The Catawba County Register of Deeds' Office DOES NOT render legal opinions. We can answer questions about the recording of the document only!
What are real property documents?
These documents deal primarily with land in Catawba County. These documents include:
- Deeds of Trust (Mortgages)
- Right of Ways
- Plats (Subdivision Surveys)
- Fixture Filings, etc.
Other documents recorded are:
- Assumed Names
- Birth Certificates
- Marriage Certificates
- Death Certificates
- Powers of Attorney
- Separation Agreements, etc.
or divorces and Wills, please contact Catawba County Clerk of Superior Court's Office (828) 695-6100 for additional information.
What is a Deed?
A deed is a written instrument, which when executed and delivered, conveys title to or an interest in real estate. There may be a required cover sheet so please check with us if unsure.
Does a deed need to be recorded?
Yes. It should be recorded as soon as possible. In order to transfer or mortgage a property, it is imperative to have a deed recorded. Otherwise, numerous legal difficulties may be created.
Is there a fee for recording documents?
Yes. There is a fee to record documents, plats, Highway Maps, and UCCs regardless if Notarized or not. Since some of these have a flat fee and others is based upon how many pages go along with such document, please click here for a more detailed fee schedule.
Accepted Form of Payment: Cash, business checks, or debit/credit cards. Feel free to call the office for any questions you may have, on any of the recording fees.
You MUST also comply with North Carolina recording standards as stated in G.S 161-14, click here to view those requirements. If an instrument does not meet these requirements, the register of deeds shall register the instrument after collecting a $25.00 nonstandard document fee as required by G.S. 161-10(a)(19) in addition to all other applicable recording fees. This office uses the standard Time New Roman font.
You also will need to pay an additional $10 for each reference made (beyond the first) in an ASSIGNMENT being recorded. Example: An Assignment being recorded makes reference to four separate original Deeds of Trust, the second, third and fourth reference will cost you an additional $10 each for a total of $56 plus recording fees. (NCGS: 161-10a(1))
What documents do you require to be notarized for recording?
The statutes provide that the following instruments must be acknowledged or proved, and they must therefore meet verification requirements to be registered:
- Affidavit (NCGS: 47-19)
- Assumed Name (NCGS: 45-36.16(8) & 66-68(b))
- Contract for real estate (NCGS: 47-17)
- Deed (NCGS: 47-17)
- Deed of Trust (NCGS: 47-17)
- Document of rescission of satisfaction instrument or affidavit (NCGS: 45-36.6)
- Lease (NCGS: 47-17)
- Marriage settlement (NCGS: 47-25)
- Memorandum of lease or option (NCGS: 47-120)
- Mortgage deed (NCGS:47-17)
- Notice of preservation of interest in real property (NCGS: 47B-4)
- Notice of Satisfaction (NCGS: 47-46.1)
- Notice of underground utilities (NCGS: 87-109 & 110)
- Power of Attorney (NCGS: 32-a-1, 47-28)
- Release Deed (NCGS: 45-41)
- Renunciation under a Will (NCGS: 31B-1(c))
- Notice of Foreclosure (NCGS: 45-21.17A)
- Satisfaction (NCGS: 44-46.2)
- Satisfaction of Security Instrument (NCGS:45-36.10(b)(2))
- Trustee’s Satisfaction (NCGS:45-36.20(e)(2))
- Withdrawal or transfer of Assumed Name (NCGS: 66-68(f))
What are excise stamps?
A tax of $1.00 per $500.00 (more easily calculated as $2.00 per $1,000.00) of the purchase price is mandated by NC state law to be paid by the grantor or seller. If no money exchanges hands then an excise stamp will not apply.
How do I obtain a copy of my deed?
The Register of Deeds’ Office will provide a copy of your deed at $.25 per page. If you do not know the book and page number, we can assist you in our office or online. If you know your book and page number and do not have online access you may request a copy by mail for a fee. Please call if further assistance is needed.
Can the Register of Deeds add or delete names to or from a deed for me?
No. Since a deed is a legal document this would be considered practicing law and the North Carolina laws prohibit us from assisting you.
Can I draft my own deed or make changes?
Yes. However, it is highly recommended that you retain the services of an attorney.
What if I have lost my copy and/or original of my deed?
The primary evidence of ownership of land is not so much the deed itself as the recording of the deed. If your deed is misplaced or lost, a copy may be obtained from the Register of Deeds’ Office and certified with our seal.
Can the Register of Deeds conduct a title search of my property?
No. Laws to do anything more than record your document and/or get you a copy of the document you are requesting prohibit us from doing a title search. We can show you in what book to locate the information you need and whether it is a real estate document or a vital record. You will find only some of the real property exceptions in the Register of Deeds. Other types of liens such as Judgments and State and Federal Tax Liens are maintained in the Catawba County Clerk of Superior Court Office (828) 695-6100 or the Catawba County Tax Department (828)465-8414.
Can I use an address to verify property infomation, including ownership?
No. This office records documents that only refer to land, using a legal description including boundary, lot, block and acreage information. To search an address you will need to contact
the Tax Mapping Department at (828) 465-8420 or go online to www.catawbacountync.gov; click real estate maps.
How do I obtain a copy of a map to my property?
Our office can provide a copy of any recorded plat for $2.00. You may also contact the Mapping Department at (828)465-8420 for a GIS map which is not a legal nor binding map.
Can anyone access the land records maintained by the Register of Deeds?
Yes. All of the records maintained by the Register of Deeds are public records except Military Discharges. You may go online and search the real estate index and images. The website will indicate what years are covered at that time. We are in the process of converting our microfilmed images to digital images and hope with each year to take this process, along with indexing, further back. Land records in the office go back to the formation of the county, 1842. Prior to 1842, you would need to go to Lincoln County.
I see many abbreviations used in connection with Real Estate documents. Where can I go to find out what they mean?
Abbreviations are commonly found in all Real Estate Documents. The North Carolina Association of Register of Deeds publishes a list of approved abbreviation codes for role/status designations, instrument types, and property descriptions. A listing of thses codes can be found by click here.
Without Internet access, how can individuals obtain information accessible at the Register of Deeds’ office?
Information may be obtained by calling our office at (828)465-1573.
How do I go about satisfying a Deed of Trust under NC Law?
Please review the following link: NCGS: 45-37 and/or 58-74-10. You may also want to consider contacting a North Carolina attorney.
Can personal information on recorded documents in the Register of Deeds’ Office be removed?
The Identity Theft Protection Act of 2005 states that any person who has private information in the records available online from the Register of Deeds’ Office has the right to request in writing, at no charge, the information to be removed from documents available online only. Since certain information is required and must be in writing, click here for a form or you will need to list:
- The book and page number of the document containing the personal information.
- The location in the document of the personal information to be redacted (revised) (GS 132.1.10(g))