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The government uses a tax lien to secure property in lieu of late or nonpayment of property taxes.
Securing a tax lien allows an investor to gain control over a real property with an investment that is a fraction of the market value of the property.
There was a time when an investor would need to show up physically for an auction, but it is becoming popular to hold tax lien sales online.
If the original property owner declares bankruptcy, creditors have priority over a tax lien holder.
These include criminal records, bankruptcies, and judgment and tax lien databases.