More than 700 properties in Jasper and Newton counties could go on the block Monday, Aug. 27, when the two counties offer for sale properties on which taxes have not been paid for at least the past two years.
As of Friday, there were 601 properties on the sale list in Jasper County and 139 in Newton County. The sales are conducted that day by the collector’s office in each county in the state and the final number of properties shrink as the sale day approaches and landowners catch up on back taxes.
Steve Holt, Jasper County collector, said the number of properties listed for sale by his office “is a little higher than last year.
“But, some of those involve landowners who own multiple pieces of property who often will come in and get them taken care of right before the sale,” he said.
The number of properties on the list in Newton County “is about the same as last year,” said Jim Otey, Newton County collector. He noted the goal of the sale is to get the property back on the tax rolls and to collect back taxes that will go to schools, cities, counties and other taxing entities.
In Jasper County, lists of the properties were published in the Carthage Press and are available on the county collector’s website. The Newton County list was published in the Neosho Daily News, the Seneca News and the Newton County News.
“The numbers are now down to the point that we’re able to pass out lists at our front counter,” Otey said.
Holt said potential buyers in Jasper County can use the mapping site, which is part of the county assessor’s website, to research properties offered for sale.
“They can type in the code number and the owner’s name and get information on the property and even see an aerial photo,” he said.
Both Holt and Otey emphasized the need for potential buyers to research properties they might buy at a tax sale to determine if there are additional liens on the property that could prevent a final acquisition.
Buyers at the tax sale are not buying the property — but a tax certificate they can use to acquire the property if the original owner does not redeem it by paying the back taxes.
“Public policy favors redemption, and there have been a couple of Missouri Supreme Court decisions in the last several years that have reinforced that,” Otey said.
Jasper County property owners will have until noon on Friday, Aug. 24, to pay the taxes and remove properties from the sale list. In Newton County, tax payments are accepted until 10 a.m., the time state law sets for the start of the sale.
The tax sale in Jasper County will be conducted at 10 a.m. Monday, Aug. 27, on the third floor of the courthouse in Carthage. The sale in Newton County will be at the same time on the same day on the main floor of the courthouse in Neosho.