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Tax Liens An Overview

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The unpaid property taxes are actually what is referred to the tax portion of the term. Lien is actually defined in the dictionary as:

“The legal claim of one person upon the property of another person to secure the payment of a debt or the satisfaction of an obligation.”

Tax lien uses an individuals property as collateral to ensure the settlement of a tax-related debt owed to another person or entity. While initially that debt is owed to the government that imposes the taxes, after a set amount of time these government agencies will auction unpaid debts to recoup their own expenses more quickly, opening an opportunity for savvy investors.

Tax liens are a result of the federal government and are not only 100% statutory, yet the concerns of the investors are protected by each state that they buy it from. To their benefit, State governments will then be the one responsible for the entire tax lien process.

Tax lien certificates are sold at tax sales conducted by a county or municipal official. It is completely open and safe because tax lien investors actually pay them the required taxes.

If the lien has already been handed over to the investor from the government, the investor will then be entitled to control the stated interest that is made by the government. The interest can reach from 8% to 25% per annum.

To be fair, the property owner is given a time frame wherein he/she should pay a stated amount of the tax, interest and other related fees. But if the owner fails to pay on the given time, the investor will now have the right to foreclose the property because of the lien.

Investing in tax liens is a highly profitable investment. This is because you do not need to have a very big sum of money to be able to invest and it does not also require you to pay for any brokerage fees. Thus, tax lien certificates are very attractive to many.

Tax lien certificate is an investment that requires your attention and time. If it happens that you have made good purchases and have research the properties that are attached to the tax liens, then you would most likely be happier to acquire a property through foreclosure. However, the list of properties that you will usually have before the sale from the tax office is minimal only, in which it would only tell less about the property. Most often than not, you’ll only acquire the tax ID, amount owed and owner of record.

The first step that you should make prior to buying properties is to take a look at the assessment information on your desired property and locate it. Visiting and seeing the property is always the best move because this would assure you that the assessment information has been kept updated. Also, see to it that the property you are acquiring worth more than the amount that has been owed for back taxes. Bear in mind that there is a chance that you have to pay the taxes on the property throughout the period of redemption (if the property does not redeem) before you can actually foreclose on it or apply for a deed.

Yet, if you invest in tax lien, foreclosing properties will surely make you gain more profit and is several times bigger than that of your initial investment.

Steve Jonas is an expert in tax lien investing. For more information on tax liens visit theNational Association of Tax Lien Investors

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