Manatee County Clerk and Comptroller officials warn of a solicitation mailer that could end up costing residents more than they pay.
According to a press release sent by officials on Tuesday, Manatee County officials are warning of a private company overcharging residents for copies of their registered deeds.
Officials were alerted to the sender by a Manatee County resident after receiving an official-looking letter in the mail advising them that they could receive a copy of their deed for $89, the news release said.
The letters are sent to new owners by private companies, the press release says, and contain instructions for completing a document and returning it with a check or money order for $89 to Property Records Office LLC.
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“While the service provided by this company is not illegal, it is unnecessary,” the press release said.
Homeowners can get a copy of their deed by contacting the Manatee County Clerk and Comptroller’s Office by calling 941-741-4045 and stopping by the office. Hard copies of documents cost $1 per page and $2 for certification.
Owners can also visit the website, www.ManateeClerk.com, and download a free copy of their deed through the public records hub.
Officials are encouraging landlords and property owners to also sign up for Online Real Estate Fraud Alerts, a service provided free of charge by the Clerk’s Office. Real Estate Fraud Alerts notify residents whenever a statement, lease, mortgage or lien is registered in official county records, the news release said.
Gabriela Szymanowska covers the legal system for the Herald-Tribune in partnership with Report for America. You can support his work with a tax-deductible donation to Report for America. Contact Gabriela Szymanowska at email@example.com, or on Twitter.