Title search involves going through title records for all matters affecting title. Title records are public records listing ownership, encumbrances, liens, and other similar factors. They include written documents, such as deeds and mortgages, tax, marriage, and probate records, and any other document that may affect the title of a property. These records are maintained by recorders of deeds, city/county clerks or clerks of court. Title records play a critical role in establishing the ownership of a property and help spot encumbrances that act as obstructions to clear titles.