How To Find Other Liens on Homes in Tax Sales?

20 Replies

I just got off the phone with a clerk who said that some of the homes on their county auction list other liens such as mortgages on the tax record. However, I cannot find any information pertaining to her claims. She said to look at the O.N.E. or Owe N.E.? but I'm not sure what that means. Do you know what I should be looking for? 

For anyone buying a tax lien property anywhere, you should always due diligent research that includes checking all taxes (through the county), checking the recorder of deeds where the property is located, checking for occupants in the property, etc. Best to do your research before you buy than to hope for the best. Good luck.

I wouldn't worry about mortgages. The county has to notify any mortgage companies of the pending tax sale and if they choose to do nothing then when the tax deed is issued the mortgage is wiped out.

Pretty much the only liens that would be senior to a tax lien is a IRS or State income tax lien.

All other liens are wiped out when the higher priority tax Deed is issued.

I also have a good working relationship with my county officials. If I were about to get deeded a property that had a Federal or State Lien the county calls me to see if I still want the property. If I decide I don't want the property that void the sale and send my back my investment.

I research (including driving by) over 1000 properties. I don't have time or find the need to do a title search on each property.

John

Originally posted by @Emmett McCarthy:

For anyone buying a tax lien property anywhere, you should always due diligent research that includes checking all taxes (through the county), checking the recorder of deeds where the property is located, checking for occupants in the property, etc. Best to do your research before you buy than to hope for the best. Good luck.

 Thanks Emmett, that is exaxtly why I wrote the post. 

Originally posted by @John Underwood :

I wouldn't worry about mortgages. The county has to notify any mortgage companies of the pending tax sale and if they choose to do nothing then when the tax deed is issued the mortgage is wiped out.

Pretty much the only liens that would be senior to a tax lien is a IRS or State income tax lien.

All other liens are wiped out when the higher priority tax Deed is issued.

I also have a good working relationship with my county officials. If I were about to get deeded a property that had a Federal or State Lien the county calls me to see if I still want the property. If I decide I don't want the property that void the sale and send my back my investment.

I research (including driving by) over 1000 properties. I don't have time or find the need to do a title search on each property.

John

 Thanks John, from my other auctions I do know that the winning bid does erase all previous liens on the property, however after asking the office about this particular auction they said no, you have to check the records for other possible liens that I might be responsible for. 

@Ned Carey @Rhett P.   if your talking about CA tax sale..

yes tax deed state all is wiped out except IRS... and there is no right of redemption.

Alhtough many title co still won't insure the tax collector deed for a number of years would depend on how valuable of a client you were to them.. IE high volume they write title insurance  one off hard to get anyone to do it.

the only way a CA. state tax sale can be overturned is through court order and the person or entity that lost it has to prove that the public notification was flawed.. IE they must post 21 days int he publication in the county if they somehow mess that up then the sale is voidable upon judicial action.. Ask me how I know... I know because it happened to me when we bought the middle of a huge resort complex and they sued and were able to prove the country that year screwed up on the notifications.   Every property lost that year could have been overturned.. but each individual who lost them would have had to bring separate actions.  Live long enough and you will see everything.

@Rhett P State laws vary tremendously. It would help to know where the sale is. and whether it is a tax deed or tax lien state.

In general in tax lien states, all liens are wiped out except IRS liens. And those can usually be dismissed. All interested parties are notified of the tax sale. I do not do any title research before tax lien sales for that reason. Tax lien foreclosures are a good way to clear up a title. 

Back to your original question, some states have online court cases and land records so you can see if there are judgments or liens.

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

@Rhett P well then I just wasted  7 minutes of my life typing that reply.

 Sorry Jay! (Kinda felt the same way)

 FLORIDA but I dont think that is the issue here. I just want to find the area on the tax record that says that if its owned by a bank or not. That is all. 

It may not be on the tax record. It is not in Maryland. It would be in the land records. You need to find the land records. They may not be online in your state or county. That would mean a trip down to the land records office. 

In your area they may not call it "Land Records" it may be something like "Recorders office". But if you ask about the land records, most people in the business will know what you mean and be able to direct you to the right place.

Well here I see that the owner under property detail looks to be a bank in 2011. 

But then in 2012 there is a new owner. My guess is that either the mortgage was paid off or the property was sold to a new owner. I wish there was more clarification here. 

@Rhett P.

First off, "O.N.E." is an O & E which is an Owner's and Encumbrances report, essentially a title search on the current owner for any liens on the property in question.  You can do your search for most properties in Florida online at the respective counties recording and clerk sites. 

A 5 minute search shows that back in 2012, it appears that the property was QCD to the current owner from another individual and no other liens seem to be attached to the owner/property.  But not everything shows up on these sites as there are often misspellings, incorrect classifications, etc.  Therefore it is highly advisable to pull an O&E for properties you seek to purchase, particularly if you are not well versed in title research.  There could be super priority liens as mentioned above such as IRS and state which have rights of redemption periods.  

However, a quick search shows that this property was already redeemed by the current owner on 9/17 and therefore cancelled.   

Originally posted by @Chad U. :

@Rhett P

First off, "O.N.E." is an O & E which is an Owner's and Encumbrances report, essentially a title search on the current owner for any liens on the property in question.  You can do your search for most properties in Florida online at the respective counties recording and clerk sites. 

A 5 minute search shows that back in 2012, it appears that the property was QCD to the current owner from another individual and no other liens seem to be attached to the owner/property.  But not everything shows up on these sites as there are often misspellings, incorrect classifications, etc.  Therefore it is highly advisable to pull an O&E for properties you seek to purchase, particularly if you are not well versed in title research.  There could be super priority liens as mentioned above such as IRS and state which have rights of redemption periods.  

However, a quick search shows that this property was already redeemed by the current owner on 9/17 and therefore cancelled.   

Sweet chad that was what I was looking for. So the O & E is just another way of saying title search? Are all title searches costly? I need to do about 3 or 4. What's a good inexpensive site? I really appreciate your help! 

@Rhett P

@Chad U. gives you very good way of finding title search on FL tax deed properties already. 

One additional info may be helpful for you.

Most of the O&E report on tax deed  properties was done 6-8 months before the sale. So that's why the county clerk said there may be additional liens during this period. If you can go back to the same title company & ask them just do the period between their last report & the sale date. that may save you some cost.

@Rhett P.

You can try easytitlesearch.com  They offer O&E's for as low as $35/each if purchased in bulk, otherwise $55/each.  

NOTE: I am not in anyway affiliated with this company nor receive referrals for recommending them.