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 [22] 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 and Comptroller. A deputy clerk then conducts the sale or public auction in accordance with Florida Statutes. If you have any questions please call Leon County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller Tax Deeds Staff at 850-606-4020 or Clerk_TaxDeedAdmin@leoncountyfl.gov.

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Tax Deed Sale Procedures

Before the Auction:

The Tax Deed Office of the Clerk of Court and Comptroller notifies property owners that their property identified on the Tax Certificate will be sold 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.

  1. All owners and lien holders receive notice of the sale via certified mail.
  2. The Clerk is required by Florida Statute to advertise each sale once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the public auction.
  3. 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.

At the Auction:

  • The opening (minimum) bid is posted.
  • 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 property 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 certificate holder.
  • If the tax certificate holder chooses not to take title to the property and pays the cost of resale, the property will be re-auctioned
  • If there are no bidders higher than the opening bid on the second sale and the tax certificate holder does not wish to take title or pay the cost of resale, the property is placed on a list of lands available for sale.
  • If unsold after 3 years, the property escheats to the County.

Leon County Clerk Gwen Marshall thanks you for visiting this site. Please read the following:

YOU MUST DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH FOR THE PROPERTY INVOLVED.THIS IS A BUYER BEWARE SALE. DO NOT attempt to purchase property at the auction unless a thorough investigation has been made as to the exact location, desirability and usefulness of the property. Parcels are sold on an as is basis, and the Clerk makes no representation or warranty, real or implied, as to the property's condition or suitability for any use. The Clerk in no way assumes any responsibility, implied or otherwise, that the properties are in compliance with zoning ordinances, or conform to building codes and permits, or are free from latent or patent defects. An investigation may reveal that the property is in a street or alley, in a flood plain, landlocked, contaminated with toxic waste, dedicated to public use for street or other purposes; or improvements which may be shown on the tax sale list no longer exist at the time of auction, or a lien may have been or will be placed on the property after the date of the encumbrance report.

The Clerk's Office assumes no responsibility for any encumbrances (judgments, mortgages and other liens) on any property offered for sale. It is in your best interest to have a Title search done by an attorney or Title Company. However, you are urged to search the Official Records. Although there is an encumbrance report in the tax deed records this report may not be relied upon as a title search and additional activity may occur between the date of the report and the date of the sale. The Clerk's office assumes no responsibility for any inaccuracy contained in the tax deed files, or posted to the website for upcoming sales or lands available lists.

It is possible you will have to take legal action to get possession of the property. Until possession is granted by the Court, you may not have access to the property without permission of the prior owner. The Clerk's Office assumes no responsibility for the availability of any property offered for sale.

The purchaser of the property will be issued a Tax Deed as soon after the sale as possible. The property owner has the right to redeem tax certificates on property at any time before a tax deed is executed and delivered to the highest bidder at a tax deed sale. If the property is redeemed before the Tax Deed is issued and recorded, the successful bidder will be refunded any money that has been paid.

Governmental liens and judgments survive the issuance of the tax deed and are satisfied to the fullest extent possible with any overbid monies from the sale. Liens of governmental units not satisfied in full survive the issuance of the tax deed. One example of a lien which will survive a tax deed sale is any lien for installments of taxes and special assessments, which installments will become payable upon the secured roll after the time of the sale. Should you have any questions concerning what liens and judgments survive the tax deed sale, consult an attorney. A Tax Deed does not provide clear title to the property. The successful bidder will have to make arrangements with the previous owner, or open a Quiet Title suit to acquire clear title. Please consult an attorney if for more information regarding the Quiet Title process. Leon County Clerk of the Courts DOES NOT WARRANT TITLE CONVEYED BY TAX DEED.

When considering tax deed properties, please be advised that ALL PROPERTIES ARE SOLD BUYER BEWARE. All potential bidders are responsible to know what they are bidding on prior to the Tax Deed sale, and they are encouraged to utilize all county offices to do their research. The Clerk's office is only responsible for scheduling and conducting the sales. All persons bidding on Tax Deeds are strongly urged to read Chapter 197 of the Florida Statutes and Chapter 12D-13 of the Florida Administrative Code. If you have questions about your legal rights regarding applying for a Tax Deed, Tax Deed sales, or land title resulting from the issuance of any Tax Deed, you are urged to consult with an attorney.

By entering this site, I acknowledge that I have read and agreed to the above disclaimer.

For a list of lands available, click here.
For a list of Surplus Tax Deeds, click here.
For the next auction date and time please click here.
For Frequently Asked Questions about tax deeds, click here

Tax Deed Sales FAQ's (850) 606-4020

Are the tax deed sales advertised in a local newspaper?

Yes, the tax deed sales are advertised in the legal advertisements section of the Tallahassee Advertiser. The Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller is required by Florida Statutes to advertise each sale once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the public auction. In addition, the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller office posts notices of upcoming tax deed auctions on the Internet at the following address: http://www.clerk.Leon.fl.us.

Does a tax deed sale provide a marketable title?

Generally, when any lands are sold for the nonpayment of taxes, the title may not be a marketable title. If you are the successful bidder, you may need to file a "quiet title" civil lawsuit to clear the title to the property. You may wish to research or seek legal advice on any property for which you are considering bidding before the tax deed sale.

How can I find out if there are any liens or encumbrances on a property coming up for tax deed sale?

An ownership and encumbrance report is provided in the file maintained on each property to be sold at a tax deed sale. The tax deed files are kept in the office of the tax Deed clerk located in the Clerk's Finance Department, Leon County Government Annex, Suite 750, 315 S. Calhoun Street, Tallahassee. Click here for our current hours of operation. Anyone may take notes from these files or the tax deed clerk will make a copy for a fee.

As a courtesy, the clerk posts on the webpage information on the properties for sale for county taxes. Upcoming tax deed sales lists and the list of lands available are posted to the Clerk's website at www.clerk.Leon.fl.us.

The files can be viewed via the webpage by clicking here.

The Clerk and Comptroller's office assumes no responsibility for any inaccuracies contained in the files, or posted to the website for upcoming sales or lands available lists.

How long does the property owner have to

The property owner may redeem the property until the time the successful bidder renders payment AND a tax deed is recorded or issued. All current and delinquent taxes and other costs associated with the tax deed sale must be paid in full to the Leon County Tax Collector by cash, cashier's check or money order.

If I am the successful bidder at a tax deed sale, am I entitled to immediate possession of the property after a tax deed has been issued to me?

Yes, according to Florida Statute 197.562, the grantee of any tax deed shall be entitled to the immediate possession of the lands described in the deed upon payment of successful bid amount.

What action must I take if I am the successful bidder at the sale?

If the approved security was posted earlier, the tax deed will be completed and notarized before moving on to the next parcel so the successful bidder may record the tax deed as soon as possible. Otherwise, the successful bidder is required to submit a non-refundable $200 cash deposit immediately after being declared the successful bidder at the sale, and within 24 hours of the sale pay: (1) the bid amount less the $200 cash deposit and (2) documentary stamps and recording fees. The bid amount must be in the form of cash, cashier's check or money order payable to the Clerk of the Circuit Court. You will be asked to provide to the deputy clerk the name(s) in which you wish the tax deed to be issued. Remember that the property owner can redeem the property at the Tax Collector's office until the time full payment is made by the successful bidder AND a tax deed is recorded. Once the successful bidder records the tax deed, the property cannot be redeemed.

What are some things that I should know before the sale?

There is no pre-registration required in order to participate in the bidding. Potential bidders MAY post security (bank guarantee, letter of credit or cashier's check) with the Clerk's Finance Department prior to the auction to cover any personal/business check(s) used in payment of the bid amount(s) at the auction. You or a representative must be physically present at the sale to bid on the property. You should research the properties before you bid. It is very important to understand what you are purchasing at the sale and whether there may be any liens on the property. If no security is posted, a non-refundable $200 cash deposit is required for each successful bid.

What are tax deed sales?

Tax deed sales deal with the selling of property to the highest bidder at a public auction in order to recover delinquent property taxes. A tax deed sale occurs after an owner of a tax certificate applies to the Tax Collector for a tax deed after the tax certificate has been held for the statutory period of 22 months from date of delinquency.

What happens if a property receives no bids?

Depending on who filed the application (county or non-county certificate holder) and the homestead status of the property, the parcel will be placed on the "List of Lands Available for Taxes", sold to the non-county held certificate holder, or readvertised for sale.

What if I am the successful bidder and fail to return payment within 24 hours?

According to Florida Statute 197.542(1), the clerk may refuse to recognize the bid of any person who has previously bid and refused, for any reason, to honor such bid. In other words, you would not be allowed to bid at any future tax deed sales in this county for a period of 12 months from the time you defaulted on your bid. The property would be re-advertised and offered for sale no later than 30 days from the date the sale was canceled. All costs of the sale will be paid from the cash deposit with any remaining funds applied toward the opening bid.

What if I need additional information regarding a tax deed sale?

The Property Appraiser's office can provide you with information on any structural improvements on the property. Additional information is provided on this page. The laws governing tax deed sales can be found in Chapter 197 of the Florida Statutes. The rules of the Florida Department of Revenue regarding tax deed sales can be found in their administrative code beginning at 12D-13.030.

What liens or encumbrances survive against a property after it is sold at a tax deed sale?

Governmental liens and judgments survive the issuance of a tax deed and are satisfied to the fullest extent possible with any overbid monies from the sale. Governmental liens not satisfied in full survive the issuance of a tax deed.

When and where are these tax deed sales held?

Please call the Leon County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller Finance Department at 850-606-4020 for information. For the next auction date and time, please click here.

Where can I find information regarding the sale of tax certificates?

Tax certificate information can be obtained from the Tax Collector's office (850 488-4735). Or at www.leontaxcollector.net.

Who conducts the sale?

A deputy clerk employed by the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller conducts the sale or public auction in accordance with Florida Statute 197.502[5].



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