Tax Lien Certificate Sales in Georgia
Government Tax Lien Certificate Sales are caused by homes & properties which the owner has not paid the taxes for. As a result, the government puts a lien on the house or property and offers an investor like you to pay their taxes for them. You receive your return on investment once the owner pays the taxes back. Should the owner not pay the taxes back, you could just as well receive a good 3 bed, 2 bathroom home for only ,000 in Georgia!
In Georgia, first you need to find your county’s real estate tax web site or phone number. You should first, go to google.com and enter your county and state + “property tax collector”, “property treasurer” or “property taxes”. After you locate your county’s real estate tax office, search the web site, email or phone them in order to locate a list of “delinquent tax properties.” (Usually this info will be on their website, or in a local classifieds section of the newspaper). Also ask when the local tax sale will be held & for a copy of the rules of their tax sale. (Understand that various counties and states refer to the tax sale by several different names such as: tax deed sales, tax lien certificates sales, tax sale, and tax levy sale…but they’re all the same thing.)
After you have located a copy of the delinquent properties available, you need to research what real estate properties are worth it to bid on at the tax sale and which ones you need to mark off the list. For the best way to do this, go to your county’s property appraiser website and browse the public records for each property located in parts of town that you desire. Most counties have this info online. If you find that your county does not, then you need to visit your county property appraiser’s office to look at hardcopies of the delinquent property records. Ultimately, the ideal properties you should concentrate on are the ones with the lowest possible risk and the surest chance to sell in case you wind up owning the property. You should avoid vacant land as a beginner because this type of tax lien carries the most risk. Residential family homes in middle class communities are a low-risk investment and should be your area of focus. Begin to narrow down your list to houses you prefer according to area, recent sales history, and the estimated house value.
To find the estimated house value of a property research on your county’s property appraiser records website or use websites such as Zillow or Cyberhomes to get a quick estimate.
Next, grab your list of your preferred properties and go visit them in person. Get accustomed to the community, the exterior of the home, shoot pictures and take notes. I can’t stress this enough. It is absolutely critical that you go to see the property in person. I have done research on properties that have seemed like a winner on paper, but when I actually saw the house in its current condition, I discovered that it was a wreck! There is no doubt, you will appreciate yourself for spending the additional time to visit the house. Once you get a few tax lien certificates or tax deed sales under your belt, you will be able to quickly research and choose the best properties.
Before going to the tax lien certificate sale, you must already know what property or properties you plan to bid on, and what your max bid will be. (As a basic guideline, you should always limit your highest bid to at least sixty percent or less than the estimated market value of the home to leave some leeway for profit and unaccounted for repair costs, etc.) If you should win the bid for a tax certificate and the delinquent owner happens to pay his delinquent taxes, you can expect a hefty return on your investment of sometimes 20% or better! Should the owner not pay his or her delinquent taxes, you could find yourself becoming the owner of a decent piece of property that you were able to get at a bargain price…and it’s all because of your diligent and research. Either way, if you do it correctly, it could be a great outcome and an exciting project. Most importantly, it is several times safer than investing in stocks, and a higher ROI (return on investment) than a bank savings account. (Please read the warning below).
Investing in real estate tax lien certificates and tax deeds can be very profitable and exciting. At the same time, it does involve analyzing of properties to limit risk. The above article gives just a general overview of the tax sale process but does not leave enough space to expand on the specific details.
If you really want a detailed step-by-step guide on investing in tax sales, refer to the link below.
You can pick up a FREE 7 Step Guide for Investing in Tax Liens here:
Written by lottidotti