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Thread: Finding owner of property trouble

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  1. #1
    us
    Jan 2014
    Carroll County, Md
    Garret Ace 250, Garrett Pro Pointer
    17
    8 times
    Metal Detecting

    Finding owner of property trouble

    Ok I am going to try and make this as easy as possible to understand... While doing my research and looking at maps I find old houses that are no longer used as a residence. I use the Historic map works site to see how far back the house has been there. Once I do that, I go onto Google earth to find the coordinates. Once I find that I go to Converting Addresses to/from Latitude/Longitude/Altitude in One Step (Geocoding) where I put in the coordinates to find the address. From there, I put the address into my states real property search. Sometimes the owner pops up, but most of the time is does not. My issue is finding the right address. I am guessing that the coordinates on Google earth may not be correct, which may cause the trouble with not getting the right address. Does anyone have any suggestions as far as a more accurate property search? Something where I can get more accurate coordinates? Any help would be much appreciated. I hope anyone who reads this can understand what I am talking about.

    Blaire
    I'm really starting to hate the invention of aluminum foil...

  2. #2
    us
    Feb 2010
    Formerly NH now East Tennessee
    Garrett GtaX1250
    3,349
    3052 times
    Take the info you have and drive to the tax collectors office in the town you're researching.
    boogeyman, russau and rook3434 like this.
    Live Free or Die

  3. #3
    us
    Jan 2014
    Carroll County, Md
    Garret Ace 250, Garrett Pro Pointer
    17
    8 times
    Metal Detecting
    Thanks Bandit. I'll have to try that.Just wouldn't want to get annoying going in there all the time ha ha
    Quote Originally Posted by NHBandit View Post
    Take the info you have and drive to the tax collectors office in the town you're researching.
    I'm really starting to hate the invention of aluminum foil...

  4. #4
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2010
    The Great Southwest
    3,270
    9490 times
    Prospecting
    Turn off "terrain" and 3D mapping in Google Earth, both features kill any accuracy you may have had. That will get you closer.

    If that's not good enough get a real mapping program like Qgis. Google Earth is "for entertainment purposes only".
    russau likes this.

  5. #5
    us
    Aug 2006
    Middle of Kansas
    635
    194 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Sometimes the addressing is off too. Especially if it was done a long time ago. That can throw off the geocoding.
    A friend of mine is fighting that in a small KS town.
    russau likes this.

  6. #6
    us
    Sep 2013
    Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
    GPX5000, AT Gold, AT Pro, Whites TDI, Bandido 2 umax, Tejon & Compadre
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    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    I use a website called GIS Browser....For example, for my county of Rockingham...I use Rockingham GIS Browser. It will list the name and address of current owner from current tax records. Some counties have better maps and some suck. Ours was awesome until January 1st when they changed it now it sucks. Hope this helps!
    Clay Diggins likes this.
    Direct descendant of:
    Ezekiel Lamb 13th VA Inf. Co F, CSA
    Robert Wyant 33rd VA Inf. Co F, CSA
    Thornton Dean 10th VA Inf. Co I, CSA

  7. #7
    us
    Jan 2010
    445
    154 times
    most of the tax collectors have a site that you can use to get the info you are looking for.I live in arkansas and they have it.

  8. #8
    us
    Jun 2006
    Out in the hills near wherendaheckarwe
    WHITES, MINELAB, Garrett
    3,902
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blaire View Post
    Thanks Bandit. I'll have to try that.Just wouldn't want to get annoying going in there all the time ha ha
    Annoying!?!? Pffft! You're paying for the service already may as well use it!
    I know it's here, just need a bigger coil!

    I think I know what my last words will be....
    "Hold my beer and watch this!"

  9. #9
    us
    Apr 2011
    N/W ARKANSAS
    FISHER
    2,121
    7221 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Blair, your problem may be that your GPS may be set to work with
    " degrees, minutes, seconds ". And the city or county offices have changed to reading in
    " degrees, minutes, (decimal equivalent of minutes)"

    That changes how the last numbers are read.

    If the last numbers are not the same as you see on your GPS, that is what is wrong....

    If you are set for
    " degrees, minutes, seconds ", i.e.
    35, 87, 30", and they have settings for
    " degrees, minutes, decimal minutes ", then their reading for the same spot will read,
    "35, 87.50 !!!!

    Point 50 is = to 1/2 minute.

    0.50 x 60 seconds = 30 seconds.

    So, if you are set for one(in all of your software). And they are set for the other, you may be forced to either doing the math every time you use their numbers....!!!
    You may need to change your settings to match their settings....!

    If you are locked in with your own TOPO program, you may be better of just doing the math, when you deal with them.

    I have faced the same issues for some time now.

    All of my maps are done and printed in the old school ways, and my partner uses his cell phone map , which is set for new settings.

    If I use his readings, I have to do the math, and enter his data by hand on my TOPO program.

    I hope this helps you.

    Happy hunting.

    #/;0{>~
    ....JESUS IS LORD.
    ...................THE BIBLE IS GOD'S WORD.
    .................................. HEAVEN IS MY REAL HOME.


    THAT'S JUST THE WAY I WAS RAISED TO SEE THE WORLD.

    REALLY, I'M NOT SHOUTING. I HAVE A VISUAL PERCEPTION PROBLEM, AND TYPING IN ALL CAPS HELPS ME TO PROOF READ WHAT I TYPE. IF I EVER NEED TO DRAW ATTENTION TO ANYTHING I'LL MAKE IT BOLD SO IT STANDS OUT. I MEAN NO HARM. #/;0)~

  10. #10
    us
    Apr 2011
    N/W ARKANSAS
    FISHER
    2,121
    7221 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    P.S. , Blair. You will also have to deal with their numbers, changing from day to day!
    Post, 9,11 protocols require slight changes in gps satellite readings.
    Government offices may be off by a few feet, or more, and that changes at odd intervals.... that is to protect their offices from certain types of attacks.

    Trying to stay ahead in warfare.
    russau likes this.
    ....JESUS IS LORD.
    ...................THE BIBLE IS GOD'S WORD.
    .................................. HEAVEN IS MY REAL HOME.


    THAT'S JUST THE WAY I WAS RAISED TO SEE THE WORLD.

    REALLY, I'M NOT SHOUTING. I HAVE A VISUAL PERCEPTION PROBLEM, AND TYPING IN ALL CAPS HELPS ME TO PROOF READ WHAT I TYPE. IF I EVER NEED TO DRAW ATTENTION TO ANYTHING I'LL MAKE IT BOLD SO IT STANDS OUT. I MEAN NO HARM. #/;0)~

  11. #11
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2010
    The Great Southwest
    3,270
    9490 times
    Prospecting
    Quote Originally Posted by PROSPECTORMIKEL View Post
    P.S. , Blair. You will also have to deal with their numbers, changing from day to day!
    Post, 9,11 protocols require slight changes in gps satellite readings.
    Government offices may be off by a few feet, or more, and that changes at odd intervals.... that is to protect their offices from certain types of attacks.

    Trying to stay ahead in warfare.
    Commercial GPS is only 95% accurate to 25.6 feet. Slight changes are more due to your GPS unit drifting than any imaginary "protocols". U.S. policy on civilian GPS access has been stable and consistent for 30 years. There was no change in policy or use post 911.

    If you are using one of the Google mapping systems the drift you see may be from their own aerial photo updates which often change the position of ground objects in relation to their actual surface location. Google does not strive for accuracy nor do they encourage the use of their mapping for real world locations. Errors in mapping software are more common than errors in locational accuracy.

    If you are using a cell phone your accuracy will typically be much less than a dedicated GPS unit. I've seen some pretty inaccurate commercial GPS units so ymmv. Not all GPS units are created equal.

    All the laws regarding the GPS system have been aimed at improving the accuracy of the system. None allow changes in positions of government offices or any other features. Selective Availability was eliminated in May of 2000 so there is no longer a limit on civilian use of GPS outside a battlefield.

    To test your GPS for real life accuracy put the GPS unit on a stable surface with a clear view of the Southern sky. Turn on the tracking feature and allow the GPS unit to run undisturbed for at least 4 hours. The tracks created will form a rough circle around the general area of the stationary unit. Study the tracks created during that time. Any tracks created more than 25.6 foot away from the initial GPS position are in the 5% out of bounds range. If more than a very few track points exceed the 25.6 foot rule your GPS is possibly out of standards and may need to be recalibrated or replaced.
    Last edited by Clay Diggins; Sep 01, 2017 at 03:17 PM.
    russau and ToddsPoint like this.

  12. #12
    us
    Apr 2011
    N/W ARKANSAS
    FISHER
    2,121
    7221 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Quote Originally Posted by Clay Diggins View Post
    Commercial GPS is only 95% accurate to 25.6 feet. Slight changes are more due to your GPS unit drifting than any imaginary "protocols". U.S. policy on civilian GPS access has been stable and consistent for 30 years. There was no change in policy or use post 911.

    If you are using one of the Google mapping systems the drift you see may be from their own aerial photo updates which often change the position of ground objects in relation to their actual surface location. Google does not strive for accuracy nor do they encourage the use of their mapping for real world locations. Errors in mapping software are more common than errors in locational accuracy.

    If you are using a cell phone your accuracy will typically be much less than a dedicated GPS unit. I've seen some pretty inaccurate commercial GPS units so ymmv. Not all GPS units are created equal.

    All the laws regarding the GPS system have been aimed at improving the accuracy of the system. None allow changes in positions of government offices or any other features. Selective Availability was eliminated in May of 2000 so there is no longer a limit on civilian use of GPS outside a battlefield.

    To test your GPS for real life accuracy put the GPS unit on a stable surface with a clear view of the Southern sky. Turn on the tracking feature and allow the GPS unit to run undisturbed for at least 4 hours. The tracks created will form a rough circle around the general area of the stationary unit. Study the tracks created during that time. Any tracks created more than 25.6 foot away from the initial GPS position are in the 5% out of bounds range. If more than a very few track points exceed the 25.6 foot rule your GPS is possibly out of standards and may need to be recalibrated or replaced.
    "What we are dealing with here, is a lack of communication...."

    I was not saying that government offices were being manipulated, independently of the rest of the world.

    The information that I passed along, was explained to me by a USDA FARM Agent. It was in answer to my question, about the differences on maps, printed from each of three government offices ( on three different days) concerning one single landmark.
    All three maps were in front of both of us, in his office.
    The other maps ( all were satellite maps) were printed from the county tax collector's office , and the county emergency 911 mapping department.

    Each of them were using the same GPS Coordinates, yet each one was off by several feet when compared to the others.

    He explained in depth about the slight changes made into the time transmission via satellites, that all GPS devices receive. ( not speaking in terms of receivers, whether public or private systems. )

    I asked one simple question. "Why?"

    His simple answer was. " it makes it difficult to send a smart bomb through that government window. " As he pointed to the window in his office.... implying all government windows.

    His somewhat loosely worded answer, can be picked apart with a nit pick, but no one else had an answer to that question.

    I simply passed along the answer that was given to me, by a government employee, while trying to help BLAIR IN HER QUEST.

    For what its worth, I use a Garmin hand held unit and it never got off more than a few yards, for most of a decade in the field.

    #/;0{>~
    weekender likes this.
    ....JESUS IS LORD.
    ...................THE BIBLE IS GOD'S WORD.
    .................................. HEAVEN IS MY REAL HOME.


    THAT'S JUST THE WAY I WAS RAISED TO SEE THE WORLD.

    REALLY, I'M NOT SHOUTING. I HAVE A VISUAL PERCEPTION PROBLEM, AND TYPING IN ALL CAPS HELPS ME TO PROOF READ WHAT I TYPE. IF I EVER NEED TO DRAW ATTENTION TO ANYTHING I'LL MAKE IT BOLD SO IT STANDS OUT. I MEAN NO HARM. #/;0)~

  13. #13
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2010
    The Great Southwest
    3,270
    9490 times
    Prospecting
    So you met a government BS artist. They abound. Timing? Each GPS satellite has several atomic clocks onboard and they provide the UTC timing for the entire government and civilian sectors.

    Here's the thing he didn't tell you - from a man that makes his living as a cartographer and land status researcher - me. Aerial photos are georefrenced by humans by eye and hand. That process is subject to error all the way from the contract pilot to the differences in lenses to the flatness of the film/sensor to the matching of the stereo pairs to the indexing and the normalizing process. Simply put you will never find two aerial images that agree on any three random points within the aerial contract survey. That has nothing to do with GPS and everything to do with the mapping process.

    Aerial photos are georefrenced to known ground control points - not GPS. Those control points vary in position and density so accuracy can vary quite a bit when control points are far apart. The area between the points can't be as accurate as the control points themselves and can vary up to 3X the error inherent in a control point. Obviously the question of accuracy comes down to the accuracy of the ground control point and the distance between ground control points. So how accurate are the control points? I'll let the Farm Bureau answer that critical question:

    In 2006 , it was decided that the horizontal accuracy of NAIP imagery should be based on an “absolute” specification. The NAIP contract was then amended to include the specification that “95% of all points tested shall be within 6 meters (19.69 feet) of true ground”. This was based on the horizontal accuracy standard from the National Standard for Spatial Data Accuracy (NSSDA). By 2009, all states receiving NAIP imagery had migrated to the “absolute” specification.
    So the standard of accuracy for a control point for a NAIP aerial made after 2009 is about 20 foot (within a 40 foot circle) all other points sampled between the ground control points are less reliable and less accurate. The fewer control points the more the error. Combine that error factor with the known 25 foot (within a 50 foot circle) accuracy of GPS and you end up with a minimum potential error of nearly 50 foot and a real world potential error of more than 150 feet. Not bombs through window accuracy but more like "Oh C*** Wrong House!" accuracy. Just what Blaire is experiencing.

    Here's Google's take on their mapping accuracy:

    Google makes no claims as to the accuracy of the coordinates in Google Earth. These are provided for entertainment only and should not be used for any navigational or other purpose requiring any accuracy whatsoever.

    Our imagery varies from sub-meter resolution in major cities to 15 meter resolution for most of the earth's surface, with a global base resolution of 1KM. Since our database is constantly being updated, we cannot state a specific resolution for any geographic region.
    That's just the resolution of the imagery. By default accuracy will always be less than resolution.

    When I map an area of ~ 200 square miles I can achieve a mapping point accuracy of better than 30 foot with professional mapping systems with centimeter precision.

    The Aerial data that might be displayed on that map will still be only as accurate as the control points used and the method of georeferencing that aerial. If the aerial is the standard NAIP my mapping can't improve on the 50 - 100 foot native accuracy of that image. My map points will still be accurate to better than 30 foot but the aerial they are displayed on might easily be 150 foot off from the actual position.

    For greater accuracy in an aerial image map I have to hire a company to establish fresh sets of ground control points and commission new aerial imagery. That's a very expensive proposition that runs into many thousands of dollars per acre and sometimes takes months to put together. The greater the accuracy I require the more the control points, the more professionals and equipment on the ground and the bigger the overlap on the aerial scans. That all spells big money and long term scheduling to get all the pros in place together with good weather and enough equipment. The rougher the terrain the more expensive the job. The worse the weather the more expensive the job. The more trained professionals to establish and man the control points the more expensive the job. Neither NAIP or Google even consider trying to map at those levels of accuracy.

    I've given you the native government standards for GPS. I've given you the actual standards for aerial photography available on the web. I've given you my own professional experience in high level mapping. Hopefully that's helped you and Blaire to understand why an object seen on Google maps could not actually be where the google coordinates say the object is. It's not only possible but it's actually pretty typical, as Blaire has already pointed out in her original post.

    I hope that answers your question about why these locations are so far off Blaire. If you want to increase the accuracy you will need to move to a better mapping software and take into account the normal variables like I indicated above. If you decide to do your own mapping you can get a lot more accurate for free but the learning curve is a lot steeper than Google. Let me know if you decide to go that way and I can give you some directions to get you started.
    Last edited by Clay Diggins; Sep 02, 2017 at 12:03 AM.
    russau likes this.

  14. #14
    us
    Apr 2011
    N/W ARKANSAS
    FISHER
    2,121
    7221 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    This has been a senseless discussion.
    You have slandered a man that works for a branch of the US government that has a name and a face, and yet you post links to nameless, faceless government offices to backup your points.

    I don't ask you to retract anything that you have posted, even though your opening remarks were hostile and insulting.

    Stand by what you have written.

    I will stand by what I have posted.
    The agent had no reason to sell me a line of b.s., so I passed it on, to BLAIR.

    In good faith.

    I'm sure that Blair can take whatever she needs from all of this, and I apologize to her for my part in dragging her thread down.

    There is no reason to go on with this.
    Nit picking is for nit wits.

    I wish you, happy hunting and for you to live in interesting times and places.

    Good night.
    #/;0{>~
    can_slaw and Clay Diggins like this.
    ....JESUS IS LORD.
    ...................THE BIBLE IS GOD'S WORD.
    .................................. HEAVEN IS MY REAL HOME.


    THAT'S JUST THE WAY I WAS RAISED TO SEE THE WORLD.

    REALLY, I'M NOT SHOUTING. I HAVE A VISUAL PERCEPTION PROBLEM, AND TYPING IN ALL CAPS HELPS ME TO PROOF READ WHAT I TYPE. IF I EVER NEED TO DRAW ATTENTION TO ANYTHING I'LL MAKE IT BOLD SO IT STANDS OUT. I MEAN NO HARM. #/;0)~

  15. #15

    Mar 2018
    63
    87 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Check out the following program...called GPS sway at the following url...https://www.gpsfiledepot.com/tools/gpssway.php

    Does all the math for you...download link(s) are at the very bottom of the page. Have 2 versions...one you can installl on your hard drive & one you could run off a flash drive. Shame they don't have it for IOS & Android.

 

 
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