Tax Deed Sales are the sale of property to the highest bidder at a public auction. Properties are sold to recover delinquent property taxes. A tax deed sale occurs when the owner of a Tax Certificate applies for a tax deed application after holding the tax certificate at least twenty-two  months from the date of delinquency. The tax deed application is filed with the County Tax Collector who then forwards the application to the Clerk of the Circuit Court. A deputy clerk then conducts the sale or public auction in accordance with Florida Statutes. Tax Deed Sales are held in the Commission Chambers on the fifth floor of the Leon County Courthouse. The Courthouse is located at 301 S. Monroe Street, Tallahassee, Florida.
Tax Deed Sale Procedures
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Before the Auction:
The Tax Deed Office of the Clerk of Courts notifies property owners that their property identified on the Tax Certificate will be so
ld at public auction if they do not pay the delinquent property taxes, interest and other costs related to the sale.
The Clerk's Office is required to notify property owners and any party holding a recorded lien on the property in three ways.
At the Auction:
- All owners and lien holders receive notice of the sale via certified mail.
- The Clerk is required by Florida Statute to advertise each sale once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the public aucti
- The Sheriff's Office serves the owner, or if the owner is not found, posts a warning notice of sale on the property at least 20
days to prior to the auction.
- The opening (minimum) bid is announced.
- The property is sold to the highest bidder and upon payment of the amount bid and all fees a tax deed is recorded and the proper
ty is transferred to the bidder.
- All liens against the property (including mortgages) with the exception of any government liens are wiped out by the sale.
- If no bids are received that are higher than the opening bid the property is struck from the auction and offered to the tax cert
- If the tax certificate holder chooses not to take title to the property, the Clerk's Office must immediately re-advertise a new sale
(only one advertisement) to be held no later than 30 days from the date the deed was declined.
- If there are no bidders higher than the opening bid on the second sale and the tax certificate holder still does not wish to tak
e title, the property is placed on a list of lands available for sale.
- If unsold after 7 years, the property is turned over to the County.