How To Prepare To Go To A Tax Auction

How to prepare to go to a tax auction.  Learning how to prepare to go to a tax auction is something that every investor needs to know.  I won’t go over research or anything like that.  In this post I will only cover what you need to know to be ready for a tax auction.

There are some websites that manage the auctions for multiple counties.  The largest site is  They have auctions for many counties in California, Idaho, and other states.  Most counties have their own website that manages their own tax auctions. is another website that handles many counties in Texas, Tennessee, and others.  They are a law firm so tax auctions isn’t all they do.

To find out if the county you are interested in has online auctions you will need to contact the appropriate party.  This could be the county treasurer, tax collector, or clerk of the courts.  If you look under one department and don’t see the information you are wanting, check the other departments also.  If you still can’t find what you are looking for, contact the Treasurer and they should know where to direct you.

Once you found the website for the online auctions you will need to read their terms.  Some counties require registration at least a day before the auction.  Others want it a week before or the day of the auction.  Online auctions often require a deposit prior to bidding.  This deposit may be required for each property you are interested in purchasing.  In this case one deposit for five properties will not be accepted.  You would need five deposits for five properties.

If the county does not offer online auctions, be sure you know the requirements before making the trip to the courthouse.  Physical auctions usually don’t require a deposit, but they want payment immediately after the auction.  The method of payment typically accepted is cash or certified check.  Rarely do the accept credit cards.

If you are flying in or driving long distances, determine what time you need to leave in order to arrive at least 30 minutes early.  Some auctions will not allow registration once the auction has begun.  Give yourself some time for heavy traffic and unforeseen events that could slow you down.

If you want to learn more about how to prepare to go to a tax auction then please visit

Tax Sale Due Diligence

Tax sale due diligence.  Tax sale due diligence varies on the type of tax sale you are interested in.  For tax lien sales, the due diligence is not as in depth as it should be with tax deed sales.

A tax lien is backed by the real estate the lien is against.  If the property is not worth the amount of back taxes owed, it is less likely you will get your investment back.  When you research the property, find out what the tax assessed value is on the property.

The tax assessed value is not the same as the market value, but it can give you a good idea of whether or not the property is worth the amount owed.

The next step is find out what the approximate market value is of the property.  To do that you can call a real estate agent and ask them or you can search real estate listings in that area and see what comparable properties are selling for.

Your main goal for tax lien sales to get a property that will be redeemed.

Tax deed sale due diligence is the same as tax lien due diligence, but more.  In addition to determining the value, you also need to be aware of the liens on the property.  In most state, all liens, excluding federal liens, are erased at the tax auction.

Check with the local jurisdiction to find out what type of liens are erased and what stays.  This is very important to know.  If there is an IRS lien on the property and you buy, you are now responsible for that lien.

The counties are required to notify all lien holders prior to the auction.  If one party is not notified properly they may be able to buy the property from you or dispute the sale.

The condition of the property you are interested in buying is important to learn.  If you are buying land, is the lot buildable or a steep slope.  Is the land swamp land? Is there debris on the property that will need to be removed?

If you are interested in a home find out if the it is livable.  There have been homes sold at tax auctions that already had a demolition order.

The goal of a tax deed sale is to own the property.  Don’t take chances or you’ll lose your shirt.  If you want to learn more about tax sale due diligence visit

Goal Setting For Tax Foreclosure Investing

Goal setting for tax foreclosure investing.  Goal setting for tax foreclosure investing is very important and one of the most important steps to take before you purchase a tax lien or a tax deed.

First off, what is the outcome you would like to see from your investment?  Do you want the lien to be redeemed or do you want to own the property?

If you want to invest and get paid off, then a tax lien is the way to go.  You pay the taxes and then put a lien on the property.  After a pre-determined period of time if the lien is not paid off, you have the right to foreclose on the property.  Most of the liens with homes are redeemed so you probably won’t have to worry about the foreclosure process.

The interest rate on tax liens varies from state to state, but don’t think that just because one state has a higher rate than another that the higher rate will be more profitable.  At tax lien auctions investors bid down the rate rather than bid up the price.  If the rate is 18% to start, it could get bid down to 5%.  Always check the results from past auctions if available so you will have an idea of what to expect.  With more counties turning to online tax lien auctions there are more investors bidding because of the simplicity of the process.

If you want to own the property, then you will want to buy from a tax deed auction or a redeemable tax deed auction.  A regular tax deed auction will give you title with in 30 days in most cases.  The redeemable tax deed auction may take six months to two years before you obtain the title, but cause the owner has the right to pay off your investment plus interest.

When you are goal setting for tax foreclosure investing, always know what will be your purpose of the investment.  If you don’t want ownership, buy a lien. If you do want ownership, by a deed.

If you are interested in learning the tax foreclosure investing process step-by-step then visit

Tax Deed States

Tax deed states.  There are a small number of tax deed states that will give the deed to the investor for theamount of taxes plus fees.  The tax deed states are as follows:

  • Alaska Tax Deedstax-deed-states
  • Arkansas Tax Deeds
  • California Tax Deeds
  • Idaho Tax Deeds
  • Kansas Tax Deeds
  • Maine Tax Deeds
  • Massachusetts Tax Deeds
  • Michigan Tax Deeds
  • Minnesota Tax Deeds
  • New Hampshire Tax Deeds
  • New Mexico Tax Deeds
  • North Carolina Tax Deeds
  • North Dakota Tax Deeds
  • Oregon Tax Deeds
  • Pennsylvania Tax Deeds
  • Utah Tax Deeds
  • Virginia Tax Deeds
  • Washington Tax Deeds
  • Wisconsin Tax Deeds

Just because the state isn’t listed in the tax deed states list, does not necessarily mean that you cannot buy tax deeds from that state.  Many states that are listed as Tax Lien States also offer tax deed sales under certain conditions.

Here is a list of the tax lien states:

  • Alabama Tax Liens
  • Arizona Tax Liens
  • Colorado Tax Liens
  • Florida Tax Liens
  • Illinois Tax Liens
  • Indiana Tax Liens
  • Iowa Tax Liens
  • Kentucky Tax Liens
  • Louisiana Tax Liens
  • Maryland Tax Liens
  • Mississippi Tax Liens
  • Missouri Tax Liens
  • Montana Tax Liens
  • Nebraska Tax Liens
  • Nevada Tax Liens
  • New Jersey Tax Liens
  • New York Tax Liens
  • Ohio Tax Liens
  • Oklahoma Tax Liens
  • South Carolina Tax Liens
  • South Dakota Tax Liens
  • Vermont Tax Liens
  • Washington, D.C. Tax Liens
  • West Virginia Tax Liens
  • Wyoming Tax Liens

Several of the counties in the tax lien states also hold tax deed auctions.  Arizona, Colorado, Florida, and Oklahoma are just a few that offer tax deed sales.  The criteria for each county may be different so check with the individual county to find out if they offer tax deed sales and what the requirements are.

You may have noticed that there are some states missing from the two lists.  That is because there is a third category the tax investor should know about and that is the Redeemable Deed States.  In the redeemable deed states, if the investor wins the property at the auction, there is a set period of time where the owner may redeem the property by paying all fees and interest.

After the redemption period is over, investor takes ownership of the property.   There are only a handful of states that practice this method of tax auctions. They are:

  • Connecticut redeemable deeds
  • Delaware redeemable deeds
  • Georgia redeemable deeds
  • Hawaii redeemable deeds
  • Rhode Island redeemable deeds
  • Tennessee redeemable deeds
  • Texas redeemable deeds

Knowing the tax deed states is only a small part of investing in tax deeds.  If you would like to learn the process and how to invest in tax deeds then I recommend as the best source for tax sale training.

How To Find Tax Auctions

How to find tax auctions.  Are you interested in learning how to find tax auctions?  It is much easier than onehow-to-find-tax-auctions might think if you know where to look.

In the early days of the tax auctions, if you were interested in finding tax auctions  you would have to search the newspaper or call the newspaper in the area you are interested in and have them mail a paper to you.  That would be very time consuming and makes investing nationwide very difficult.

Today with the popularity of the Internet, investors are able to find tax auctions from the comfort of home.  Many counties now have websites that will list the upcoming tax auctions. Some of the counties will post information about each lot so that you will have an easier time researching the property before committing to bid on the property.

There are two primary methods I use when I am searching for tax sales. The first method is to use a search engine.  I just type in the county I am interested in and the website usually comes up.

For example, if I want to find the tax auctions in Lee County Florida, I will type Lee County Florida in the search engine and the first result is often the county website.  There will be times when the county does not have a website or a private individual has made a site about the county.

I have found that when counties do not have a website, the clerk or treasurer may.  In that case I would type in Lee County Florida clerk of the courts or Lee County Florida treasurer depending on which department I am looking for.

The other source I use to find tax auctions in  It is the National Association of Counties and lists most county websites and contact information.  I have gone through every county on their site and not all of the websites are correct.  If it doesn’t show a website the county may not have one, but search for one anyway because I have found a few that were not listed.

Once you find the county website, you can usually find the tax sale information on under the treasurer or tax collector.  That isn’t the case with every County so also check with the clerk. Most of the time you will not need to call, but some counties do not publish the tax properties online and require you to either buy a newspaper or send them some money to mail a list to you.  Those counties can often have good deals because fewer investors are willing to take the extra steps necessary to review the properties.

If you are interested in learning more about how to find tax auctions then please consider visiting the

How To Buy Tax Deed Properties From The Government

How to buy tax deed properties from the government.  If you are interested in how to buy tax deed properties from thehow_to_buy_tax_deed_properties_from_the_governmentgovernment there are a few key points to know before you begin investing your time and money in the process.

First, from which state are you interested in buying?  Some states offer deeds, others only sell liens, and still others offer both and through separate sales.  Check with the state or visit your county website to find out which one they offer.

Second, determine how much money you can spend on purchasing the tax deed property from the government.  Once you know how much you can spend and before you start bidding, you need to determine what additional fees will be required.  Common fees may include a buyer’s fee, transfer tax, recording, etc.

Third, understand your market.  Are  you interested in land or a home?  Make the determination now before wasting your time.

Fourth, research properties that match your criteria.  Most information can be found at the county or on their website. Your criteria should include the type, price, in an owner’s association or not, and location.

Fifth, buy the property.  If you are bidding in person or over the Internet, be sure you know what your max price including fees will be before you buy.

Now you own the property.  At this point you can hold it for a future return or sell it now to make a small profit.  Learning how to buy tax deed properties from the government can take some time, but will pay off nicely if you put in the work.

Internet Tax Auctions

internet_tax_auctionsInternet tax auctions are one of the newest features that are being offered from counties across the nation.  More and more local governments are catching up to the rest of the world and building websites which include many services that can be executed over the Internet. The good news is investors no longer have to travel the country to attend tax deed auctions or tax lien auctions.

With Internet tax auctions, most of the necessary research can be done from home either over the Internet or over the phone. Many counties offer property records access over the Internet and even satellite imagery for each lot.

Like live auction, Internet tax auctions have strict rules that must be followed in order to be eligible to purchase a property deed or lien.  Each county is different so it is important to check the the appropriate party for specifics, but generally registration is required before bidding and sometimes a week before.  A deposit is often required for each property you intend to bid on.  There may be additional fees such as a buyer’s fee, transfer tax, recording fee which can add up to a few hundred dollars more than your bid.

The list of counties that participate in Internet tax auctions is growing, but a few of the states where you will find counties that sell tax deed or tax liens over the Internet are:

  • California
  • Texas
  • Ohio
  • Florida
  • Idaho
  • and more

Each of the states have different rules and websites.  The counties in Florida that offer Internet tax auctions, each have their own individual website.  In Texas, there are websites that handle several counties at once.

Internet tax auctions make it possible to start investing from home and with less capital than before.  There is more information about Internet tax auctions available to help you start your journey investing in real estate on a budget today. Visit for more information.

Buying Tax Deed Properties, Retail

A lot of time and work goes into purchasing a property at a tax deed sale.  Buying tax deed properties can be very rewarding, but can also be frustrating.  When we look at what has to be done, the list can get over-whelming:

  • Find the properties
  • Check liens against the property
  • Visit the property
  • Research values in that area
  • Decide on a budget for the property
  • If the auction is at the courthouse, plan your trip and figure in expenses
  • If the auction is over the Internet, read the rules and place your deposit within the time period
  • Find out what other fees will be required on top of your bid
  • Beat out other bidders

Then what are you going to do with the property?  We could create another list of what you can do once you own the tax property, but let’s save that for another day. This is just a short list of what is required when you decide to buy a property at a tax auction.

I don’t want to scare you, but I want to be realistic.  Do you have the time, money, and dedication it takes to invest in tax foreclosure properties?  Many end up saying they do not have the time and commitment.  But that doesn’t mean you are out of luck or that there is no other way you can invest in tax deed properties.

There is a company that will do all the work for you; they will research the property, show you on a map where it is, check the area and tell you what the draw is there, find out the market value, fly out and buy the property, pay all the fees, then sell it to you way below market value.

You would have the advantage of choosing the property you want from their inventory and then buying it without ever leaving your home.

They understand that many people want to start investing, but don’t have the thousands of dollars to start.  As a solution, they offer 0% seller financing. All you have to do is put some money down and they finance the rest.  Instead of buying one property and paying cash, many investors use the same money and buy three or four properties.

Visit their website about buying tax

Tax Deed Sale – 2 Tips On Research

Tax deed sales can by highly lucrative, but be careful of the dangers

tax-deed-salesTax deed sales have been the method of choice for many investors. The reason is simple; you have the opportunity to purchase property for pennies on the dollar. All you pay is the tax bill plus a few fees and the property is yours!

Sounds simple enough, but there is much more involved with tax deed sales then becoming the winning bidder in a property. Many of the properties at the tax auction aren’t worth the amount of taxes owed on them so the owner decided to let it go. I have seen many lots that are narrow pieces of land between two homes or land that is covered by water for part of the year.

There is certainly a buyer for those types of properties, but what would they be willing to pay? $20 maybe or $100 if you’re lucky.

Then there are the gems in the mix. Single family homes that can be fixed and sold for a nice profit or land you can buy for $300 and sell for $15,000.

Many investors make their living purchasing property at tax deed sales, but they can only do it because of the research they put into finding the gems in the long list of properties.

Two important tips for researching the property before buying it at a tax auction are first check the county records for a plat map. Many counties are online and can show you satellite imagery with the property boundaries. This can quickly help you decide if it is time to move on or continue researching.

The second important tip is to call the county or a real estate agent and ask them about the area. They often can tell you whether or not it is a good area regardless of how the map looks.

There are many more important areas to research, but those are two quick tips that can help you get your research off in the right direction. This site has great information about helping you through the process of buying properties at tax deed sales.

Government Property Tax Sales

government-property-tax-salesWhy do counties sell properties?

Counties collect money from property taxes to fund various projects like schools, roads, etc. When property owners refuse to pay taxes, the counties are put in a bind. They still need the money for the projects.

After several failed attempts to collect taxes from the current property owners the counties seek payment elsewhere. The come to me and you. They are willing to either give us a nice interest rate (tax lien) or sell the property free and clear (tax deed) for the amount of taxes owed and associated fees.

The starting bid at government property tax sales is almost always the amount of taxes owed and administrative fees which is good news for the investor. Land can be purchased for less than $200. And this isn’t land out in the middle of the desert. It is land in a private community with a golf course or lake.

Tax auctions aren’t limited to just residential lots. They also include:

  • Single family homes
  • Commercial lots
  • Apartment buildings
  • Motels
  • Hotels
  • and much more

Since the properties are so inexpensive, many novice investors think there isn’t much risk. Don’t get caught thinking there is no risk, because there is.

From meeting other investors at auctions, I have heard many horror stories about properties purchased at a tax deed auction. One investor told me he purchased a home only to find out that there was a demolishion order on that home.

Do your due diligence when you are interested in purchasing properties at tax auctions. Many people have the false presumption that if you buy a property at a tax sale, the title automatically is cleaned off of all liens. That is not entirely true. Federal liens are not erased and come with the property so watch out!

There is a lot to know when it comes to tax sales. If you are interested in learning more, visit this helpful site about government property tax sales.

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