Enforcement 101 – Asset Investigation Made Easy

June 18th, 2018

For collection agencies, law enforcement, and even private investigators, conducting asset investigations is part of the job. Thus, it’s imperative that their data sources be geared towards finding the best, most accurate information.

Whether you’re conducting collection enforcement, tax enforcement, or need to perform an asset investigation for another reason, a property search can be one of the quickest and easiest ways to get the data you want.

With a property search, you can gain access to:

  • Property ownership information that reveals all legal owners registered on a property.
  • Sales history information, such as the account of property transfers, amounts, and transferees.
  • Property value.
  • Registered mortgages and liens. This can be especially interesting if you want to know the funder of a private mortgage.
  • This is critical for bad debt recovery or positioning a lien or judgment.
  • Sales comparables.

When you’re choosing your property search tool, there are some important considerations to be made.

Number one is the data source. Your asset search tools need to be fast, convenient, and above all accurate. An added bonus is when your tech does more in one place. For example, if you have to go to one resource for confirming property ownership, another for finding financial and sales history, and yet another for seeing aerial imagery, any time that you save in speed and convenience is quickly going to be lost.

When you’re selecting a tool for your asset search, there are three data sources that are most common:

  • The local MLS/Real Estate Board (data comes from registered sales).
  • Municipalities (data comes from assessments).
  • The provincial government (land registries are provincial in Canada).

Of the three, the provincial government is the most accurate source for property-related data. This is because anytime a property is transferred for mortgaged/remortgaged in Ontario, it’s first registered with the Land Registry.

In Ontario, Teranet administers POLARIS, the Province of Ontario Land Registry Information System. If you’re using an asset search provider who uses POLARIS as their data source, you can be 100 per cent sure you’re working with most current and accurate property information available.

At GeoWarehouse, our property search reports use POLARIS data and our searches are easy and convenient. You can search by name or by address and you can even go further and access Parcel Register* data and Instrument Images* so you can look at the actual lien documents, mortgage documents, etc. associated to registrations.

The next time you’re conducting an asset investigation, GeoWarehouse could be the tool that gets you results. Learn more about how to become a subscriber at www.geowarehouse.ca.

*An official product of the Ontario government pursuant to provincial land registration statutes.