Bids ‘too low’ on foreclosed properties

Published 9:56 am Monday, November 9, 2015

WINTON – Low bids on a pair of tax foreclosure properties have forced the Hertford County Board of Commissioners to delay a decision on accepting those offers.

At their meeting here Monday morning, the board was informed that the Dwight D. Deloatch property, now owned by the county due to non-payment of $6,430 in property taxes, and the Clyde and Annie Hardison parcel, also in the hands of the county after the landowner did not pay delinquent taxes in the amount of $21,347,97, received purchase bids of $1,000 and $2,100 respectively.

Both bids are the initial offers made by two county residents. If the Board had accepted those offers on Monday, the law requires the county to legally publish that information and go through the process of accepting upset bids.

Instead, the county chose another option.

“We know that a lot of these foreclosed properties remain on our list for a considerable amount of time,” said Hertford County Manager Loria Williams. “I would like to know how long these two particular properties have been on the list; that would give us some indication of how far we can go below the cost that we have invested in the legal fees of these properties.”

Williams referenced the two respective bids as, “very, very, very low.”

“Perhaps we need to establish what type of percentage, based on what is owed in back taxes, of what we will accept and what we will not accept as a bid to purchase,” Williams said. “Of course we know that, conversely, as long as these properties sit on the books we are not receiving any revenue.”

Williams suggested that the Tax Office needs to add a column to their listing of foreclosed properties owned by the county as to how long they have been “on the books.” She also suggested that the property value needs to be listed with the foreclosed properties and what taxes they could generate if sold to the highest bidder.

“Again, these bid offers are way below the back taxes owed and the legal fees associated with them,” Williams said.

The Board opted to table the issue until the information suggested by Williams could be added to the list.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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