‘Gated communities try new strategy to eliminate $1 lots’

  • Posted on :July 31, 2016 in deals

‘Gated communities try new strategy to eliminate $1 lots’

via Fatwallet.com Hot Deals

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Although this is a “local” story, may be of interest to FWF members investing in tax liens, etc. —

At least two gated golf communities are attempting a workaround to their $1 lot problem, purchasing lots within their gates and building spec homes on them.

Belfair and Berkeley Hall, two Bluffton communities, are using the new strategy in hopes of ending the cycle of lots being sold for $1. If the lot does not sell, and the owner doesnt pay taxes on it, the property is auctioned off at Beaufort Countys delinquent tax sale for the minimum tax amount.

That property is then up for sale to buyers who are often unaware of the exclusive neighborhoods fees and dues. Annual dues are typically between $14,000 and $20,000, depending on the neighborhood. And onetime initiation fees push the price tag up as much as $19,500.

The new owners sometimes default on payments, sending the property back to the tax sale the following year.

Beaufort County treasurer Maria Walls has witnessed many uninformed investors make impulse buys on the lots located in some of Beaufort Countys premiere neighborhoods at past tax sales.

Last year, she and some of the gated communities leaders led a buyer-beware campaign to educate potential buyers about the fees. Belfair and Berkeley Hall ran three-quarter-page advertisements in four issues of The Island Packet leading up to the October tax sale.

Adrian Morris, general manager of Berkeley Hall, said the campaign was effective in reducing the number of people bidding on the lots.

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