It’s a common misconception that all counties within a state operate by the same uniform laws and regulations. Yes, state law governs the county tax auctions, but how those laws are interpreted is not uniform. This is especially noticeable when it comes to how the auctions are conducted. This is not to mention that the lists of course vary significantly from county to county, from month to month!
So when sitting down to pick a market to invest in, us the state summary in the Ultimate Listing Service as a general guideline as to how that state works. Before picking a market, consider your desires or limitations. Do you know someone how lives there? Can you drive to some of the auctions or fly if they aren’t online? Is there business growth or reduction? What about over the counter liens or deeds? Once you have decided a state meets your needs go a step further and see if there are some upcoming auctions.
Give yourself time to research the auction list, especially if you are in the midst learning our 14-step research process. Before jumping right into researching properties, make sure you study the counties auction rules, they very well could be a deal breaker despite the state seeming to suit you overall. Don’t stop there, look at other county rules, and give county officials a call to clear up any questions you may have. This needs to be done before starting in any new market so you can be sure you not only know how to participate, but that you want to in the first place.
Florida is a good example of how counties can vary in the same state. Florida is known for their online auctions, however not all counties there have online auctions. If you are local or can travel consider researching and attending their live auctions. Live auctions are an excellent learning experience, and attendance can be slimmer when compared to online auctions. If you choose to attend a deed auction and win a property, recording fees and wait time for the deed can be another point of difference. Most differences can be easily identified if you take a moment to study the rules and get on the phone with a county official, never plan on bidding at an auction if all of your questions are not answered. Protect yourself with the pursuit of information.
Use the tools and resources that the US Tax Lien Association has taught you to invest. Leave no stone unturned, and don’t give up.