Can People Finder Websites Save Money?

Question: Why do people finder websites charge so much to run a USA people search?  

Answer: In the Google age, when you can run a free instant search and get information on just about every subject, having to pay anything for “public” records feels wrong. However, just because information is public doesn’t mean it’s free and it definitely doesn’t mean it’s easily accessible.

public-recordsThe major obstacle is that you typically have to know exactly what you’re looking for. Are you looking for criminal convictions or traffic citations?  Well, though that information is sometimes available online for free (but not often), you’re not going to be able to just conduct a social security number search to find it – you’re going to need a specific case number and usually the exact court where the criminal information was recorded. Chances are that if you already knew that, you don’t need the public records.

In most instances, public records aren’t available online and have to be requested in person, which means physically going to the specific courthouse/government agency and making a request in person. And, of course, this isn’t a free service – the cost for record retrieval can vary anywhere from $10-50 per record per courthouse.  So, not only would you not likely save any money doing it on your own, but you’re adding a lot of time and inconvenience into your USA people search.

Even ignoring the time and likely comparable cost of tracking down the public records yourself, the bigger issue is that it’s extremely unlikely that you know where to find all the information you need or would have easy access to that information.

For example, let’s say you know that your subject has lived in New York, and – based on a basic social security number search – you’ve figured out that he/she was born in Massachusetts.

Putting aside where you’d even begin your public records search in just those states alone, in this scenario, how sure are you that he/she hasn’t lived outside of New York and Massachusetts? How would you find out and how much traveling are you prepared to do if the records aren’t online?

Running a USA people search on one of the people finder websites will connect the dots for you and pull all the public records data available. Not only that, but they will also include their own proprietary/licensed information that you’re not going to find in any courthouse.  While this information is by no means cheap, it’s unquestionably faster and more comprehensive than anything you’d likely be able to put together yourself and it will almost certainly save you money.

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1. What’s the cheapest way to conduct a USA People Search?
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