What is a Tax Lien Certificate and How You Profit From Buying Them 

A tax lien is a claim that a governmental entity imposes on the property to secure the payment of taxes. The lien attaches payment of all delinquent taxes, including interest and penalties, that the property owner owes up to the date the lien is paid in full. 

When a property owner doesn’t pay taxes, the government can put a lien on their property. This means the government can take ownership of the property if the taxes are not paid. The government will do this by auctioning the property to the highest bidder. 

If you’re looking for a unique investment opportunity with the potential to deliver high returns, consider buying tax lien certificates. This blog post will give you a brief overview of tax lien certificates and how you can profit from them. Keep reading to learn more!

What is a Tax Lien Certificate? 

A tax lien certificate is an investor’s proof of purchase of a tax lien. It’s also evidence that the investor now has the first right to collect on the debt should the homeowner default and fail to pay off their owed taxes, plus interest and any other fees as specified in the tax lien certificate. In other words, by buying a tax lien certificate, you’re priority number one regarding getting paid back. 

In other words, a tax lien certificate is a document that represents the right of the government to collect back taxes from a property owner. The government can sell the tax lien certificate to an investor if the property owner fails to pay their taxes. The investor then has the right to collect the unpaid taxes, plus interest and penalties, from the property owner. 

Purchasing Tax Lien Certificates 

The first step in buying tax lien certificates is determining if your state offers them. Not all states provide tax liens, and you can check with your state’s tax office or search online for “Georgia tax lien certificates.” Once you know that your state offers tax lien certificates, you need to determine when and where they will be auctioned off. This information is also available from your state’s tax office or online. 

Tax lien certificates are generally sold at auctions held by county governments. Before attending one of these auctions, you must understand how they work and what kinds of properties will have tax liens against them. You should also know how much you will spend on a tax lien certificate. 

You’re not bidding on properties at a tax lien auction. Instead, you’re bidding on the right to collect someone else’s debt. The higher your bid, the higher the interest rate you’ll earn should you win the auction and acquire a tax lien certificate. 

For example, let’s say you win an auction with a bid of $5,000 for a tax lien certificate with an interest rate of 10%. If the homeowner ultimately pays off their delinquent taxes (plus any accrued interest and fees), you’ll receive $5,500 back from them – $5,000 for your original investment plus $500 in interest earnings. Not too shabby! 

Of course, there’s always risk involved whenever you’re investing your money. In this case, there’s always the possibility that the homeowners never pay off their delinquent taxes, and you lose your entire investment. There’s also always inflation risk – meaning that even if homeowners do eventually pay off their delinquent taxes (plus any accrued interest and fees), they may not be able to generate as much purchasing power with their earnings as they could have if inflation hadn’t eroded some of its value away. 

But if things go well and you carefully select which tax liens to purchase at auction, investing in tax liens can be a great way to earn solid returns with less risk than many other types of investments. 

How Can You Profit From Buying Tax Lien Certificates? 

There are two main ways to profit from buying tax lien certificates: 

  • By collecting the unpaid taxes, interest, and penalties from the property owner, or 
  • By foreclosing on the property. 

If you collect unpaid taxes, interest, and penalties from the property owner, you will typically earn a return of 18% to 36%. However, there is always a risk that the property owner will never be able to pay off the debt, in which case you would not earn any return on your investment. 

If you choose to foreclose on the property, you will become the new owner of the property. You can then either sell the property or keep it and rent it out. Foreclosing on a property is a more complex process than simply collecting unpaid taxes, so we recommend working with an experienced real estate attorney if you go this route. 


If you’re looking for a new investment opportunity with the potential for high returns and relatively low risks, then investing in the Tax Lien Code is what you’re looking for. Be sure to research before attending any auctions to know how to buy a property with a tax lien and the risk of buying tax deed properties. With careful selection and monitoring, investing in tax liens can significantly boost your portfolio’s performance!

Please consult a financial advisor or real estate attorney before making investment decisions.