Property owners are required to pay property taxes on an annual basis to the County Tax Collector. If the owner neglects to pay his/her property taxes by the end of May following the taxable year, a "Tax Certificate" is sold by the Tax Collector. A tax certificate is held for a minimum of two years and a maximum of seven years. At any time between the second and seventh year, the certificateholder may request the sale of the property to satisfy the certificate. The property is placed up for bid and auctioned.
Effective July 1, 2011, Florida law has changed to provide the following:
- For each piece of property purchased, the successful high bidder must pay a non-refundable deposit equal to 5 percent of the final bid or $200.00, whichever is greater, at the time of the sale. If the successful bidder fails to immediately post the deposit, the bid is deemed invalid, and the bidding will start over.
- If tax certificates exist or if delinquent taxes accrued after the filing of the tax deed application, the amount required to redeem such tax certificates or pay such delinquent taxes must now be included in the opening bid. Therefore, the redemption amount and the opening bid are subject to change without notice. Call the Polk County Tax Collector's Office at (863) 534-4700 to determine the current redemption amount. The opening bid is available on the Clerk's web site or by contacting our Tax Deed Department, here.
- In accordance with section 192.0105(3), Florida Statutes, the property owner can redeem the property up until the time the high bidder remits full payment to the Clerk.
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Tax Deeds Sales Rules
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