It is possible but… - Posted by BRnBA
Posted by BRnBA on December 04, 1999 at 12:48:25:
it is a lot of work. Certificate states like Oklahoma are a perfect example for this strategy. First off, it is a VERY small percentage of the properties with
delinquent taxes that can actually be aquired this way.
Common sense will tell you that if the property is worth much, it will usually be redeemed. That said, the best strategy is to figure out which ones are most likely NOT to be redeemed. When the County Treasurer sends out the tax bill a small percentage of them are returned undeliverable. They can be undeliverable for a number of reasons…left no forwarding address is usually the reason but whatever it is, these are the most likely not to redeem. The strategy is to get your hands on the list of undeliverables and buy those certificates at the sale. Some counties hold the sale ‘by the book’ and that is just fine. At least one county that I know of makes it’s own rules and sells them first come first served, meaning whoever is in the front of the line gets first choice, and that is ok too if you know to get there early because most people don’t know that is how it works. There are some problems though, not the least of which is corruption in the courthouse, ‘and that’s all I have to say about that’, in my best Forest Gump voice. The county treasurer and his/her employees won’t let you see that (shoe box) full of undelivered mail but somehow their friends and relatives know which certificates to buy.
You can however create your own list of undeliverables by bulk mailing. The big problem with that is that most counties are not computerized so it is a long and laborious task with a small window of time in which to operate ie. the list of delinquent properties comes out 30 days before the sale. Yes it can be done, but I would only recommend it as ‘in addition to’ other more reliable strategies, meaning there are easier and faster ways to make money in the REI arena.