APN error on a different deed but linked to this property

I am in the process of purchasing a property in Nevada. The owner purchased the property from a county tax sale in 2005. A problem arose when I looked up the property by APN on the county website and found an entry for the property in 2011. It was actually not this property–the legal description on that deed is correct and has a very similar APN with 1 number different, but the investor put the APN for this property on the top left of the warranty deed of the other property and filed the declaration of value under this APN. I contacted the other investor by email today and he replied that he could fix it for $295.

Does this cloud the title for the property I’m purchasing? It would make sense to me to have this issue resolved prior to purchasing the property, but it seems totally unreasonable for an investor who made an error that potentially could cloud the title of someone else’s property to demand $295 to fix it.

Has anyone run into anything like this before? Any suggestions?

Thank you.

@llashomb from what I understand of your post, yes, it sounds like this is a cloud on title.

I hear what you’re saying. It doesn’t seem right to have to do this, but the alternative would be to do a quiet title action, which will cost about 10X more than paying this prior owner to fix it, and it’ll take several months to get the job done at that.

This $295 remedy could be the answer. My only question would be, does this prior owner actually understand how to fix it? If they know exactly how to create the corrective documents to resolve the issue, then this could work… but the average person (even the average investor) isn’t well-versed enough in title to do this on their own.

Usually, these kinds of corrections involve the help of an attorney or title company. It’s not that they’re particularly difficult to do, but they’re not a “normal” type of document.

If you take this route, you might want to use a title company, so they can make sure it’s all being done right.


@retipsterseth Thanks for the input! I guess I just need to do a little more research to determine if it’s worth it to continue with the purchase. It’s only a $2200 property, so it might not be worth the hassle.

@llashomb yeah, this stuff isn’t terribly uncommon on super cheap properties (probably because too many people try to close them without a title company, and they don’t know what they’re doing). It’s frustrating, I know.

1 Like

@retipsterseth Lori - Not sure I agree with Seth in this one, but this topic wanders into the land of lawyers and I am NOT one of those.

The written legal description should be what matters, the only thing that matters as far as title goes. APN is irrelevant. The APN is just included as a shorthand description for convenience and it is used by the county recorder to index the deed. The error can cause problems as the document may not show up on a title search and that can get messy. Best to get a corrected deed filed.

Check with the county recorder to see what that takes. You may be able to prepare and file a corrected deed - from you to you - that refers to the correct APN. They may even waive the filing fee on a correction? Probably not.

Seller does sound like a dirt bag taking advantage of your situation caused by his error. Good luck with it.

1 Like

Just to clarify my earlier comments, I would agree that the legal description is ultimately what matters (to @Sean-Markey’s point). The APN is more of a reference number for the county, but it’s not a literal description of the property like the legal description is.

As I think more about it, I guess I’m not 100% confident that an incorrect APN would be considered a cloud on the title. It may come down to whoever is reviewing the title history and whether or not they think it’s a problem or not. I’ve seen different title insurance underwriters disagree on stuff like this before, so it may be one of those things that depend on who is making the final determination (ie, a gray area that shouldn’t be a problem, but some people make an issue of it).

I’ve seen some title companies get stuck on this kind of thing before, even though it doesn’t ultimately matter… so, you may want to run it past a title company to see what they think.

@retipsterseth Hate it when some silly insurance company underwriter tries to run my life!