Buying houses before tax foreclosure auction (Charlotte, NC area)

3 Replies

Hey Everyone,

I am pretty new to all of this and excited to join the forums. I have been doing some digging on this subject but can't seem to find a ton of information. Hoping I could find anyone here that could help maybe point me in the right direction or give me a few pointers. 

I have been researching tax foreclosures in my area and also surrounding areas, looking for decent properties that may be listed in tax foreclosure but don't have a date set yet. For several properties, I have identified the owners, how much they owe in taxes, and estimated values of their property. 

My question is, what is involved in the process for me to buy the property from them? Let me put out an example:

House at 123 Long Street with estimated value of $100k is listed as being in tax foreclosure with no sale date set yet. I find that the owner has not paid taxes for five years and owes ~$15k in taxes to the county. I have contacted the owner and instead of letting the property go to auction where they lose it and receive nothing, they have agreed to sell it to me for say $5,000. 

Where does the process go from here? Specifically: 

1. Do I need an attorney to write up a contract prior to any money exchanging hands? 

2. I assume I can't purchase the property until the taxes have been paid due to the lien, so how do I protect myself from providing the funds to pay the taxes and then having the seller walk away from the deal?

3. Is a quit claim deed the only thing required to transfer the title?

4. A close family friend of mine is a real estate agent in the area, will this provide me any possible advantages?

5. Any other risks I should be aware of?

If you are in the Charlotte, NC area and have experience in this field I would be more than happy to take you out for dinner and pick your brain.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Looking forward to speaking with anyone on the matter.


You need to check the title with an attorney to make sure they don't have any additional liens on the property. This should be among the first steps you take and only costs around $250 depending on who you use. It will take care of a couple of your questions. Always have a contract in place prior to exchanging any form of payment. If you don't you are just giving them money on a promise. An agent would help with giving you info on the area and stats for the local market. You will also need vendors and other connections for the rehab or operations of the property. 

I can send you some info regarding the process of purchasing a tax foreclosure from the auction also.