A Deed search is a review of all recorded deeds on a specific parcel of land to determine the history, ownership and liens of that land. This search is conducted at the local county recorders office. When the search is completed you receive either a chain of title or a abstract of title.
A chain of title is a list of each recorded document that pertains to the property. An abstract is a copy of every document in the order they were recorded.
There are many instances when you may want a search. If you are buying property at a tax sale or without title insurance you need one. If you plan on subdividing or developing land it may be helpful also.