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Bay County, Michigan

Recorder Offices


Bay County Register of Deeds

515 Center Ave, Suite 102, Bay City, Michigan 48708-5122

8:00 to 5:00 M-F

Phone: (989) 895-4228


Register of Deeds

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Michigan - Bay County Recorder Information

The Register of Deeds is responsible for recording and maintaining records for real property located in Bay County.

Recording Fees

Regardless of the number of pages, all documents will cost $30.00 to record, this cost is inclusive of the Michigan Remonumentation and Register of Deeds Automation fees.

For a document that assigns or discharges more than 1 instrument $3.00 for each instrument assigned or discharged (in addition to the $30.00 flat fee).

A tax certificate must be obtained from the County Treasurer's Office prior to recording a warranty deed, land contract, assignment of land contract with warranty clause, or a master deed of condominium. The Tax Certificate fee is $5.*

The county transfer tax fee is $1.10 per $1,000 of consideration.
The state transfer tax fee is $7.50 per $1,000 of consideration.

*A separate check of $5 made payable to the Bay County Treasurer is required for all tax certifications.

Document Formatting Requirements

* Documents submitted for recording must be legible.

* Documents should be printed on white paper of at least 20 pound weight, and should be at least 8.5 x 11 inches and at most, 8.5 x 14 inches.

* Black ink with a font size of at least 10 point should be used.

* On the first page, there should be a top margin of 2.5 inches. Other margins need to be at least 1/2 an inch. These margins are to be left blank for recording purposes.

* On the first line of print on the first page, a document title must be given. This should indicate the recordable event that the instrument evidences.

* Signatures on documents must be original, and the corresponding name should be typed or printed beneath the signature.

* The names printed in the notary acknowledgment and beneath the signatures should not have any discrepancies.

* For instruments that convey or mortgage property, the marital status of the grantor is required to be listed.

* A deed of conveyance or assignment of real estate must list the grantee's full name and address.

* The name and address of the person who drafted the document must be given on documents executed in Michigan.

* Documents purporting to convey or encumber real estate executed in Michigan require an acknowledgment by a judge, clerk of a court of record, or a notary public within the state of Michigan.

* A certified copy of a death certificate or proof of death must be recorded or have been recorded and referenced by liber and page on said document when "survivor" is indicated on the document.

* A Certificate of Trust Existence and Authority require a legal description of the affected real property.

* Recordings will not be placed of record unless the first 5 digits of any social security number have been obscured or removed.

* Whenever real estate title is transferred, a Property Transfer Affidavit must be filled out within 45 days of the transfer.

* On the face of a document, the total consideration of the real property should be stated. A Real Estate Transfer Affidavit disclosing the total consideration shall be presented at the time of recording. Transfer tax imposed by each act shall be collected unless the transfer is exempt from either or both act. An exemption to the act(s) must be stated on the instrument presented for recording.


Quitclaim Deeds must be dated and must have a legal description.

Warranty Deeds must be dated, have a legal description, and have a Tax Certificate. The Tax Certificate must be obtained from the County Treasurer's Office prior to recording.

Discharges must have a cross reference to the original document being assumed.

Mortgages must have a legal description.