Tax Sale Property...Do I really need to hire an Attorney?

10 Replies

I purchased my first tax sale certificate and would like to know if it’s 100% necessary to use an attorney to foreclose on the property? I’ve done my research and honestly feel I can handle the process on my own. 

What are your thoughts? BTW, I’m new here 😀. Thanks in advance

@Khloe Renee Williams Yes you can but it is not recommended.  

In my area, Baltimore City, the courts are constantly kicking out cases that have some technical error. Often the courts are making errors themselves. My attorney has to send them documentation and court case precedents and quote unrelated areas of law to show them how they are in error. 

Another important issue is you will never get title insurance if you do the work yourself. This means you will not be able to sell the property nor will you be able to refinance the property, at least not for many years. If you foreclose on a property and want to keep it as a rental then that is OK but just be aware of the limitations. 

Lastly in some areas, Maryland for example, if a property owner redeems, they must reimburse your legal fees. So you are saving nothing by doing it yourself. (If you are not an attorney you cannot collect attorney fees even though you did the work.)

I have been doing tax sale for 14 years and know tax sale law better than 99% of all attorneys in MD.  Yet I wouldn't do it myself and would only trust it to an attorney that specializes in that area of the law.

Whenever you plan to purchase a tax lien certificate, you must factor in average attorney costs and other possible costs such as maintenance (to avoid weed liens, etc.) and future taxes.  

Your possible legal expenses:
Noticing
Title Work
Petition for Tax Deed
Quiet Title Action
Contract review or templates.

Originally posted by @Ned Carey :

@Khloe Renee Williams Yes you can but it is not recommended.  

In my area, Baltimore City, the courts are constantly kicking out cases that have some technical error. Often the courts are making errors themselves. My attorney has to send them documentation and court case precedents and quote unrelated areas of law to show them how they are in error. 

Another important issue is you will never get title insurance if you do the work yourself. This means you will not be able to sell the property nor will you be able to refinance the property, at least not for many years. If you foreclose on a property and want to keep it as a rental then that is OK but just be aware of the limitations. 

Lastly in some areas, Maryland for example, if a property owner redeems, they must reimburse your legal fees. So you are saving nothing by doing it yourself. (If you are not an attorney you cannot collect attorney fees even though you did the work.)

I have been doing tax sale for 14 years and know tax sale law better than 99% of all attorneys in MD.  Yet I wouldn't do it myself and would only trust it to an attorney that specializes in that area of the law.

"I have been doing tax sale for 14 years and know tax sale law better than 99% of all attorneys in MD. Yet I wouldn't do it myself and would only trust it to an attorney that specializes in that area of the law."  I love it.  You came to the bottom line.  

Hello All, Thanks for ypur responses. I decided to work with an attorney. The property owner redeemed one of his properties that were included in MD tax sale. I have a feeling he’s going to redeem the land certificate that I purchased as well. 

Originally posted by @Ned Carey :

@Khloe Renee Williams Yes you can but it is not recommended.  

In my area, Baltimore City, the courts are constantly kicking out cases that have some technical error. Often the courts are making errors themselves. My attorney has to send them documentation and court case precedents and quote unrelated areas of law to show them how they are in error. 

Another important issue is you will never get title insurance if you do the work yourself. This means you will not be able to sell the property nor will you be able to refinance the property, at least not for many years. If you foreclose on a property and want to keep it as a rental then that is OK but just be aware of the limitations. 

Lastly in some areas, Maryland for example, if a property owner redeems, they must reimburse your legal fees. So you are saving nothing by doing it yourself. (If you are not an attorney you cannot collect attorney fees even though you did the work.)

I have been doing tax sale for 14 years and know tax sale law better than 99% of all attorneys in MD.  Yet I wouldn't do it myself and would only trust it to an attorney that specializes in that area of the law.

 not best use of your time... 

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :
Originally posted by @Ned Carey:

@Khloe Renee Williams Yes you can but it is not recommended.  

In my area, Baltimore City, the courts are constantly kicking out cases that have some technical error. Often the courts are making errors themselves. My attorney has to send them documentation and court case precedents and quote unrelated areas of law to show them how they are in error. 

Another important issue is you will never get title insurance if you do the work yourself. This means you will not be able to sell the property nor will you be able to refinance the property, at least not for many years. If you foreclose on a property and want to keep it as a rental then that is OK but just be aware of the limitations. 

Lastly in some areas, Maryland for example, if a property owner redeems, they must reimburse your legal fees. So you are saving nothing by doing it yourself. (If you are not an attorney you cannot collect attorney fees even though you did the work.)

I have been doing tax sale for 14 years and know tax sale law better than 99% of all attorneys in MD.  Yet I wouldn't do it myself and would only trust it to an attorney that specializes in that area of the law.

 not best use of your time... 

In FL, there’s nothing to do.....you fill out an application, the clerk tells you how much money to send in, they do all the work. In other states it’s like foreclosing on a mtg....not great for DIY.