As the recorder of deeds for Philadelphia, the Department of Records maintains public records and documents. The majority of documents that people record are related to real estate.
Individuals can record a document by mail or in person.
Businesses can also record documents, and have the option to record documents electronically through a third-party recording service.
The most commonly recorded documents by individuals are deeds. To add, remove, or change a name on a deed, have a lawyer, title company, or other real estate professional prepare the deed. Then, record the new deed with the Department of Records.
Make sure that any document that you submit complies with Philadelphia’s document recording requirements.
In person or by mail
Bring the document you want to record to the Department of Records, or mail it to:
Department of Records
City Hall, Room 111
1400 John F. Kennedy Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Hours of operation: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. You must be in Room 111 by 3:30 p.m. to have your document recorded that day.
Appointment hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m
If you record your document in person, you will receive the original recorded document back at the counter. If you are recording three or more documents, you must drop them off to be picked up at a later date.
If you mail your original document to us, include a stamped, self-addressed envelope for it to be returned.
The fee to record a document depends on the type of document. You can find a full list of fees in the Department of Records fee schedule.
If you are the surviving spouse of the person named on the deed, you can have part of the recording fee waived.
You can pay by cash, money order, business, or certified check. We do not accept personal checks, credit, or debit cards.
Payments for all fees and taxes must be made on separate checks. Make checks for the State tax payable to “Commonwealth of Pennsylvania”. Make checks for the City tax and recording fees payable to the “City of Philadelphia”.
Payments for electronically recorded documents are made by electronic payments known as Automated Clearing House (ACH).
- Private: Frequently asked questions
- Private: Department of Records FAQs – translations
- Get help with deed or mortgage fraud
- Philadelphia Realty Transfer Tax
- Pennsylvania Realty Transfer Tax
If you need help preparing a deed, you can contact one of these organizations: