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By: Ted Thomas

Tax Lien Certificates are the perfect investment vehicle for everyone that wants a low risk and the safety of investing with the government. Tax Lien Certificate and Tax deeds don’t require years of study, and a person can start with less than $500. There are numerous tools; some are basic some are advanced, that a person needs to learn. It’s all very easy and can be accomplished in 3-4 weeks.

Basic Research Tools

The more you know, the better off you will be when it comes time to attend your first auction and start bidding on Tax Defaulted properties. As I’ve mentioned before, the essential information is knowing the who, what, when, and where.

When it comes to finding this information, you have several options. One is to refer to my course materials such as the Comprehensive Tax Lien Directory, Complete Tax Deed Directory, and my Platinum Tax Lien Certificate and Tax Deed Directory software on flash drive.

These days, using a computer is another great way of gathering information. Many counties now post the list of delinquent properties on a website along with the bidding requirements, the date and time of the auction, etc. online.

For the data you cannot find elsewhere, it’s helpful to give the appropriate agency or person a call, so obviously a phone is an important tool.

Transportation is another big one. Whenever possible, you will want to drive by any parcels you are considering purchasing. While you’re there, take pictures of the property and add them, along with your written notes, to a notebook (or other type of device/recordkeeping system, such as a iPhone, laptop or iPad) entry. Don’t rely on your memory to supply the details at a later date.

A final basic tool that everyone needs is time. Don’t rush into a deal without having completed the proper research. Take the time to delve deep into the specifics of a parcel before buying. Do your homework and determine if there might possibly be an environmental contaminant on the property, other liens that will compete against the property tax lien, zoning restrictions, etc.

To recap, the basic tools you need are:
– A directory of tax lien and tax deed offices
– Computer
– Phone
– Vehicle
– Camera
– Notebook or Software
– Time

Advanced Tools

In all cases, you will need to do research on the parcel going to the defaulted auction. Many times the list of properties you obtain includes little more than a tax ID number, perhaps a legal description, and the amount of taxes in arrears. For most of us, that’s not enough to determine if a parcel has any value. You need to get an address so either you or someone you are partnering with can do a drive by; the owner’s name is a big help, too.

In order to get that missing data, the best place to start is at the county office (usually either the Treasurer or Assessor). They may have a cross-reference tool you can use free or pay a small fee for.

There are sites online that aggregate this data. One is

Human Resource Tools

Not only do you need tools to help you with your tax lien certificates and tax deed investments, you need people, too. These people are your partners who function in a variety of ways to help you with the things you can’t do or can’t provide.

Knowing an attorney you trust can be a lifesaver. He or she will come in handy to advise you on various laws and possible action you can take to defend your assets against worst case scenarios.

A realtor is vitally important. A good real estate agent can give you comparable values, give you an assessment of future values in a particular area, and also easily dig up information on a property that you might have difficulty getting access to.

A home inspector and appraiser are two more human resources that are handy to have available when you need them. After you’ve brought your property, they can help you assess current condition and provide their estimate of value.

And finally a group of people who are willing to provide funds for your investments is always helpful, particularly if your capital stash is limited. Often the difference between getting a great deal or not depends on whether or not you’ve got the cash when you need it. At the Ted Thomas 3 Day Auction Preparation workshop we will show you how to get access to funds to do your Tax Lien Certificate And Tax Defaulted Property deals.

When it comes to being successful with tax lien certificate and tax deed investing, remember that old adage, “to be forewarned is to be forearmed.” There are many tools available and you would be wise to use each and every one.

Remember, too, that you are not going it alone. Join our coaching call every Wednesday night and learn from those who have been there, done that, and made great profits! Our Coaching calls are usually offered as a bonus with my many of my home study programs.

Ted Thomas

Ted Thomas is famous for showing newcomers and investors how to earn 6 figure incomes within 1 year of completing his training program. Conservative investors love tax lien certificates because they are predictable, certain and secure and sold by local government. Tax defaulted properties are sold at oral big auctions and online. Starting bid, only the back taxes…. More information at