State :: Jurisdiction :: Sale
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California is also a true deed state with no redemption period and no interest rate or penalty. However, even though there is no redemption period after the sale, the owner (or a lien holder) has 1 year to initiate proceedings to challenge the validity or irregularity of the tax sale. The county treasurer/tax collector conducts tax sales. The minimum bid price is the total amount necessary to redeem, plus the costs of sale. Properties that are not sold may be re-offered within 90 days, or at the next scheduled sale at a minimum price that the tax collector deems appropriate. A “tax deed to purchaser” that conveys title free of all encumbrances of any kind existing before the sale, with certain exceptions as stated in Section 3712 of the California Revenue and Taxation Code, is issued to the successful bidder. You must be registered in order to bid and, for some of the larger sales, you may need to register a few days ahead of time, so check with the county tax collector. It is advantageous to register early for the sale because there may be limited seating and usually the early registrants get better seats. This can be important at an auction where many people may be calling out the same number and it is up to the tax collector or auctioneer to pick the winning bidder among them.Most counties in California have their tax sales online. These sales are conducted by Bid4Assets.com and registration is done on their website. In order to be eligible to bid on a parcel, a deposit of 10% of the minimum bid is required. Because of California state law, the property does not revert to the next highest bidder. All sales are final and there are absolutely no refunds. Be careful bidding online, a mistake can be costly. Legal action is taken against any bidder who defaults and such bidders will be banned from future auctions. Due to the extreme competition of online auctions, these sales have become very competitive. Most of the properties that do sell at these auctions sell way above the minimum bid.
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California Revenue and Taxation Code, Division 1, Part 6, "Tax Sales," Part 7, "Redemption," and Part 7.5, "Tax Certificates." The basic procedures for conducting sales of tax certificates are established by local tax collectors (Sec. 4528). Unredeemed tax-defaulted property is sold to the highest bidder (Sec. 3693), subject to a minimum price requirement (Sec. 3698.5). If there are no acceptable bids at the attempted sale, the tax collector shall attempt to sell the property at intervals of no more than six years until the property is sold (Sec. 3692).
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