for their homes or the number of mortgages that have taken on their home.

Do you have an agent representing you or are you dealing directly with the sellers agent? Are you just inquiring on a home or have you actually visited Atlanta and seen the home with an agent? If so, I would recommend that you hire an agent. As an agent here in Atlanta, I do have access to tax records just as any agent in Atlanta or an Agent in any State does which can show the original loan amount on first mortgages and any additional mortgages. Consumers cannot access our online services to obtain this information. This information is only as good as the person who imputed the information from the county. There are typo's and missing information on a regular basis. Even if 100% accurate it would not show if the seller has paid down his mortgage balance.

I am not aware of a public website but you could attempt a Google search. I believe you that do a person check (which is like a background check) on an individual online at a cost which I do believe includes
mortgage amounts; however, based on my earlier statement I do not believe this is worth you while. It has no bearing on what you should or should not pay for a home.

Lorie from Atlanta
0 votes
The Lewis Sa…, Agent, Grayson, GA
Thu Nov 29, 2007

This depends on what is reported on the public records at your local courthouse. Some will give the original principal amount of the mortgage that was taken out on the property and the recording date. This will give you a general idea what might be owed.

Do you have an agent representing you on this transaction? if not, you might want to hire one to represent you and they might be able to pull the tax records to see. Good luck.
Web Reference:
0 votes
Elizabeth Bu…, Agent, Englewood, FL
Thu Nov 29, 2007
When a deed for purchase is recorded it is done thru the Clerk of the Court. In your county research the website for the Clerk of the Court and look up the mortgage by the sellers last name. Most all Clerks websites allow citizens do do so much on line like pay fines, tax bills and review public data. Hope this helps.
0 votes
Kim Pape, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Tue Nov 27, 2007
Public records will only show you the mortgage that was taken out on the property. It does not show you want the current balance is and how much they have paid off. Even if they owe more that what it sells for, that isn't your concern as the seller will have to pay the difference. The only time you would need to worry is if the seller is asking for a short pay from the bank as it is taking banks months to agree to the short pay amounts.
0 votes
Karen Miller, Agent, Long Beach, CA
Sun Nov 25, 2007
Hi Jordan,

It sounds like you have your Realtor have trust issues. When your agent told you that the seller owed his asking pricing, I hope it was after checking with the title company who can easily access the information. Your realtor should be able to get this information and show you a copy of the report.

Regardless of what the seller owes, you should only make an offer that you are comfortable with making. If you can't get this home with an amount that you are comfortable paying, you & your Realtor need to look at more properties.

Best of luck,

Karen Miller
0 votes
The Hagley G…, Agent, Pleasanton, CA
Sun Nov 25, 2007
Jordon...what is owed on the morgage should have no impact on what you offer on the home. Your Realtor should be able to guide you in making a fair price.
Web Reference:
0 votes
if he bought that house, he will has to pay that outstanding mortgage balance, that's why he concern about that mortgage outstanding balance, do you want pay outstanding mortgage balance for the previous owner?
Flag Thu Oct 5, 2017
Sure, a Realtor would be happy to guide you in formulating an offer price. But remember that both the listing agent and your buyer's agent get paid when a house sells. Their opinions will be biased. It is in your best interest to do your own research and guide your agent to put in an offer that makes sense to you. Agents have a vast amount of experience and knowledge and can be very helpful....but always remember that their opinions are biased, and only YOU can watch out for yourself.
Flag Wed Oct 23, 2013
Jordan Mendl…, , Los Angeles, CA
Sun Nov 25, 2007
Pam: Is there a website anywhere that gives access to the public Deeds of Trust database?

0 votes
Hello Jordan,

There are many portals which provide such info's, you just need to use Google, I have come up with some of them using it :, etc, Also use local area agents to check for validity of data and always consult more than 1 agent so that you can have an idea of the trend or pricing.
Flag Wed Apr 23, 2014
The easiest way to get the out standing mortgage of a home is download a property report. The real estate information service such as could give you an update of mortgage information, current tax, ownership history and even liens of just about any home in the US
Flag Wed Nov 20, 2013
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