Public Lands | Directions for First-Time Buyers

The Tax-forfeited lands offered for purchase have been processed through the county tax sale. These properties have now been certified from the respective county Chancery Clerk and are currently listed and available for sale through the Secretary of State’s office. You may view, map and/or apply for the property through the website. You may also request paper applications and apply via mail-in.

Only individuals may apply. The only accepted corporations or business entities accepted are those that are banking institutions that held a valid mortgage at the time of the tax sale. A total of two applicants may apply per application.

The state’s tax-forfeited property is customarily offered to the applicant at 50% of the current market value. The market value is determined by the tax assessor’s office in the county in which the property is located. The offer price may vary, depending on the condition of the property. If the property is blighted (see Glossary of Terms), it may be offered at 25% of the value. Percentage estimations are compared to the amount of the back taxes through the current year. All offers made by the applicants are considered as well. Whichever of the amounts is greater is the amount for which the State will set the offer.

The application process will take a minimum of 60 – 90 days. For mail-in filings, the process is a paper process. Only status inquiries are handled over the telephone. All other processing is done in writing. However, with online filings, you may elect to receive paper or electronic correspondence at the time of your filing.

Please contact us for questions relating to submitting an application by sending e-mail to Vicky Pickering or calling 601-359-6373.