Is Buying at a Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sale Worth It?

Is Buying at a Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sale Worth It?


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philadelphia sheriff tax salephiladelphia sheriff tax saleBuying at a Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sale can help you pick up a property for next to nothing, but this process also comes with a unique set of challenges.

If buying property from the Sheriff sounds interesting to you, then you’re in the right place. Learn more about Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sales here.

What is a Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sale

If a property owner in the city of Philadelphia fails to pay any municipal debt, then that property can be sold by the Sheriff’s office to regain the unpaid debt.

These debts could include city property taxes, utility bills like sewer or water or even school taxes.

Basically, if you don’t pay your bills or taxes to the city they can take your property and sell it to get their money back. While this might be a really unpleasant situation for the person who is not able or willing to save their property, it’s a great deal for investors looking to buy houses, buildings and lots.

Two Kinds of Philadelphia Sheriff Sales

There are actually two kinds of Sheriff Sales in Philadelphia. The first is a tax sale, mentioned above. The second type is called a Judicial Mortgage Foreclosure Sale. With a tax sale if you don’t pay your taxes they can sell your property. On the other hand, with a Judicial Mortgage Foreclosure Sale the property is foreclosed on and sold if you don’t pay other debts like mortgages.

The Sheriff’s office runs them both and by attending and being prepared you can scoop up one heck of a deal.

Great Deals if You’re Prepared

The lowest bid that can be offered at the Sheriff’s Sale is $600. After that, each bid must go up by $100. This means that properties can start low and go for pennies on the dollar.

However, buyer beware. These properties are often abandoned and neglected and can have a wide range of issues. Buying one for next to nothing might not really be a deal after you put all of the money you need into it.

If you have won the auction you must put down $600 or 10% of the purchase price to secure your purchase. That has to comes in the form of certified check or money order. You then have thirty days to pay the rest.

If you come in second, don’t give up! You can register as the second highest bidder and if the winner of the auction can’t complete the sale then you win it for your bid.

Do Your Homework

The properties are listed before the sale giving you a chance to do your homework. You can look at public records and check out the property physically as well too.

Of course, you cannot enter the property as someone might be living there but you can still get a feel for the condition of the property.

Right of Redemption

If the property that you purchase at auction is occupied 90 days before it is sold, the owner has what is known as the Right of Redemption.

Basically, the previous owner has nine months to pay their delinquent debts and they can reclaim the property. If the property was abandoned, you don’t have to worry about it. But, if it wasn’t, you might want to hold off on making a whole bunch of improvements in case the previous owner gets their stuff together.

D&D Property Solutions

Whether you’re looking at buying a foreclosed property from a bank or a Philadelphia Sheriff Tax Sale, the experts at D&D Property Solutions can help.

Our friendly staff is knowledgeable and can help you navigate any real estate situation out there. Give us a call at (267) 888-8987 or contact us here if you have any questions.

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