Ownership of land is registered in the Land Title Office (LTO) and a 'title' is registered to the owner. Anyone may obtain a title search as documents registered in the land title offices are matters of public record.
A land title search will provide the following information:
|British Columbia Title Search||Alberta Title Search|
|Saskatchewan Title Search||Manitoba Title Search|
|Ontario Title Search||Quebec Title Search|
|New Brunswick Title Search||Nova Scotia Title Search|
|Newfoundland Title Search||Prince Edward Island Title Search|
|Yukon Title Search||Northwest Territories Title Search|
|Nunavut Title Search||Native Land Title Search|
A land title can be obtained by anyone of the following:
1. Legal description or Parcel Identifier (PID) - BC ONLY
Legal descriptions can be found on the property's tax notice or assessment notice. A full legal description may include: Lot, Block, District Lot, Township, Range, Meridian and Plan. However in most cases, only the lot and plan numbers are required to successfully obtain a title search.
2. Title Number
The title number can be found on the registered Form A transfer document. This number is issued by the Land title office when a transfer document is received for filing. Searching by title number is usually done when obtaining historical or cancelled titles. Each title will reference the 'from title,' or in other words, the previous title number thus establishing the property's historical chain.
3. Owner's Name
Searching the Land Registry by name will identify all of the properties owned by an individual or company. A NAME SEARCH will provide the title number, legal description and PID of each of the properties listed under that name. One or all of the titles can then be obtain. It is important to note that this search does not provide the property's civic address. An additional search may be required to match the property's legal description to a civic address.
4. Residential Address
In most provinces the legal description is required in order to successfully obtain a title search. If none is available, an obtain legal search may be required before a title search can be conducted. See our PRICE LIST to view which provinces can be searched by address and which will also require an obtain legal search.
When purchasing a new home, a title search will confirm who owns the property and for how long they have owned it. A title search will list all of the registered charges and encumbrances that may adversely affect the value or use of the property. Having all the information available on a property will help you make the best and informed decision possible before making that offer on your dream home.
Municipalities often require a current title search for rezoning or building permit applications. Depending on the type of applicaion, the City may also require other legal documentation such as the subdivision plan, or copies of registered documents.
Land title searches, registered documents and tax searches are also essential to many business professionals. Lawyers, notaries, real estate agents, mortgage brokers, appraisers, developers, insurance brokers, bankers and many other professionals all require land title searches to conduct their business affairs.
Historical titles can be searched if you want to know who owned a property before the current owners or to follow a property's chain of history as recorded in the land title office. Historical title searches can be requested back to a particular date in time, family name or back to the very first fee simple grant from the crown.
If you require an historical title for a certain date or family name and there have been several changes in ownership between the current owners and the title you are searching, each title will have to be obtained until the particular date or family name is found.
There are three main registry databases when searching for native land titles. They are:
The reports that are generated are called parcel abstract reports. They include information on the property's legal description and PIN number, instruments registered against the PIN number, and will identify the Grantors and Grantees. Parcel abstract reports can be ordered by PIN number, Lot and Plan numbers or by the names of the Grantee(s). It is also important to know which Land Registry system contains the record for the property.
More information about the Indian Lands Registry System.