Tax Sale Information
Tax Sale Information
The Chancery Court Clerk & Master’s Office is responsible for conducting public auctions for delinquent real estate property taxes in Shelby County for both City of Memphis and Shelby County and the municipalities within Shelby County. You must register to bid in these auctions before the tax sale commences. We do not accept cash, credit cards, personal checks, wire transfers or arrange financing. The winning bid must be tendered by cashier’s check or money order.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. When Property is Sold: When property taxes are delinquent, and the tax lawsuit has been filed, and the court issues an Order directing the sale of property, the Chancery Court Clerk and Master proceeds to sell the property for satisfaction of the delinquent tax lien or liens. TCA §67-5-2501.
2. Payment of Taxes Before Sale. The taxpayer or owner or equity interest holder may pay the amount owed through the day before the property is to be sold in tax sale. If the amount owed is paid in full, the lawsuit involving his/her property will be dismissed or the judgment will be shown as satisfied.
3. Schedule of Tax Sales. Tax Sales are scheduled when there is an order directing sales of properties for the collection of delinquent taxes. See the County Trustee’s web site https://www.shelbycountytrustee.com/index.aspx?NID=191 for the tax sale schedule as well as the updated list of properties included in the sale.
4. Publication of Sales. Tax sales may be published in any regularly printed newspaper. Usually the sale is published in The Daily News. However, it may also be published in the Commercial Appeal, The Memphis Business Journal or The Tri-State Defender. The publication will identify where the sale will be conducted.
5. Registration of Bidders. Registration of bidders begins at the designated sale location between the hours of 8:30 – 9:30 a.m. or the day before a tax sale by going to Chancery Court to register. The Tax Sale will begin at 10:01 a.m.
6. Minimum Bid Amount. Bids will be accepted for any amount; but, the minimum amount for which the property will be sold is the total amount of delinquent taxes due on the property, plus the accrued penalties, interest, attorney’s fees and court cost and the initial Clerk’s commission on the sale as published.
7. Caveat Emptor. A potential purchaser is strongly urged to research the parcels offered for sale before the auction.
8. Successful Bids at Tax Sale. The successful bidder at a tax sale has one (1) business day to pay the full bid amount by cashier’s check or money order, made payable to the Clerk & Master and delivered to the Chancery Court Clerk & Master’s office, 140 Adams Ave., Room 308, Memphis, TN 38103. The office hours are 8:00 a.m. through 4:30p.m. Monday through Friday. Note: The Clerk and Master may institute legal action against any purchaser who fails to comply with their bid.
9. Order Confirming Sale. The sale is not complete until a Chancellor signs an order confirming the sale. TCA §67-5-2419
10. Issuance of Deed. After confirmation of the sale by the Chancery Court, the purchaser may obtain a Clerk & Master’s Tax Sale Deed by requesting the Deed from the Clerk and Master’s Office at 140 Adams, Room 308, Memphis, TN 38103, (901) 222-3917. The fee is $20.00. The deed should be recorded at the Shelby County Register’s office.
11. Right of Redemption. After the property is sold, the former owner, their heirs, lienholders, and assignees have a right to redeem or buy back the property within a specific date set out in the Clerk and Master's Report and the Order of Confirmation of Sale. If redeemed the purchaser will be refunded the full purchase price plus interest as set out in the statute.
12. Disposition of Properties sold to Shelby County. Unless directed by a resolution of the City Council or County Commission, all properties not specifically withdrawn for cause, will be sold. Properties not sold to individual buyers will be sold to Shelby County or the City of Memphis. Such properties may later be sold by the County Land Bank after the redemption period has expired. For a list of properties available from the Land Bank visit the Land Bank’s web site (http://www.shelbycountytn.gov/index.aspx?NID=407).
13. Any additional questions about Chancery Court tax sales may be answered by our Bookkeeping Department. Phone (901) 222-3917.