On July 1, when five or more years have elapsed since a property became tax-defaulted, the tax collector is empowered to sell all or any portion of that tax-defaulted property that has not been redeemed. A “Notice of Power to Sell Tax-Defaulted Property” is recorded and sent to the taxpayer. Property that has been tax-defaulted for five or more years and is subject to the tax collector’s power to sell may be sold. The tax collector has the authority to sell tax-defaulted property that is subject to the power of sale. This means your property will be sold, after approval from the Board of Supervisors, at a public auction or by sealed bid to the highest bidder at the time and place fixed for the sale.
Annually, at 12:01 a.m. on July 1, the taxes, assessments, penalties and costs on real property which have not been paid by the close of business on the last day of the preceding June are, by operation of law, declared in default. The property on which the taxes, assessments, penalties and costs are in default becomes “tax-defaulted” property.
Redemption of Defaulted Taxes
Redemption of property that is tax defaulted may be redeemed until the right of redemption is terminated. An owner, or any interested party may redeem tax defaulted property b paying the total amount of all prior year defaulted taxes. The amount of defaulted taxes is, in part, defined as the amount of taxes that were a lien on the real estate at the time of the declaration of default. Redemption of property can only occur after the date that property was declared to be tax defaulted.
If you are unable to pay the full redemption amount you may open an installment plan of redemption. This plan allows you to make payments on your defaulted taxes over a five-year period. To open an installment plan you must pay any current year’s taxes and penalties that may be due, pay a $55 set up fee and make an initial payment of at least 20% of the redemption amount.
Under the 5 year installment plan you are required, by each April 10th, to make one payment of 20% or more of the redemption amount, plus 1.5% interest accrued per month on the unpaid balance. If you fail to make any installment payment or fail to pay your current year’s taxes or any supplemental taxes on or before April 10th of each year, then your account will default. You can, however, pay the total unpaid balance plus accrued interest at any time before the fifth and final payment is due.