Tax Sales in San Diego: Strike Gold in California

Tax Sales are a modern day goldmine, and you can still strike gold in California with Tax Sales in San Diego where you can acquire real estate for pennies on the dollar.

Let’s delve into the intricacies of tax sales in San Diego and provide you with valuable insider tips and strategies. We’ll touch on various aspects of the auction process, property lien considerations, and bidder participation to help you navigate the world of tax sales in San Diego and set you on a path toward success in the competitive San Diego County property market.

To prepare you for post-auction steps, we’ll also address essential details like the time it takes to receive your tax deed, the restrictions on using the property until the deed is in hand, and the importance of securing the property once it is officially yours. With this knowledge in tow, you’ll be well-equipped to make informed decisions, reduce risks, and increase your chances of flourishing from San Diego’s tax sales.

Key Takeaways

  • Tax Sales in San Diego involve tax deeds, not tax liens, and offer the property mortgage-free
  • Conduct thorough research before attending auctions, understand the bidding process and potential lien issues
  • After winning a bid, you must wait until you physically possess the tax deed before you can access the property

Basics of San Diego Tax Sales

tax sales in San Diego are a modern day goldmine

Do Tax Sales in San Diego Offer Tax Lien Certificates or Tax Deeds?

California is not a tax lien state; it’s a tax deed state. In San Diego, California, tax-defaulted properties are sold through tax deeds, which means you’ll acquire the property without a mortgage or a deed of trust.

Properties Sold for Back Taxes at San Diego Tax Deed Auctions

Before heading to a San Diego tax sale auction, be sure to familiarize yourself with all the essential information. Tax sales in San Diego occur when a property is five years behind on taxes, unlike in most other states, where properties are often auctioned off after only one year of tax delinquency.

Key Documents and Terminology for San Diego Tax Sales

When participating in a San Diego tax sale, it’s essential to download and read the terms and conditions from the San Diego County Recorder’s Office. Some important documents and sources to consult include:

Keep in mind that tax sales in San Diego are serious business, and these sources will provide extensive information on the process. Be cautious about remaining liens on properties, such as municipal liens and federal liens, as well as any potential costs associated with participating in the auction.

The Tax Defaulted Auction Process in San Diego

know the rules before bidding at tax sales in San Diego

How to Find Tax Sales in San Diego County

In San Diego, the county tax collector department announces tax sales. To find the details and updated list of tax-delinquent properties, you can visit the San Diego Treasurer -Tax Collector’s website. This source provides access to essential documents and guidelines related to tax sales in San Diego.

Estimating Opening Bids

Starting bid prices at San Diego auctions tend to be higher compared to other states due to the higher real estate prices throughout California and because property taxes can accumulate for five years before the real estate is auctioned. Keep this in mind when you prepare for upcoming tax sales in San Diego.

Regulations on Auction Bidding

To participate in a tax deed auction in San Diego County, you must register and pay a deposit. This deposit is in place to discourage individuals who are not serious about bidding and protects the auctioneers if you fail to follow through on your bid.

The deposit amount will be at least $1,000 plus a small processing fee. The deposit if refundable, while the processing fee is not. However, if you place a bid and fail to follow through with payment for the property, the county will keep your deposit as a penalty.

The Effect of Other Liens on Tax Delinquent Property

Grasping Remaining Liens

A crucial aspect of acquiring a property through tax deed sales is understanding the implications of remaining liens. It’s vital to recognize that despite a tax defaulted property losing its mortgage or deed of trust, it might not be entirely free of other liens.

The Effects of Federal and Municipal Liens

Though there could be various liens to consider when researching a property, two notable ones are federal and municipal liens. Be aware that these liens may remain on the property even after winning it at a tax deed sale.

Both municipal and federal liens can significantly impact the property’s value and profitability. Be sure to consult the county recorder and conduct thorough research to see if there are existing liens on the property before bidding at the auction.

acquiring real estate at tax sales in San Diego County

Receiving Property After a Tax Sale in San Diego

Acquiring the Property Deed

After winning the bid at a tax deed auction, be patient and wait for the actual deed to arrive in the mail, which may take 4 to 6 weeks or even up to 90 days. During this period, you are not allowed to enter the property or make any changes to it. You won’t officially own the property until it’s registered in the county records or you receive the deed in your hand.

Ensuring Property Security

While waiting for the deed, plan for the property’s security. Since you don’t legally own the property until you have obtained the deed, refrain from entering or making alterations. However, consider any potential security measures you can take to protect the property from damage or theft.


Know the rules and do your homework before bidding at tax sales in San Diego County. Being informed about the process can greatly impact your success, so read the terms and conditions for auctions ahead of time.

Make sure you possess a firm understanding of the types of liens that may remain on your purchased property, like federal and municipal liens. This research can save you from unexpected expenses post-purchase.

Bear in mind that you’re expected to pay a deposit before attending tax sales in San Diego. After winning a bid, you won’t receive the tax deed right away and won’t be able to access the property until you do. During the waiting period, consider your security options for your newly acquired property.

Lastly, keep in mind that this guide focused on tax sales in San Diego County, which is just one of more than 3,000 counties in the United States. Expanding your knowledge and staying informed about tax sales across the nation can be advantageous.

If you’d like to know more about tax lien certificates and tax deed investing Ted Thomas provides full support and complete training with home study courses, Q&A webinars, live tutorials, workshops, web classes, personal coaching with certified coaches, and an interactive map and auction calendar research tool that allows you to visit each county online to find the details about upcoming auctions.

Want to earn massive income from bargain real estate investing? Would you like to buy mortgage-free properties for pennies on the dollar? Or earn double-digit interest rates secured by real estate? Then get started today with this Free Gift.

Ted Thomas

Ted Thomas is America’s Leading Authority on Tax Lien Certificates and Tax Deed Auctions, as well as a publisher and author of more than 30 books. His guidebooks on Real Estate have sold in four corners of the world. He has been teaching people just like you for over 30 years how to buy houses in good neighborhoods for pennies on the dollar. He teaches how to create wealth with minimum risk and easy-to-learn methods.

The Ted Thomas Difference:

  • Ted is recognized as America’s Tax Lien Certificate & Tax Deed Authority and has been helping people with investing in tax defaulted properties for over 30 years.
  • Ted has built a team of certified coaches that have 70 combined years of auction experience and are available to his students by phone to guide and mentor you to avoid getting overwhelmed or worse, losing money
  • Ted has ironclad PROOF that what he is teaching you does work. With hundreds of successful students providing testimonials and a 4.9 Google rating which is unheard of in this industry.
  • Ted and his staff don’t hide behind a website; they can be reached during office hours at 321-449-9940.

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