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Seized properties for sale in online auction

When it comes to real estate, generally, the available properties for sale are priced at a competitive value for the market. This gives a standard to salable properties that one can expect to pay more for more property for better features. Whether for the sale of residential properties or commercial properties, this tends to hold true. However, occasionally there are instances or opportunities in which a person can purchase a property for less than market value.

Each Wednesday of the month, the city of Baton Rouge holds an auction to sell properties that have been seized. These properties were seized when the owners of the properties did not pay their taxes. To help them sell the properties, the city of Baton Rouge partners with a New Orleans-based company that allows prospective buyers to place bids online for tax adjudicated properties, many abandoned and in a less-than-attractive state. However, a little elbow grease and effort could prove to be the perfect solution for the buyer looking for a deal on a property.

According to the law, the government can hold an auction once someone puts down a deposit, typically $850. The city of Baton Rouge then advertises the sale of property, puts it on the auction block and sells it to the highest bidder. The winning bid covers the price of the title, closing cost and title insurance. The person who pays the deposit gets the money back if he or she doesn't win the auction.

While this may be more work than some would prefer to do when buying a property, but for some people, it can be the perfect opportunity to purchase a property for a great price, maybe even for a price much lower than market value. If a person has an eye on a property that looks to be backlogged on taxes, one can double check this fact in county records oftentimes, and then nominate that property by putting down a 100 percent refundable deposit. Legal help with this process is often recommended as their can be contracts to sign and fine print about the property, like the condition the property is purchased in, is as-is condition.

Source: theadvocate.com, "Baton Rouge properties up for auction Wednesday after owners fail to pay taxes," Nov. 1, 2017

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Dale M. Maas, Attorney at Law
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