The latest on real estate recordings and new technology from the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds in Lowell
10 Seven new registers of deeds will soon take office across the state in the following districts: Berkshire Middle, Berkshire South, Franklin, Worcester North, Essex North, Nantucket and Bristol North. With much registry-related policy now being established by the Massachusetts Registers of Deeds Association, a turnover of a full one-third of that organization’s membership (there are 21 registries in the Commonwealth) will have a major impact across the state.
9. On December 23, 2006, the LowellDeeds Blog celebrated its 3rd birthday, making it one of the oldest blogs of any type in the area.
8. Statistics became an item of greater interest at the registry this year. For example, early next week we will add a chart to our website that shows thirty years worth of recording data and associated information such as the prime rate and unemployment stats in an historical context.
7. The Middlesex South Satellite Office moved from the rear of the Superior Courthouse to former Record Hall in the front of the building.
6. The electronic images of all pre-1855 documents (the old “Middlesex South” books) were digitized and have now been added to the registry’s website where they can be retrieved by book and page number.
5. The marginal reference data capture project was completed. Employees went through every existing record book to locate all marginal references. These were then entered into a database that will soon be imported into the registry’s primary computer system. With these references captured electronically, the last reason to retain printed books on the shelves was eliminated.
4. Two thousand record books that were created during 1999, 2000 and 2001 were taken out of circulation and placed into storage to allow us to recapture more of the Record Hall for work space. (We stopped making paper books entirely in November 2001).
3. The informal partnership between the registry and MassGIS (the state’s online mapping agency) advanced with Middlesex North participating in GIS Day at the statehouse on November 16 and with both agencies making significant progress in our efforts to integrate our documents with MassGIS’s maps and overhead photos.
2. The slide in the real estate market continued with our overall volume of documents recorded down by 17% from the amount recorded last year. The number of foreclosure deeds recorded this year (165) was a 300% increase from last year, but still not close to our historic high of 761 in 1992.
1. To reduce the risk of identity theft, registry employees redacted thousands of social security numbers from previously recorded documents.
Wishing all a Happy New Year from the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds
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