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 Post subject: Helpful Tip - Avoid leases
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:51 pm 

Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2012 1:26 am
Posts: 12
When reading the legal description of the property if it indicates that the taxes owed are only for the structure and NOT the land then I would avoid them unless you have a lot of experience with these types of properties. There are several potential problems you may run into, you have no idea how much the land lease costs each month or even if the land owner will give you a lease ( they may ask you to remove the structure.) The structure may be removed or even destroyed before you go 3 years and have a chance to take ownership. If you are just paying the taxes on a building and a hurricane destroys it, you have nothing. At least with the vast majority of tax sales you are bidding on the land + structures. If something happens to the building you at least still have the value of the land.


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 Post subject: Re: Helpful Tip - Avoid leases
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:56 am 

Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:33 am
Posts: 2
This brings up a good point that in Louisiana the land can be owned separately from the structure or "improvement" on top. If you can get a land on which sits a cell phone tower or billboard, you won't do too bad.


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 Post subject: Re: Helpful Tip - Avoid leases
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 4:25 am 

Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2012 1:26 am
Posts: 12
Chris wrote:
This brings up a good point that in Louisiana the land can be owned separately from the structure or "improvement" on top. If you can get a land on which sits a cell phone tower or billboard, you won't do too bad.


The very first property I purchased was a camp. I didn't realized when it said "improvements" that it was just the camp and not the land as well. I paid the taxes at the sale and a couple months later for the current year before I started investigating. After looking a little deeper I realized that the owner of the camp was leasing the land and that his lease had expired. I spoke with the land owner and he indicated that he was not renewing any of the leases and basically I was S.O.L. The interesting tid bit was that the lease had expired a couple years earlier, and the land owner explained in a letter that he sent me that upon termination of the lease the ownership of the camp would revert to him. Ok, fine. So why didn't you notify the parish so they could update the tax roles so that you could pay the taxes owed on the camp since you are claiming that you have been the owner the last couple years? Why is the camp still in the previous owner's name, who obviously isn't going to pay the taxes on a camp he no longer has access to and does not own ?

The land owner admitted that the camp's leased expired and the ownership of the camp then was transferred to him but he conveniently failed to notify the assessor's office. Which in my opinion he should have notified the assessor's office and the value of the camp should have been added as an improvement to his existing land assessment, thus terminating the assessment for just the camp which was in the previous owner of the camp's name. Therefore the assessment would have never gone to tax sale and the correct person would have been paying the taxes for it. I am still fighting this one 3 years later.

I also had a friend tell me how he purchased a large building at tax sale that was damaged in Katrina and then demolished shortly after. Since it was just for the building that had a land lease he lost all of the money he had paid on taxes.

I am sure there are some situations where leases could be a great deal, but for a novice like myself, I try to steer clear of the difficult / complex situations until I become a lot more knowledgable.


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