Tax sale refers to properties whose taxes have been in delinquent balance for the past three years.
The following notes provide general information about the tax sale process. For complete information, property owners and prospective purchasers should consult the Local Government Act in particular, but not limited to, Sections 645 to 672.
- The Municipality is required by the Local Government Act to offer at Tax Sale all properties where taxes are unpaid for three years.
- The Local Government Act gives the Collector authority to sell a property for the Upset Price which equals all outstanding taxes + penalties + interest + 5% tax sale costs + Land Title Office fees.
- All property sales are “as is” without warranty or guarantee.
- The Local Government Act requires municipalities to advertise the tax sale in two consecutive issues of a local paper, the last being not less than three, or more than 10 days prior to the Tax Sale.
- The legal description and street address must be published.
- To avoid publication in the newspaper ad, delinquent taxes plus interest must be paid not less than two weeks prior to the Tax Sale date.
- A public auction is held at 10:00 a.m., on the last Monday in September each year in a room designated as the Municipal Council Chambers.
- Bidding is accepted on all properties.
- Prospective purchasers are advised that it is their responsibility to research and be aware of any and all matters, including the land title records, that might affect their decision to purchase a property offered at tax sale.
- The minimum bid is the amount of the Upset Price.
- Full payment by certified cheque must be remitted by 1:00 p.m. on the day of the tax sale.
- If payment is not remitted, the Collector reconvenes the tax sale and offers the property for sale again.
Notifying Charge Holders
- Promptly after selling property for taxes, the collector must file the notice of the tax sale in the proper land title office.
- The Collector is required to notify all registered charge holders within 90 days after Tax Sale.
- Registered owners may pay property taxes, fees and interest accrued at any time over the next year thereby redeeming their property.
- All registered charge holders have full right to redeem the property on behalf of the owner within one year from the tax sale.
- When a property is redeemed, the Collector will refund to the Tax Sale purchaser the purchase price, plus interest to the date of redemption.
- Interest calculated on the tax sale price is payable to the purchaser and calculated at the applicable rates established by the province of British Columbia.
Rights During Redemption Period
- Section 421 of the Local Government Act provides that when real property is sold at Tax Sale, all rights held by the person who at the time of the of the sale was the owner, immediately cease to exist, except for the right of redemption, the right to bring an action to set aside the Tax Sale, and the right to possession.
- The registered owner’s right of possession is subject to the purchaser’s right to bring action against the original property owner for waste (i.e. damage or destruction to the premises) and the right of the purchaser to enter onto the property to maintain it in the proper condition and to prevent waste.
- Damage, destruction or loss of property during the redemption period is at the risk of the purchaser. The purchaser is advised to insure his interest in the property.
Property Not Redeemed
- If the property is not redeemed during the one year period, the Collector then registers the new owner at the Land Titles Office in Victoria, thus cancelling all previous registered charges, except for those matters set out in Section 276(1)(c) to (g) of the Land Title Act and any lien of the Crown, an improvement district or a local district.
- The new owners are required to pay the property sales tax to the Provincial Sales Tax Administrator after application has been made to register in the Land Titles Office.