What is a Tax Sale?

Municipalities and Towns throughout Nova Scotia collect taxes to pay for services provided to citizens such as roads, snow removal and recreation.  When homeowners or businesses do not pay these taxes, the Town works with the owner to make payment arrangements.  If that process fails, the last resourse for the Town is a Tax Sale, whereby the property is sold to recover the taxes.

With the upcoming Sale by Auction, also known as a Tax Sale, taking place on January 22, 2020, we would like to give some insight regarding the tax sale process. What follows below is the auction procedure once a property has been entered into the tax sale. Proceedings after full notice has been given to the property owners and any other parties with an interest in the property such as judgment creditors.

  • The property for sale will be advertised in the newspaper two (2) times; once at least 30 days prior and a second within 30 days of the Tax Sale date;
  • Current property owners have up to the day before (January 21, 2020) to come in and pay the outstanding taxes and expenses on the property to remove it from the tax sale;
  • In order to participate in the tax sale, interested parties must preregister at the Town Office;
  • On the day of the auction, registered individuals will have the opportunity to bid on properties that still have a balance outstanding against them;
  • The minimum bid will be set at the property taxes outstanding, plus interest and expenses of conducting the Tax Sale;
  • Cash, debit or certified cheque in the amount of the minimum bid is required to be paid by the successful bidder at the time of the auction;
  • The difference between the amount of the successful bid and the minimum bid (if any) is due to the Town within three (3) business days of the auction;
  • If the additional amount is not received within three (3) business days, the expenses of the resale shall be deducted from the deposit and the balance, if any, shall be refunded after the resale is held;
  • Any property eligible for redemption by the original property owner must be redeemed within six months of the date of sale for the auction price plus interest and expenses, all of which are set out in section 152 of the Municipal Government Act (MGA);
  • No right of redemption exists for properties for which, at the time of sale, taxes on the land are in arrears for more than six years;
  • If redeemed, the purchaser is refunded the total sum they paid plus the interest accumulated at the rate of 10% from the date of sale to the date of redemption;
  • All properties that are sold at tax sale are “as is, where is” and there are no representations or warranties of any kind made to by Town to any purchaser respecting lands and premises offered for sale, including marketability of title, and geophysical or environmental suitability of the lands and premises; Any questions or additional information required, feel free to reach out to the Town Office either in person or by phone (902)-485-4372.