Buying or selling a property is a major decision that involves a lot of money and paperwork. One of the most important documents that you need to secure and verify is the property title, which is the legal proof of ownership and rights over a piece of land or a building. However, not all titles are genuine and valid. There are many cases of fake or fraudulent titles that can cause you legal problems and financial losses. Therefore, it is essential to check the authenticity of a property title before you enter into any transaction involving real estate.
There are several ways to check the authenticity of a property title in the Philippines, depending on your purpose and the information you have. However, the most reliable way is to go directly to the Registry of Deeds (RD) or the Land Registration Authority (LRA), as they are the official sources of all land titles in the country. You can also use the LRA’s eSerbisyo Web Portal, which is an online service that allows you to request a certified true copy (CTC) of a land title, among other services. You will need to create an account, log in, and pay a fee to use this portal. You can search for a land title using the name of the owner or the address of the property.
Another way to verify a land title is to check the technical description and tax records of the property at the Municipal or City Assessor’s and Treasurer’s Offices. These offices can issue clearances, certified copies, and maps of the property. They can also tell you if the property is mortgaged, delinquent, or subject to any liens or encumbrances.
If you are buying a condominium or a subdivision unit, you can also consult the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB), which is the government agency that regulates and supervises these types of developments. HLURB can provide you with information about the permits, licenses, and status of the project. They can also help you resolve any disputes or complaints with the developer or the homeowners’ association.
In addition to these official sources, you can also check the physical features of the title document itself. There are two types of titles in the Philippines: the old manual title and the new electronic title or e-Title. The old manual title is printed on judicial form paper that has security features such as watermark, fibers, planchettes, intaglio border print, serial number, seal, ribbon, and signature. The new e-Title is printed on thermal paper that has security features such as barcode, control number, security thread, seal, ribbon, signature, and QR code. You should examine these features carefully and look for any discrepancies or irregularities that may indicate a fake or tampered title.
By following these steps, you can check the authenticity of a property title in the Philippines and avoid being scammed or deceived by unscrupulous parties. Remember that a valid and genuine title is your best protection against any legal troubles or financial losses involving real estate transactions.
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