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Suzanne Johnston
Flagler County Tax Collector

2017 Flagler County
Tax Certificate Sale Calendar:
Registration for Tax Certificate Bidding:
Online, Available All Year Long. To Register, Please Visit
For Practice Auction Participation, Please visit
May 9, 2017:
June 1, 2017:
Tax Certificate Sale Online
9:00 am: First batch closes; batches will continue
to close each consecutive hour
4:00 pm: Final batch closes;
final bids must be placed prior to the close of each batch

Tax Deeds and Certificates FAQ's

Quick Links:

To visit the Flagler County Tax Certificate Sale website:

To apply for Tax Deed:

For information about Tax Deed Sales:
What are Tax Certificates? Go to Top of Page 
Property taxes become due November 1, and are delinquent if not paid by April 1 of the following year.

CountyTax Collectors are required each year to conduct a sale, by public auction, of tax certificates for delinquent real estate tax parcels.  The issuance of tax certificates and the auction process are both governed by Chapter 197 of Florida Statutes.

Tax certificates convey no property rights.  They are an interest bearing “lien.”  Tax certificates are a first lien against property and supersede governmental liens.

Are Delinquent Taxes Publicized?Go to Top of Page


In March of each year, the Tax Collector sends out reminder notices to all unpaid accounts. The Tax Collector prepares a list of delinquent taxes in May to be posted in the newspaper and online. 

For each parcel, the following information is provided:

1.        Owner’s name as certified on the current year’s assessment roll
2.        Property Identification number (usually 19 digits)
3.        Property’s legal description
4.        Face amount of the certificate
The list in the newspaper is published for three consecutive weeks, and provides the date and online web-site information for participation in the certificate sale. 
Auction Terms? Go to Top of Page
On or before June 1, the Tax Collector must begin the annual tax certificate auction. 

Those wishing to participate in the auction must register online at the following Tax Certificate Sale website:

Bidders already registered from previous year Flagler County Tax Certificate Sales will not need to register again, but will need to provide a current W-9, which must also be submitted on the same site.

The tax certificate sale will be available for bids online about three weeks prior to the date of the tax certificate sale.

Bids for each tax certificate will be accepted in increments of ¼%, for any amount of interest within the range of 0% to 18%.  The winning bid will be the lowest bid made within that range.  Bidding is conducted by “proxy,” similar to eBay.  A bidder can name a minimum acceptable amount, but if there is no competing bidder, the winning bid will be accepted at the maximum interest amount, 18%.

If there is more than one bidder placing the same lowest bid amount, the winning bidder will be selected, from those lowest bidders, at random. 

It is not uncommon for the winning bid on a certificate to be as low as ¼%, as the minimum redemption on the winning bidder’s investment is 5% (provided the winning bid was not 0%).  The winning bidder will pay the face amount of the tax certificate.  A tax certificate’s face amount consists of the sum of the following: the unpaid March amount of real estate tax, 4½% interest (three months’ interest between the date of delinquency and the date of the certificate sale), Tax Collector’s commission (5% against the sum of the unpaid March amount and the 4½% interest), the newspaper’s advertising charge and sale or other costs. 

The face amount of each certificate must be paid by ACH via the Tax Certificate Sale web-site within 48 hours of the close of the certificate sale.

What Certificates Cannot Be Sold?
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A tax certificate is issued only in the name of the county if:

1. A tax certificate represents a face amount of less than $250.00 on property that has been granted a homestead exemption.  This certificate will be issued to the county at the maximum rate of interest allowed by law (18%); or

2. The delinquent taxes are on subsurface rights.  The fee owner to which these subsurface rights are attached has the right to purchase the tax certificate at the maximum rate of interest provided by law (18%) before bids are accepted for the sale of such certificates; or

3.  The property owner is in bankruptcy per federal law, which dictates that no action be taken to force payment of a debt; or

4.   A tax bill is under litigation or on the deferred roll. 


What if There are No Bidders?Go to Top of Page
If there are no bidders for a certificate of delinquent taxes, that tax certificate is issued in the name of the county at 18% per year.  County held certificates can be purchased online at

Are Tax Certificates Transferable?Go to Top of Page

All tax certificates issued (except certain certificates held by the county) are transferable at any time before they are redeemed or a tax deed is sale is completed. 

The official transfer of a tax sale certificate must be processed at the Tax Collector’s Office.  There is a fee of $2.25 for each processed transfer.

What About Tax Certificates
Held by the County?Go to Top of Page

A tax certificate issued in the name of the county is retained in the possession of the countyTax Collector.  These tax certificates can be purchased, except those relating to homestead real estate under $250.00, bankruptcies, tax deferrals and tax bills under litigation. 

A tax certificate relating to homestead real estate under $250.00 can be purchased from the county only when the tax certificate and accrued interest thereon represent an amount of $250.00 or more.  For each certificate redeemed, each county certificate purchased and each omitted year, the Collector shall receive a fee of $6.25. 

What Happens When a Tax
Certificate is Redeemed?Go to Top of Page
A tax certificate may be redeemed by the property owner at any time, prior to a tax deed sale, by making payment to the Tax Collector.  Payment will include the face amount of the certificate plus any interest and fees due to the certificate holder at the time of redemption. 

Upon redemption of a tax certificate, the certificate holder will receive payment from the Tax Collector’s Office.  The certificate holder will receive a minimum return of 5% interest, provided the winning bid was not 0%.

What is the “Life” of a
Tax Certificate?Go to Top of Page
Tax certificates are dated as of the first day of the certificate sale and have a life of up to seven years. 
When a certificate becomes seven years old, it is deemed and held to be barred by the statute of limitations, and no action on the certificate may be maintained by any private holder, in any court of the state.
Once a tax certificate becomes about two years old (specifically, two years from the date the bill itself became delinquent, usually April 1 of the year of the tax certificate sale), its holder may submit application for tax deed.  To apply for tax deed, please visit      
This option remains open until the certificate is redeemed or the certificate becomes seven years old, whichever is sooner. 
Any certificate holder, other than the county, making application for a tax deed shall pay the Tax Collector a title search fee, application fee and all amounts required for redemption or purchase of all other outstanding tax certificates, interest, omitted taxes and delinquent taxes relating to the real estate.        

Once application for tax deed on a property has been made, the Flagler County Clerk’s Office will advertise and hold a public tax deed sale.

The opening bid on property at a tax deed sale will include all clerk’s fees in addition to the amount of money paid to the Tax Collector by the certificate holder at the time application and the amount required to redeem the applicant’s tax certificate(s). 
The opening bid on property assessed as homestead property on the latest tax roll must include one-half of the assessed value of the homestead property as listed on the current year’s tax roll, plus all clerk’s fees, as well as the amount of money paid to the Tax Collector by the certificate holder at the time of application, and the amount required to redeem the applicant’s tax certificate(s). 
A tax deed is issued to the highest bidder.
The titleholder of record of a property shall have the right to redeem a tax deed application at any time, prior to the issuance of a tax deed by the Clerk of Circuit Court, by making payment to the Tax Collector for all outstanding certificates, any omitted year’s taxes, delinquent taxes, interest, fees and all costs of sale.
If a tax deed application is redeemed before the actual tax sale, the applicant will receive a check from the Clerk of Court’s office to cover all costs which the applicant incurred when applying for the tax deed, plus 18% interest on these costs. More information about tax deed sales may be obtained at
Please note: This information is intended as a general overview of tax certificates and tax certificate sales.  It is not intended to be all-inclusive.  For more information about tax certificates please consult Florida Statutes or visit

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