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Welcome to the LOIS Help Section - Search Instructions

Instructions for Searching the LOIS System

The LOIS System for Manufactured Structures provides for the identification of manufactured structures by matching data entered on the query screen with data in the database. The system will return a list of all homes that match the selection criteria you provide.

When searching for a home it is always best to use a unique identifier. The Home ID, HUD Number, Serial Number and X-Plate Number are all data fields which store data unique to a single home. These are the best fields to use to find a particular home, if you know the number to look for. If you do not know one of the unique number you can locate a home using an Owner Name, Site Address or Zip Code.

When you query for a match on any field except Owner Name the system will return an exact match. When you search for an Owner Name the logic looks for any name in the system which includes the name you enter. So if you search for “JOHN” you may see name returned which include:

JOHN, ALBERT CHARLES
JOHNSON, RAYMOND C
SMITH, JOHN R
JACKSON AND JOHNSON CONSTRUCTION

All Owners in the LOIS system who are people are constructed in this format:

LAST NAME, FIRST NAME (sp) MIDDLE NAME (sp) SUFFIX

For example,

JONES, ROBERT SAMUEL JR

Owners who are businesses are stored as a single free-form field, for example:

JONES, SMITH & ROBINSON P.C.

For all fields except the owner name the search will return only homes which are an exact match to what you place in the query screen.

Using wild card characters in your search may be useful in finding a specific home. Wild cards may be used to search any of the fields offered on the query screen.

Addresses are stored as a single data entry field which is constructed by the system based on component data, for example:

1253 B MCADAM AVE NE

Searching with Wild Cards

The wild card character in the LOIS system is the percent sign ( % ). Inserting the wild card character into your search string will return any characters in place of the wild card. For example, when searching for a home with an address on Wheatland Road, you might search the addresses by entering:

%WHEATLAND%

This will return all addresses which include the word WHEATLAND. The % wild card will return any values before and after the road name.

Another example of the use of a wild card would be to look for all zip codes in Salem, which you could accomplish with the zip query:

973%

This would return all homes with a zip code starting with 973

Compound Search Logic

You may construct compound logic to help zero in on records of interest. Within a single field you may use the semi-colon ( ; ) for “or” logic. For example, searching the Owner Name field for:

OWENS%;JONES%

Will return homes which have owners with the last name of OWENS or JONES.

You can also search for values in more than one search field for compound results.
For example, you can put:

%WHEATLAND% in the address field and

SMITH in the name field

The result will be a list of all homes with a name that includes SMITH and an address that includes WHEATLAND.

Managing Search Results

Your search may return a large number of records. You can refine your search by adding additional criteria. Searching for a name of SMITH may return hundreds of homes. Search for SMITH and a first name of JOHN may return fewer. Adding a zip code would reduce the results as well. You can improve your ability to review a search result by sorting the results. If you click on the heading of any field in the list screen the list will be re-sorted on that field.

Search Suggestions

Remember the purpose of a search is to locate a single home in the system which you wish to review or modify. Searches to return sets of data, like all homes in a county, should be done using the reports offered by the system. Here are some suggestions for effectively zeroing in on a single home.

1) Always search for exact data if you have it available. The Home ID or X-Plate number should always return one and only one matching home. They are the most reliable method to identify the home you are looking for.

2) If the Home ID or X-Plate numbers are not available or provide no results, next try the HUD Number or Serial Number. The HUD Number must be unique within the system. Serial Numbers are usually unique. When searching for these numbers you may not have a complete number, so use the wild card to find letter/number sequences wherever they may appear in the data, for example, %1234%.

3) UseOwner Name and Address information to locate homes as a last resort. Remember that just because an Owner Name or Address may match information you have available, that does not particularly mean the home is the one you want. The home could be an older home that was never properly removed from the DMV system, or a home that was previously owned by the persons you searched for, but no longer in their possession.

4) When a specific home is identified, verify all of the information to insure it is the home you are looking for. Take advantage of data update opportunities to update the data data in the system with correct data. For example, if an owner comes in to change ownership and you discover that the address on the system is not correct, make sure you get the correct address from the owner, on a department approved form, and entered into the system.