Looking for good reverse lookup databases by street/mailing address?
January 9, 2009 9:01 AM   Subscribe

Are there any reputable paid reverse lookup services if you only have a street/mailing address? I am trying to get an associated name of the resident of an address, and preferably also a phone number, but I have come up dry on the free online sites. The address is in the U.S. and there is a very good reason.

The full and sad background is that UPS screwed up and pulled an old address out of their database for my husband's brother. I screwed up (bad case of the flu is my excuse) by not noticing that till the Christmas package was already delivered to the incorrect address (UPS tracking says they left it by the door Jan 2, 2009).

Now the package is (presumably) at an address in Santa Cruz, California (unless it got stolen when UPS left it outside), but I don't know who currently lives there, I just have the address, so I have not been able to contact them to ask if they have the package. I live in Virginia so I can't just go and knock on the door and ask about this package (and brother-in-law won't try due to the embarrassment factor). I put in a delivery pickup request with UPS, so UPS has tried to go to the house and pick up the package to redeliver to the correct address, but I presume the residents work or are at school during the day, as no one is home when UPS stops by, so UPS has been unable to get the package, or even confirm whether or not these people actually have it.

If all else fails, I am going to send a letter to that address through the mail, and then if I get no response to that I will have to assume the package is lost or stolen (or the people there are enjoying my brother-in-law's presents ... sigh) and I will have to start replacing the gifts at my own expense.
posted by gudrun to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Put in the address here and you will get the owners name.
posted by desjardins at 9:16 AM on January 9, 2009

OK, I'm wrong - you have to have a subscription to access that information. That is not the case in Milwaukee, the database I'm familiar with.
posted by desjardins at 9:22 AM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

I've used zabasearch dot com to trace a phone number to a name, it worked and cost 5 bucks. they seem to use some company called intelius, as does yellowpages dot com. zaba doesn't seem to allow searching by address, but yellowpages does. I can't speak to their quality, but it's also only 5 bucks.
posted by joemax at 9:23 AM on January 9, 2009

If the people who live in the house own the house you can get their name from their County's Central Appraisal District. Some counties have this online, type in the address, homeowner name pops up and for some you will need to call them. The homeowner is a matter of public record so you don't need to use one of those shady sites to get the information, that is probably where they get it from anyway.
posted by magnetsphere at 9:36 AM on January 9, 2009

Try calling the Santa Cruz library and see if they have a Criss Cross (Haines) directory for the area.
We do this for people at my library all the time, although it's not always completely up to date..
posted by exceptinsects at 9:46 AM on January 9, 2009

Yeah, I was just going to offer what magnetsphere said, but it seems Santa Cruz County only has records on microfilm. You can go to the assessor's office to get the P.I.N. (the usual first step) but all deeds and tax records are not available online.
For most of the rest of the country I've found it easy to check on who owns a piece of property and whether they take a homeowner exemption or rent it out. Once you have the P.I.N. the Tax Collector's Records and Recoder of Deeds are easy to get at and usually avilable online.
posted by readery at 9:47 AM on January 9, 2009

Best answer: You can go straight to Intelius. I've used their pay-by-the report service to find long-lost college friends, and it's legit.

The $15 "property search" should tell you who lives there. (I have to say "should," because databases are never perfect.)
posted by faster than a speeding bulette at 9:49 AM on January 9, 2009

Try your public library, they often have access to subscription databases with this information (mine uses Reference USA.)
posted by Daily Alice at 10:08 AM on January 9, 2009

Intelius works. Plus you can get a criminal background check, which may come in handy in a case of potential theft.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:15 AM on January 9, 2009

From the sound of it, you didn't insure the package through UPS? You should check with them to see if they at least have some minimum or basic monetary compensation for a misdelivered package they can't retrieve.
posted by kuppajava at 10:26 AM on January 9, 2009

Response by poster: Property is a rental and Intelius proved not so helpful unfortunately, in identifying the current renters (most databases seem to still list my brother-in-law, and he is prominent on Intelius as well), but it does seem to identify the property owners at least, so I can try and contact them and see if they will let me contact the current renter(s), or if they would be willing to do it for me.

Package was insured through UPS, but they say they delivered it to the address specified, and that it is my fault, not theirs, that it was the wrong address, which is perfectly true (I should have verified that the delivery address was the correct one.) Unless I can verify from the people at the delivery address that they never got the package, I can't try to collect on any insurance from UPS.
posted by gudrun at 11:19 AM on January 9, 2009

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