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Northeastern Pennsylvania Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, Pocono area
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Old 03-03-2008, 11:14 AM
Location: Jersey
253 posts, read 693,481 times
Reputation: 105



I know that there's a way to find out what pieces of property are up for sale for back taxes, but not sure how to do that. Does anyone know how to find out that information if you're not local and can't get to the county courthouse? Is there some link to this information online? Interested in Wayne and Pike County. Also, if you've purchased land this way, what's involved in the process? Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 03-03-2008, 11:43 AM
Location: The Poconos
910 posts, read 2,099,689 times
Reputation: 226
Yup, you can go on both the wayne and the pike county websites and go under 'tax claim'. that will show you the different types of tax sales and lists/dates/prices of the land.
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Old 03-03-2008, 11:43 AM
Location: Greater Scranton Area
29 posts, read 82,563 times
Reputation: 32
Someone more experienced than myself can probably get into more detail about the process. I know that is imperative you do your homework before you go to the sale (i.e. title search).

From people I've spoken with that have done this, be sure you know if you are purchasing the entire 'bundle of rights' or just one of the interests in the property. There's not much sense in paying the back taxes on a property and then placing your own lien on the property. What if they don't try to sell it for thirty years?!

The office you need to investigate is the Tax Claim Bureau at the county level. I can't speak about other counties, but Lackawanna's system was archaic to say the least. It may have improved with the changing of the guard but I doubt it. They may have a list of properties that are going for an upset sale.
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Old 03-03-2008, 12:25 PM
50 posts, read 136,571 times
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The county tax claim site is the way to go but you must do your homework, some still carry liens, mortgage and unpaid back taxes. There is also this site which can get you into any Gis site for Pa. Where is asks for owner or name write in bank or tax, these are foreclosed properties and homes that are bank owned. These are most often bought back from the tax claim bureau and once the bank owns them all back taxes, mortgage, liens are in the hands of the bank. You can get an address look at the location and contact the bank and they are overloaded with foreclosures now and willing to take a low bid at times. GISPilot.com - Pennsylvania State and City GIS links also in the owner or name box write in tax claim these are the one to look for liens or mortgages with these you get to keep all owed on the property.
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Old 03-03-2008, 12:33 PM
Location: Greater Scranton Area
29 posts, read 82,563 times
Reputation: 32
Good point PLFM.

First stop, Assessor's office. The most definitive property identifier is the parcel number, commonly referred to as the APN# or PIN#. It's like a social security number for the parcel.

Good luck.
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