There’s Only 1 Way People With Hardly Any Money to Spend Can Buy Land

James Walton
By James Walton September 29, 2017 09:02

There’s Only 1 Way People With Hardly Any Money to Spend Can Buy Land

10,000 Americans will turn 65 years old every day for the next decade. This is the most incredible statistic we have seen regarding the age of Americans as well as the size of a particular demographic. These baby boomers come from all walks of life. Some own lots of land. Every year we lose some of these great Americans to age and disease.

The land that is left behind winds up in the families’ hands. This usually doesn’t go very well. Sometimes there are tremendous battles over ownership and other times this land becomes a burden on the person to which it was left. Families are more fractured now and that land in Missouri does not do the child much good if they now live in Maryland.

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Even worse for the family is if this land is left to a family member who cannot afford the taxes. Now you have a piece of land that the owner is uninterested in and cannot afford the taxes on. If you do not pay the taxes on a property the first steps the government will take is to put a tax lien on the property.


A Tax Lien is the first major step the IRS takes against individuals to collect back taxes. A Tax Lien gives the IRS a legal claim to your property as security or payment for your tax debt. It is used to protect the government’s interest in your assets. –

If taxes are unpaid for long enough the state will take possession of that property. They will then have what is called a tax deed.


A legal document that grants ownership of a property to a government body when the property owner does not pay the taxes due on the property. A tax deed gives the government the authority to sell the property to collect the delinquent taxes and transfer the property to the purchaser. Such sales are called “tax deed sales” and are usually held as auctions where the minimum bid is the amount of back taxes and fees owed. –

When you understand what type of land you are looking for and you know where to look for it you can start deed hunting. There are two very different ways to approach each but you can get land for incredibly cheap and sometimes even for free if you do some research on tax liens and deeds in the area you are looking to buy in.

Where to Get Cheap Property

For the purposes of this article we are going to concern ourselves with hunting tax liens because we don’t want to get tied up in an auction that could use more money than we are willing to spend.

At the very least there are a few things you must look for when considering where you want to buy property. If you are looking for very cheap land and are not tethered to a certain location go West of the Mississippi. If you must stay close to home look for a smaller track of land in a rural location. This land is still abundant and if you follow the process below you will have success in finding that dirt cheap piece of land for no money out of your pocket.

Related: Prepping on a Budget – How To Get Survival Supplies When You Have Almost No Money


There is not a piece of land out there that you won’t have to do some research on. That is the cost of doing business. You will have to earn this piece of land. To get your hands on something free or insanely cheap you will pass up lots of great land.

These are the types of things you will be looking for in a great piece of land.

PROPERTY TYPE – You are basically looking for any type of land that is categorized as residential/agricultural. If you go looking for larger swaths of land they may be in agricultural only.

FLOOD ZONE – Be very careful about the 100-year flood zone. Make sure your property does not fall in this zone. You will have consistently moist land that will be tough for homesteading on and it will be filled with pests and bugs. You don’t want to have your bug out location flooded if you are running from civil unrest.

LOCATION – This depends on what you think you are capable of. Some people want that piece of land to homestead and live on, others want it to hunt on or even as a BOL. Just be sure you can get there if you need to, in a hurry.

OWNER – The owner is very important. You will more than likely be contacting them if there is a lien on the home. To contact them you will need their address. This will not be the GPS coordinates of the land they own. You will need to find out who the owner is and what their mailing address is.

Related: 5 Things You Need to Do When There’ll Be No Rule of Law

County Papers and Offices

One of the best ways to find out about properties that are in tax trouble as well as some of the information above is to look at county newspapers or contact government offices. Most of these government offices have sections of these properties. You can often download PDF’s on this information or be put on a mailing list about properties.

On county government sites look for the treasurer page. They are the keepers of this information. You won’t have to do much digging to find the page but each county handles these things differently.


Software is a new player in the cheap land game. The downside is that it comes with a price. Still, I thought it important that we talk about it in this article as we are always looking for innovations. You may have to spend a little up front but it could net you the perfect property.

Land Vision is a comprehensive software that allows you to research areas of interest. This product will offer you in depth information on the property as well as what the tax conditions are. You will be able to find if a property meets your criteria or not with a single click.

Make an Offer

So, you want land but you have no money, right? Well you are going to use that chunk of money you get each year from the government. Yes. Use your tax refund. This will assure that you have the right amount of money for the land and come to the table with a bargaining chip.

The best time to seek out great deals on land is in the Fall. This means you will have to be disciplined and hold onto that money till the Fall season. Everyone wants to buy land in the early Spring and Summer.

Once you have identified the right piece of land and the owner, you need to approach them. The people who are making a living flipping raw land are doing this every day. Their method is very clear. They mail a cordial yet succinct letter to the owner that contains an offer.

Since you have your money in cash you should also mention that. This small cash offer could be all you need to get your hands on that land. Remember what I told you about the burden of land ownership in 2017. Many Americans have come into land and it is merely a bill they must deal with.

If you follow the trail of tax liens you will undoubtedly run into an owner who just wants to let that land go!

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James Walton
By James Walton September 29, 2017 09:02
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  1. Wannabe September 29, 12:33

    That house is in a beautiful location but my goodness when the flood waters rise.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck September 29, 16:20

      Also the mosquitos are at least the size of hummingbirds. In addition, a service buddy of mine had settled in Missouri after retiring. He finally said he had to leave because there were so many ticks due to the large deer population. I wouldn’t have connected the two but he said he couldn’t even sit on his porch in the evening due to ticks. Sounded exaggerated to me but I had no experience or knowledge to judge his statement.

      Reply to this comment
      • Bushwacker September 29, 20:48

        Thin the herd into your freezer

        Reply to this comment
        • left coast chuck September 30, 01:22

          I don’t know the hunting laws in Missouri, but most states have a limit on how many deer one can take in one season. Even if it is as many as ten, and I doubt that any state has that high a limit, it probably wouldn’t make a dent in the deer populations in some parts of the country. While in some cases the penalties for poaching seem ridiculously minimal, in other states they are a pretty big hit in the pocketbook. I don’t have a clue what the penalties are for poaching in Missouri. Many states are decades behind the times in hunting regulations and many regulations when you read them you say, “Huh!? I read one state had a regulation that you couldn’t hunt deer while asleep. Well, I don’t know, if I am sound asleep in a tree stand or crouched down in a blind, am I really hunting or am I sleeping? I always considered hunting to be an active participation sport. I didn’t know you could sleep and hunt at the same time. If you want to read some convoluted hunting regs that only a lawyer could love you should peruse the CA fish and game regs. Of course they are written by mostly lawyers, so I guess we get what we pay for. And boy, do we pay for them. Highest paid bunch of schlubs in the country.

          Reply to this comment
      • brucewayne October 4, 09:04

        guinea hens

        Reply to this comment
  2. Cmonster September 29, 14:03

    What if one is disabled and doesn’t get a tax return or have cash on hand?

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck September 29, 16:29

      If you are disabled, do you really want to live on a rural farm? Many times medical care is located at the county seat which may be miles away. You are isolated from any neighbors and if you need help it is volunteer at best or non-existent. Not saying volunteer emergency services are bad. They are a truly dedicated folk who rarely get the praise they deserve for the time and effort they donate to their community, but they have a full time job too.
      Repair services many times are located in the nearest large town which may be even further than the county seat. I have done many bicycle rides through rural America and it is sad. I rode across Kansas three times and rural America is in trouble. I rode through towns where all the citizens were in their late 60s, 70s and 80s. The young people had all moved away. In some instances there wasn’t any store in town. The farmland was being run from some corporation that had a caretaker on the property who managed all the services that grew the crops and most of the income was from government subsidies of one sort or another. You need to investigate carefully before you leap into a rural situation. It sounds idyllic but if you haven’t grown up in that setting, it is far rougher than you can imagine.

      Reply to this comment
      • crusty October 2, 21:18

        You may be confusing disabled with “invalid”.
        I am also disabled, living on 80 acres in AZ. My next door neighbor is about 5 miles away, about 5 miles too close.
        I am a lot slower working than i use to be and have to watch my step, and some days i just lie on the floor for an hour every thirty minutes of work.
        Town is about 45. I would not change the situation for all of any town or city. If i need emergency help i will dial 911 and pray till they get there. If they don’t make it in time that’s God’s problem.

        Reply to this comment
        • Flutemaking vet October 10, 04:25

          I dont know where in AZ you are but, finding someone to help out or just be around shouldnt be to hard. Ive been wintering there for the last three years and always looking to stay in different places. especially if there happens to be gold somewhere around. lol I could be looking for a new place this year…. Just saying….

          Reply to this comment
        • Varke October 27, 00:52

          I am 100%. Do you have a couple of acres for sale? I live in Phoenix and having a very hard time finding land. Thank you..

          Reply to this comment
    • Hitchcock September 30, 00:10

      Mike, any coming up in NC

      Reply to this comment
    • ASH September 30, 03:45

      Any coming up in Ar close to Morrilton but not in city limits?

      Reply to this comment
    • Down east Chuck October 1, 22:44

      Do you have any prospects south of Salt Lake city ? I am in a similar situation. I’ve read Joel Scousen’s “Strategic Relocation” and see that though rugged, that area has good attributes.

      Reply to this comment
      • MikeSellsLand October 4, 14:23

        I plan on getting several properties in UT within the next month or so.

        Reply to this comment
        • crusty October 12, 10:52

          I guess your posts answered my question of ; if this works so well aren’t there hundreds of realtors or developers with money grabbing them up with better offers?

          Reply to this comment
          • Mack September 2, 12:55

            It appears that “Mike’s land offers” are not suitable for BOL. That is, unless you want to live in the mosquitos and bugs! It looks like somewhat over-priced low lying mosquito infested lots that will be the first to flood in the event of any storm in the area. Looks shady to me . . . and I’m not talking about the trees.

            Reply to this comment
            • Mack September 3, 10:44

              So “Mike”, you chose to call me a name simply because I stated an opinion that I did not believe the properties look like good BOL?! Wow. I would think a 55 year old ‘man’ would be a little smarter than that. Let’s see if this site has a moderator.

              Reply to this comment
        • bruno November 7, 17:24

          any land in central nevada

          Reply to this comment
    • Prelusive September 2, 12:46

      It would be nice if you included at least the property location (city/town area) in the listing heading. Otherwise we have to open every listing to discover where it is. . . . . Just a suggestion.

      Reply to this comment
  3. lewis September 30, 02:09

    nice i will youse the info and get me a home thanks

    Reply to this comment
  4. BigMomma October 3, 20:50

    Kentucky Land Co. also does financing, no credit check, small down payment . They are in central KY.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Lilpammy October 4, 11:16

    Due to some family in-fighting and slack Alabama government procedures, a piece of land my father owned was “sold” for nonpayment of taxes. I was unaware this had happened and only by the grace of God did I find out in time to redeem the property. So yeah, you can get some great deals out there, especially in Alabama!

    Reply to this comment
  6. John October 12, 19:16

    Mr. Walton,

    good basic article. The explanation of Tax Deed from is OK for an article on buying property for back taxes but the quoting of tax lien from is not the proper type of tax lien for non-payment of back property taxes. It is the County Tax Assessor’s Office, may be called something slightly different in some States, that places the lien for non-payment of back property taxes, not the IRS.

    Reply to this comment
  7. James Walton October 18, 10:47

    Noted. Thanks John.

    Reply to this comment
  8. Currency Finance November 21, 17:42

    Terific web pae you have in this article, i do agree on some issues although, but not all.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Edgardo December 3, 03:21

    Great web page you have in this article, i
    do concur on some issues although, but not all.

    Reply to this comment
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