How can I obtain a list of properties to be offered at the tax sale?
A list of properties to be offered is contained in the Auction Book that is available from the Office of the Treasurer and Tax Collector. There are several methods by which to obtain the list.
Can I mail in or submit a sealed bid for a property in the public auction sale?
No. This is an oral public auction requiring your presence, or that of your representative, to verbally bid upon the properties.
Can I obtain a property available at the public auction tax sale by paying the delinquent taxes thereon prior to the tentative tax sale date?
No. Legal title to tax-defaulted property subject to power of sale can be obtained through the Treasurer and Tax Collector only by being the successful bidder at the tax sale.
How do I find or see a property I'd like to bid on at the tax sale?
Vacant ("unimproved") land (which accounts for most property offered at our tax sales) usually has no address and therefore its approximate geographic location can be determined through the use of County Assessor platt maps. Exact boundary lines of a property can be determined only by a survey of the property initiated at the purchaser's expense. "Improved" properties frequently (but not always) will bear a "situs" (street) address, making it quite simple to assess the location. A "situs" (street) address does not mean there are improvements on the property or that the improvements are on the sale.
Do all properties with an address have a home on them?
No! An address does not mean there is or was a structure on the property. It does not guarantee that the address shown in the tax sale list is correct or that the structure is part of the sale.
How soon can I take possession of a property after my purchase at the tax sale?
The successful bidder may take possession of a property after the Tax Deed to Purchaser has been recorded.
How is the minimum bid on a tax sale property determined?
State law dictates that the minimum bid for property offered at a public auction tax sale be an amount not less than the total amount necessary to redeem the tax default, plus costs. Except pursuant to Section 3698.5(c) of the California Revenue and Taxation Code, when property interests have been offered at a previous sale and no acceptable bids were received, the Tax Collector may offer that property or property interest at a minimum bid that is less than the amount of the tax default, plus costs.
Is a tax sale publicly advertised?
Yes. State law dictates that the event of a tax sale must be published three (3) times in successive seven (7) day intervals before the tax sale date in a newspaper, or newspapers of general circulation within Los Angeles County. All parcels in the next tax sale will be advertised in various local newspapers, the first publication date being not less than twenty-one (21) days prior to the date of the sale.
When does the right of redemption on a tax-defaulted parcel subject to the power to sell cease?
The right of redemption on a tax-defaulted parcel subject to the Tax Collector's power to sell ceases at the close of business on the last business day prior to the date of sale. There is no extended right of redemption in the State of California as does exist in some others states.
How soon may I begin improvement of the property after my purchase?
There is a one (1) year period of time, after the date the tax deed is executed that a proceeding based on alleged invalidity or irregularity can be commenced, pursuant to Section 3725 of the California Revenue and Taxation Code.
What happens to the properties that do not sell at the auction? Can tax sale properties be purchased directly from the County?
If no acceptable bids are received for a property, it will be offered again at intervals of no more than six years until the property is sold, pursuant to Section 3692 of the California Revenue and Taxation Code. Legal title to tax-defaulted property subject to power of sale can be obtained through the Treasurer and Tax Collector only by being the successful bidder at the tax sale. Additionally, pursuant to Section 3698.5(c) of said code, the Tax Collector may re-offer the property at any time for a minimum bid that is set at the discretion of the Tax Collector and approved by the County Board of Supervisors.