How many people actually own their home outright? Actually there are many who owe nothing on their home, have no mortgage, and pay no monthly mortgage payment to a bank or other lending institution. They will be required to pay taxes however, and most likely will have an insurance policy on their home, which needs to be paid yearly. But how can some people find out who knows if my house has a mortgage or if I own it outright? They will be able to tell by researching and asking their local county or city tax assessor or check in public records.

Sometimes people are bequeathed a home in a relative will, and while it may be free of a mortgage, they may have back taxes that must be paid or the house will be put up for sale to satisfy the tax bill. Even if the house is older and in disrepair, it has value and should be held onto and may be repaired before putting it up for sale. Now that person may be asking “who knows if my house has a mortgage or if I own it outright?”

As long as the taxes are paid up and current, the new home owner can be assured they are owners of that home through a deed of trust that should come to them soon after they were bequeathed the house in the will. Many times these homes have been in the family for generations and there is a sentimental value attached, so they do not want to just sell that old home off. With a clear title to the property and house, the new owners can mortgage that home in order to obtain funds to renovate it or to pay some other bills they may have. Then that home will be said to be “mortgaged” to a bank or finance company, and monthly payments will need to be paid.

Mortgaging a home can have positive effects because the interest paid is a valuable tax deduction each year. Keeping your payments current also bolsters a credit rating. So don’t just ask “who knows if my house has a mortgage or if I own it outright?” check with a local court records or tax assessor and find out.

Moe Bedard
My name is Maurice "Moe" Bedard. I am the founder of America's #1 Mortgage Forum, LoanSafe.org. My online work has been featured in the New York Times, LA Times, Fox Business, and many other media publications.