A House Deed is a rare item as they are no longer obtainable since the launch of Ultima Online: Age of Shadows in 2003. House deeds were originally purchased from NPC Architects and used to place a player home on unclaimed land. Each type of the Classic Homes originally came as a specific type of deed and the cost varied generally on the size of the desired home from around 30,000 gold for the smaller home designs to several hundred thousand gold for a Castle. Additionally, a home could be re-deeded in which the house was removed from the land and the house deed returned to the character's backpack to be re-used elsewhere or even sold back to the NPC Architect.
With the introduction of the House Placement Tool, a player with the tool could place any type of home, including the newly introduced customizable homes, whenever they found unclaimed land. This removed the need to invest gold upfront for a specific house design and helped players place whatever type of home that would fit on unclaimed land as soon as they found it. With the house placement tool, the cost in gold of the placed home would automatically deducted from the player's bank box as soon as the home was placed.
Being no longer available in the game, house deeds became rare items, compounded with the fact that any house deeds in left in a character's bank box or backpack would convert themselves into house placement tools. Also, any house deeds that were double-clicked in a character's backpack would also change into a house placement tool. With these stringent conditions, preserving house deeds became difficult to say the least, adding to their value as a rare item.
As a warning and sidenote to rares collectors, house deeds for houses that were re-deeded or purchased prior to April 16, 1999, are stealable with the Stealing skill.