General Tax Sale FAQs-Frequently Asked Questions



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25- Delinquent Tax Sale Questions 

You Will Learn: 

1. Where Can I Find the Statutes or Laws for Tax Sales?

Ans. First, you should always consult with a Competent, Qualified & Licensed Attorney-at-Law for all legal questions, concerns, or issues regarding Delinquent Tax Sales, or any/all other Real Estate related matters . Also, you can contact the Treasurers’ or Tax Collectors’ Office for a set of the guidelines or rules for that particular Tax Sale. Keep in mind, that the guidelines are not a substitute for the Statute/Law itself. They are only guidelines. Also, you can check other resources such as “www.lawyers.com“, “www.findlaw.com, the Public Library, or a “Law Library” within your neighborhood or community. Finally, upon joining DTSL Online services, you will be able to access DTSLs’ Tax Sale Law Library which will directly connect you the actual legal statutes for each state, respectively.  Goto: http://www.delinquenttaxsales.com/Tax_Sale_Statutes.php

Important: All Information, including hyperlinks to Statutes are FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY.

Remember to Always Consult A Licensed Lawyer (Attorney-at-Law) for Legal Advice.  DTSL, LLC does NOT provide any legal advice. “Much Success As You Invest“.

2. Do I Need A Real-Estate Agent/Realtor to buy Property at a Government Tax-Sale?

Ans: No. Purchasing property at Government Tax-Sales does not require the service or knowledge of a Real-Estate person. Anyone with the knowledge of Tax-Sale Procedures can attend and participate in the Tax-Sale.

3. Do I Have to be A Resident Where Tax-Sale Properties are being sold?

Ans: No.You do not have to be a resident in the area where Properties are being sold. In fact, Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors travel across the country to attend Tax-Sales. Also, Remember: You can also buy Tax Sale Properties through the mail.

4. Will I Be Able To Purchase Title Insurance For Property I Purchase At A Tax-Sale?

Ans: Yes. Tax-Sale Properties bought or sold at Tax-Sales are treated like any other Real-Estate. However, Title-Insurance Companies are known to require Tax Sale Buyers or Investors to have a thorough Title-Search performed on the property. Always Check with a Title Insurance Company for their specific requirements, as some companies may not insure Tax-Sale Properties.

5. What Form of Payment Is Required?

Ans: The form of Payment is usually Cash or Certified-Bank-Check(s). Some Counties May Accept other forms of payments (e.g., checks, money-orders or credit-cards). Always check with the Tax Sale Officials or the Rules for that particular Tax-Sale prior to attending the sale.

6. What Time Do Tax-Sales Begin?

Ans: Accordingly, Tax-Sales may start, as scheduled, at any given time during normal business hours.

Note: Although Tax-Sales may be scheduled, for example, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., the sale may end earlier.

Remember: Again, depending on the number of Properties to be sold, the sale could end-sooner).Some sales may also be scheduled to begin in the afternoon. You Must Check the Tax-Sale Schedule in the area where Tax-Sale Properties are being sold. Also, most Tax-Sale Buyers or Investors arrive early.

7. What Is A Private Sale?

Ans: A Private Sale is the sale of real-property that has usually been deeded to a taxing-jurisdiction due to no-bids, insufficient bid-amounts, amount-of-time a property-taxes have been delinquent, or other special circumstances, which are subject to statutory requirements. Special Note: A private sale may or may not be advertised, depending on the nature of the sale. Check with each taxing unit or jurisdiction for additional information regarding private Tax-Sales.

8. Can I Sell or Re-Sell Tax-Sale Properties Once I Have Legal-Title To the Property?

Ans: Yes. Tax-Sale Properties, once title has been transferred or conveyed to the new owner(s), can be sold or transferred to another person, party or Individual, etc. The most important issue here is to ensure that you have True-Actual-Title (Legal-Right and Ownership) to the property prior to entering into a real-estate transaction or sell-of-the-property.

9. Can I Preview or Inspect Tax-Sale Properties Prior To Bidding/Purchasing?

Ans: Yes and No. Typically, while most Tax-Sale Procedures recommend that Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors should RESEARCH PROPERTIES prior to the sale; there are usually no legal-provisions for you to actually perform a visual or physical Inspection of the Property. However, many Buyers/Investor will attempt to locate the property to determine whether or not the property is located in a desirable area, community, or neighborhood. Remember: Some properties may be occupied by residents, so specific provisions are outlined in the statute(s) to accommodate, both the owner(s) and the Buyers/Investors, respectively.

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10. Can I Get A Refund for Tax-Sale Properties I Buy/Bid-on At A Tax-Sale?

Ans: No. Tax-Sale Rules and Regulations expressly states that NO REFUNDS are granted, unless the property was sold in ERROR. If a Tax-Certificate was issued to the Tax Sale Buyer/Investor, for example, the taxing authority will outline the refund procedures, which may include the Investor returning the Certificate that was issue to the Investor. Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors are strongly urged or encouraged to RESEARCH all properties prior to bidding or purchasing at Tax-Sales.

11. Can I Purchase More Than One-Parcel At A Tax-Sale?

Ans: Yes. Tax-Sale Purchasers are not limited to purchasing a number of properties. Tax-Sale officials are more interested in the properties being restored back on the active-tax-roll. As such, they want to sell or offer these properties to responsible and reliable purchasers who will continue to pay the taxes, as required.

12. Can I Buy Tax-Sale Properties Through the Mail?

Ans: Yes.Tax-Sale Properties may be bought through the mail (also known-as Over-the-Counter-Sales) in many areas. Typically, these are properties that have been acquired by the County, State, or Taxing Jurisdiction, respectively. Check with your Tax-Sale Officials for Over-the-Counter Tax-Sale Property Sales.

13. Can Delinquent Tax-Payers Bid At the Tax-Sale?

Ans: Generally, Delinquent Tax-Payers are not allowed to participate in Tax-Sales where property or accounts are past-due or delinquent. Furthermore, some State laws also stipulate that delinquent tax-payers or owners of tax-defaulted properties are not allowed to bid on properties being sold.

14. Can I Do Any Home Repairs To The Property?

Ans: In most States, Counties, etc. you are not allowed to make any Improvements Repairs, or Structural Changes to the Property unless and until you have been given given legal title to the property. However, some states do allow “Very-Necessary” Repairs.These are repairs that are deemed Vital or Essential to the property. Be certain to check with each county official, town-officer, or sheriff, etc. prior to making any Improvements. Also, note whether or not if there are any statutory provisions that allow you to add the amount of such costs to the lien or certificate. If so, there may be an added step in the process for you to recover those costs upon redemption by the owner or whoever may have an invested legal-interest in that property or parcel(s).

15. Are There Any Special Financing Programs Available?

Ans: Generally, in most states, there are No Special Financing Programs available when bidding or purchasing Tax-Sale Properties. However, when in doubt Always Ask! Laws are subject to change or revisions without notice.

16. Are Tax-Sale Properties Sold-Over-The-Internet?

Ans: Yes. While some counties do conduct Tax-Sales over the Internet, the vast majority of them require Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors to be present/in attendance in order to participate in sale(s).

17. Are All Tax-Sale Properties Desirable Parcels?

Ans: Yes and No.Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors should thoroughly Research Properties(including visiting the site) prior to bidding-on or purchasing parcels at Tax-Sales. Depending on your Investment Goal(s), some properties may meet your Investment Objectives/goals, while others may not. More specifically, some Tax-Sale Properties are Desirable while others are not.
Note: Properties are usually “Not-Marked Desirable or Undesirable”.

18. Are Tax-Sale Expenses Tax-Deductible?

Ans: We recommend that you consult a qualified and Licensed Tax-Consultant or a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for questions related to Tax-Deductions or prior to buying Property for Investment Purposes. Also, you may want to contact the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for Tax-Related matters.

19. Are Tax-Sale Investments Safe?

Ans: Yes.Tax-Sale Investments are Very-Safe. Tax-Sale Buyers/Investors Prefer Investing in Tax-Liens/Deeds for several reasons: Fixed-Interest Rates of Return, Secured by Real-Estate/Property, Back-up By Statutory Laws and Procedures, and you can Begin Investing in Government Tax-Sales at ANY Time with a Very-Low Dollar Amount or a Very-High Dollar Investment Amount, depending on your Investment Goals, etc.

20. Where Are Tax-Sale Properties Bought or Sold?

Ans: Tax-Sales are usually held in the county where the owner of the real-property resides or where the property being assessed or levied-upon is located. Some places where sales are located:
a. County Courthouses b. Designated Rooms In Courthouse c. Other Specified Locations

21. Who Is Responsible for the Future Taxes that Become-Due?

Ans: The Primary owner of the property continues to be responsible for future taxes on the property unless title has been conveyed to the Tax-Sale Investor(s). In such cases, the Tax-Sale Investor(s) are now responsible for subsequent taxes. In some cases, states/counties will allow Tax-Sale Investors to pay any or all future taxes which can be added to the required total redemption price.

22. Who Conducts Tax-Sales?

Ans: Tax-Sales are conducted by county government offices/officials such as the County Tax Commissioner, Sheriff or Ex- Officio. Also, some counties Tax-Sales may be conducted by a Licensed-Auctioneer(s) or an Attorney-At-Law.

23. How Do I Make Money, As An Investor, At A Tax-Sale?

Ans: Generally, Investors can make money at a Tax-Sale by Earning Interest on Tax-Liens, Certificates, Deeds, or Property being sold. Interest earned at Tax-Sales is like Interest earned by banks, mortgage companies, etc.. Tax Sale Properties can also be resold for a Profit, subject to all statutory laws, rules, and/or Tax Sale Guidelines.
Note: All Investors, Buyers, and Individuals (General Public) can participate in Delinquent Real Estate Tax Sales (e.g, Tax Deed Sales, Tax Certificate Sales, Tax Sales, Sheriff Sales, Annual Tax Sale Auctions, etc.).

24. How Do I Verify If My Property Is Being Offered for Sale or Auction?

Ans: Contact your County Treasurer, Tax-Office, or Sheriffs’ Office. Although county officials make every effort to contact individuals, etc. who are responsible for the unpaid or back-delinquent taxes, it remains the tax-payers duty or responsibility, by law, to ensure that their taxes are current.

25. How Much Interest Do I Make On Money that I Invest At A Tax-Sale?

Ans: The amount of interest earned varies from state-to-state and is ultimately governed by the laws of that state.  For example, Florida and Arizona are Bid-Down Auction States.In other words the Bidding starts at the required statutory amount (18% in Florida and 16% in Arizona).  The bidder who is willing to accept the lowest interest is the winner.  However, remember, along with the interest-rate your Investment is secured by-law, as liens are senior to all other judgments, mortgages, etc. and the value of the real-property may outweigh the amount of Interest that may be earned. Furthermore, providing no-redemption by-the-owner(s), heir(s), or other entity is made that may have a legal interest in the property or who has a right to redeem, you could potentially own the property “free and clear”.  In other states the Interest-Earned is fixed by-law.Texas, for example, Right of Redemption Tax-Sales Law stipulates that you could earn a Whopping 25% Return on your Investment if redeemed within Six (6) Months.  If the owners, etc. do not redeem, then you can foreclose on the property and own it – then rent/lease, sell, or even live in it – the Choice Is Yours!