Friday, October 17, 2008

More powerful Grantor/Grantee searches

This article describes some techniques for more powerful Grantor/Grantee name searching on I hope you find these handy.

* Search for a name when you are not sure if you have the first name or middle name
* Search for a name when you may have inconsistent punctuation

For the most part on, names are consistently entered using the format shown immediately below the Grantor or Grantee box. For example, for Shelby County, this hint reads:

(example: Smith John)

Other counties may include punctuation and the example will be shown as:

(example: Smith, John)

I've been asked how I can search for a name, whether the name being used is the first name or the last name. I also recently discovered one of our counties that included punctuation in the name fields had a series of documents that were entered without punctuation. We will have that fixed within the week but, in the meantime, I needed to ensure that people were properly finding names. So, I changed the search hint to read:

(hint: Smith%John will find "Smith, John" and "Smith John")

The % wildcard character can handle these issues. Instead of searching for "Smith, John" or "Smith John", you can search for "Smith%John" to find documents posted as:

Smith, John
Smith John
Smith Robert John
Smith, Robert John

* Search for a name when you are not sure what letter is in a certain position

Some names can be spelled more than one way. The 2nd technique uses the underscore wildcard as a placeholder which tells the system that ANY character can appear in this position to obtain a match.

For example, if you search Grantor = GONZALE_ MARY

You will find:

The above techniques work in the Grantor, the Grantee and the Grantor_or_Grantee search boxes. I hope they prove to be helpful.