How far back do your records date?
Our official records date back to April 1906 and our maps date back to 1850. For any historical records, please contact the San Francisco Public Library or the San Francisco Historical Society.
What types of records are stored in your office?
Our records include any written document that affects the title to or possession of real property where the recordability conforms to the requirements stated by law. A document may be executed by a person or persons transferring title to, or issuing a lien on real property, or giving a right to a debt or obligation.
In general, there is a specific statute to record a document, but many documents can be recorded without statutory justification. Often times, a county law may allow the recordation of certain documents in addition to those recognized by state law, only if the procedures for recording comply with the state law.
How can I obtain a copy of my title deed?
You can obtain a copy of your title deed by coming to our office or sending a written request along with a payment (Recording Fees). If you do not know the number of pages in the document, you may send a check with the instruction of "Not to exceed $____" (written in the Payable To area of the check) in order to avoid rejection of your request for lack of adequate funds. Please note that you will receive the most current deed unless you specify the book and page of the document in your letter. Please include a self-addressed stamped envelope with your request.
Do you have blank forms so that I can prepare documents to be recorded myself?
No. We do not provide any blank forms. You can obtain forms from a stationery store or bookstore.
What is the difference between a title deed, deed of trust and deed of reconveyance?
A title deed shows ownership of the property executed between two parties: grantee and grantor. A deed of trust is a loan document that is executed by three parties: trustor (borrower), trustee and beneficiary (lender). A deed of reconveyance is a document showing that a loan under a certain deed of trust has been paid in full. It is important to note that when the bank issues a deed of reconveyance, the title on the property does not change.
Is there a recording fee for the Preliminary Change of Ownership Report (PCOR) and Transfer Tax Affidavit?
No, there is no recording fee for these two forms. However, the Preliminary Change of Ownership Report (PCOR) and Transfer Tax Affidavit must always accompany any title deed you intend to record.
What is the Transfer Tax Rate for the City and County of San Francisco?
If entire value or consideration is:
More than $100 but less than or equal to $250,000, the tax rate is $2.50 for each $500 or portion thereof;
More than $250,000 but less than $1,000,000, the tax rate is $3.40 for each $500 or portion thereof;
$1,000,000 or more, the tax rate is $3.75 for each $500 or portion thereof.
How can I determine the sales price of a property?
You can obtain the sales price of a property if you have the transfer tax rate indicated on the title deed. Please see our transfer tax rate sheet for formulas (link to transfer tax rate sheet).
I just received my credit report and it is showing a lien on my record. How can I obtain a copy of the lien and whom should I contact to remove it from my record?
The Assessor-Recorder's Office is not authorized to release any Federal, State, Mechanic, Local Liens or Abstracts of Judgment from your real property or your name without a Release of Lien issued by the party that recorded the lien. Please do not contact the Assessor-Recorder's Office to dispute any lien issues unless the lien was placed by the Assessor-Recorder for Delinquent Transfer Taxes. You may obtain copies of any document recorded in our office either in person or by a written request (copying charges apply).
How can I get a copy of my marriage certificate?
There are several ways you can obtain a copy of your marriage certificate. You can request it in person at our City Hall office, by mail, over the phone, or via the internet. In person you may fill out a request between the hours of 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. By mail, please download a copy of the Application for Certified Copy of a Non-Confidential (Public) Marriage Certificate, complete the application, have it notarized, and send your application and a check in the amount of $14.00 for each certificate requested, payable to the San Francisco Assessor-Recorder at 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, City Hall, Room 190, San Francisco, CA 94102. Your request must include the couple's first and last names (for the bride, please include the first name and maiden last name) and date of marriage. Also, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope.
The Recorder does not accept credit cards for online or phone orders; however, for your convenience, you can process online requests through a secure independent company; Vitalchek Network, Inc. which can be reached through its website at www.vitalchek.com or by phone at 800-669-8312. An additional fee is charged by VitalChek for using this service, and all major credit cards are accepted, including American Express®, Discover®, MasterCard® or Visa®.
Please note there is a $5.00 convenience fee for any requests taken online or over the phone.
How soon after I am married can I obtain a copy of my marriage certificate?
You may order copies of your marriage license 10 days after the marriage license has been received in the Assessor-Recorder's office.
How long will it take to receive the copy of my marriage certificate, after my request?
Please allow 4-6 weeks after receipt of your request. The exceptions for this time period is when you can provide proof that you need the marriage certificate on an expedited basis. These exceptions are: immigration issues, travel outside of the U.S., or other issues that will create an undue hardship if the marriage certificate is not received on an expedited basis. The desire to have your name changed is not considered an undue hardship.
Where do I apply to get married?
You apply for a marriage license at the Office of the County Clerk located in City Hall, Room 168.