Tax Auctions - Bidding on Property - TACS

How do I qualify as a bidder at the auction?

To qualify as a bidder at the auction, you may not owe delinquent taxes to the local taxing jurisdiction. Additionally, you may not be a Defendant in any delinquent tax suit filed by the local taxing jurisdiction.  If Internet bidding is permitted, there may be other requirements to qualify for bidding online.

What is the bidding process?

 The bidding begins with the minimum bid amount, usually between what is due to redeem the property and the assessed or appraised value, and bidding increases according to the bids received, in incremental amounts. All sales are made to the highest bidder.

Is online bidding permitted?

In some cases, online bidding is provided as a convenience.

Can I still bid if I cannot attend the auction? Is proxy bidding permitted? 

You may be able to submit a bid even if you are unable to attend the auction.  Any bid must be provided to TACS in advance of the auction with clear instructions as to the bid terms. Your bid must be accompanied by the appropriate deposit as set by the terms of the auction.

You can have someone appear at the auction and bid on your behalf. They will need to register for themselves and bid in their own name, but if they are the successful bidder they can direct that the title to the property be taken in your name.

What is the minimum bid I should expect to pay?

 All sales are required to be confirmed by the court. The Special Commissioner of sale will report on the overall bidding of the property, the appraised and/or assessed values of the property, the outstanding taxes due, and the bid amount received for the property at the auction. The bid should bear some relation to the value of the property. In the event the bid amount is unreasonable in relation to the approximate value of the property or substantially below the minimum bid, the Special Commissioner may reject the bid or recommend that the sale not be approved. Additionally, the Court may decide not to approve the sale on its own, or may determine that the property should be resold.

What is a buyer’s premium?

Buyer’s premiums may be charged to the successful bidder to offset the costs of sale and deed production.   The premium charged is usually a percentage of the final bid amount.  For instance, if the buyer’s premium is 10% of the final bid amount, a high bidder of $1,000.00 will pay an additional $100.00 for a total of $1,100.00.  The buyer’s premium is required to be paid in addition to the deposit required on the day of the auction.

Is payment in full required on the day of the auction?

No. A deposit of 25% of the bid price or $1000, whichever is greater, must be paid by the end of the auction. The amount of your deposit depends on your bid, however, the deposit shall not be more than $20,000 for any property. Payment may be accepted in the form of a check or money order. A lender Letter of Credit will be accepted, subject to approval prior to the commencement of bidding. No cash will be accepted. The remaining purchase price is due within 15 days of confirmation of the sale by the Court. Notice of the confirmation of sale will be forwarded to the successful bidder, along with notification of the remaining amount to be paid.

If I purchase a property which is encumbered by a mortgage or lien, am I responsible for the debt?

No. As part of the tax sale proceedings, all parties of interest are determined and are notified of pending litigation to sell the property for delinquent real estate taxes. Virginia law permits the property to be transferred free and clear of any such encumbrances upon the confirmation of the sale by the Court.

Does TACS offer a financing program or discounts?

No. You are required to secure your own funding to pay for the properties.