Bidding Rules

Bidding Rules
2021 Pima County, Arizona
Tax Lien Certificate Auction




1) Getting Started

If you are not completely familiar with the statutes governing tax liens in this state, read the “Tax Certificate Process” document located on the left-hand menu, prior to logging in.  It is a plain-English summary of the law and will take only a few minutes to read.


2) Bidder Training

Realauction offers live training classes (via the Internet) once a week for several weeks prior to the close of the sale.  Attendance is by registration only. These classes last about ninety (90) minutes, cover the use of the software only, and are free of charge.  To register for a class, please contact the Realauction Customer Service Center at (877) 361-7325.


3) Terms 

While purchasing tax lien certificates is generally a good investment, there are some risks involved.  The treasurer does not make any guarantees that a purchaser will make money on a purchase and bidders should be aware that the property owner has a right to redeem the tax lien AT ANY TIME.

Note: The purchase of a tax certificate does not convey title to the land.  Understand the risks and apply the “buyer beware” philosophy.


4) Register on this site

Potential buyers must register on this website to receive a bidder number for the Pima County tax lien certificate sale.  Registration begins at 10:00 AM MT on 02/03/2021 and ends at 5:00 PM MT on 02/26/2021.  At the time of registration, you will create a Username and Password as part of the process.

Note: Pima County utilizes a Single Simultaneous Bidding Entity Rule which states that each bidder may register only once and cannot have a contractual, legal or financial relationship with any other bidder in the Pima County Tax Lien Sale.


5) Requirements to Participate

Registration grants you access to the website only and does not guarantee participation in the Pima County tax lien certificate sale.

To become a "qualified" participant in the 2021 sale, you must also comply with the participation requirements by 5:00 PM MT on Friday, February 26th, 2021.

The participation requirements in Pima County are as follows:  

  Submit a deposit  
  Pay the registration fee  

  Failure to meet ALL of the the participation requirements, by the date/time specified, will affect your ability to participate in the sale.


6) Place a Deposit

The deposit is required and must be submitted before the deposit deadline in order for your bids to be valid.

Decide how much money you would like to invest in tax lien certificates for this auction ($10,000 for example).  Make a deposit of exactly 10% of that amount. Your deposit will limit how much you can win, no matter how many bids you place.


7) Pay Your Registration Fee

A registration Fee of $10.00 is required to participate in the sale and must be submItted, prior to placing bids.

Note: The $10.00 Registration Fee is a cost to participate in the sale.  As such, this fee:
• is non-refundable
does not get applied to your winnings


8) Place Your Bids

It is the bidder's responsibility to research properties, prior to placing bids.

You may bid on as many quality liens as you like; your deposit will limit how much you can win, no matter how many bids you place and there is no penalty for running out of deposit money.   Once your deposit monies are exhausted, your remaining bids are simply ignored.

• All bids placed whether intentional or not are the responsibility of the bidder.
• You may place as many bids as you like before making a deposit.  However, none of your bids will count unless the deposit requirement is met, prior to the deposit due date.


9) Batch Closings

Tax lien certificates are advertised and sold individually.  However, in order to make the bidding process more manageable, certificates are divided into groups called "batches" which close every 60 minutes on the auction sale date.

As each batch closes, you can review the results for that batch by clicking “Results” on the website menu.  After reviewing the results, you are welcome to modify your bids in any open batches.


10) Certificate of Purchase Fees

If you are a successful bidder, the following fees will be levied on the Certificates of Purchase(s) per Arizona Revised Statutes, specifically: 

a) Processing Fee - The purchaser shall pay a processing fee of not more than ten dollars per tax lien (A.R.S. 42-18116).

The fee schedule in Pima County is as follows:
• Face Amount < $50 = $1 Processing Fee
• Face Amount $50-$200 = $5 Processing Fee
• Face Amount > $200 = $10 Processing Fee

Note: The treasurer shall deposit Processing Fee monies collected into the taxpayers' information fund (A.R.S. 42-18116).
In accordance with state statutes, the processing fee is non-refundable (A.R.S. 42-18153). 

b) Certificate Fee - The county treasurer shall collect from the purchaser or assignee a fee of ten ($10) dollars for each certificate (A.R.S. 42-18118). 


11) Final Payments

Payment for auction items won and the associated fees will be accepted by ACH (electronic check) only.  It is the bidder's responsibility to ensure your bank account will accept ACH debits and credits prior to placing bids.

A.R.S. 42-18116 states that if the purchaser of a tax lien fails to pay the amount due by the date/time determined by the treasurer, the treasurer may prohibit the purchaser from purchasing tax liens from any county in Arizona for a period of not more than one (1) year.





  Bidder Accounts  
  Allow foreign bidder registrations     Yes  
  Single simultaneous bidder rule     No  
  Auction Information  
  Bidding style     Direct Bid Auction  
  0 value bids use proxy system     No  
  Allow sub-accounts     No  
  Automatic certificate rollup / rollup fee     ---     ---  
  Auction Dates and Times  
  Registration begins (site opens)**     02/03/2021 at 10:00 AM MT  
  Deposits, Registration fees and Budgets begin     02/03/2021 at 10:00 AM MT  
  Bidding begins     02/03/2021 at 10:00 AM MT  
  Deposits, Registration fees and Budgets end      02/26/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  Participation Requirements  


    Submit a deposit  
  Pay the registration fee  

  Click HERE to go to the "Participation Requirements" page  

  to view or update the eligibility status of your bidder account.   

  Participation Requirements Due Date     02/26/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  Registrations end     02/26/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  First batch closes     02/25/2021 at 8:00 AM MT  
  Batch closing interval     60 minutes  
  Last batch closes     02/25/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  Auxiliary batch opens     02/25/2021 at 6:00 PM MT  
  Auxiliary batch closes     02/26/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  Payment due date     03/01/2021 at 5:00 PM MT  
  Budget, Deposit and Payment Information   
  Deposit or Budget required (% of estimated winnings)     10%  
  Minimum deposit amount     $0.00  
  Registration Fee     $10.00  
  Registration Fee Refundable     No  
  Registration Fee Applied to Winnings     No  
  Deposit / Payment types acceptable:   Deposits Payments
    Budget     No     ---  
    ACH     Yes     No  
    ACH auto-debit final payment     ---     Yes  
    Wire transfers     No     No  
    Counter payments     No     No  
  Redemptions available via ACH?     Yes  
  Public Access  
  Public computers available      Public Library  
  ** Subject to change. The site will open when approved by the County.  




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