Auction Buyer Pays $9,100 for Property, then Discovers it’s a 1 Foot Wide Grass Strip Worth $50!
A Florida man thought he’d landed a steal when he bid on a $9,100 Florida villa in an online auction but ended up buying a strip of grass running between two homes – and officials say there’s nothing he can do about a refund.
The Tamarac resident and newbie investor thought he purchased a Tamarac villa, worth $177,000, during a Broward online auction in March this year of properties that defaulted on their taxes. However he ended up with a one-foot-wide, 100-foot-long strip of grass on Northwest 100th Way in Spring Lake – a tiny piece of land worth just $50.
The land begins at the sidewalk curb where two mailboxes are placed and then goes under a wall separating two garages of two adjoining villas, then extends to the backyards of the homes. What seems on the surface a seriously misrepresented transaction, there is nothing that the first time auction bidder can do according to state law, claim Broward County Officials. It’s “deception” the buyer said to the Sun Sentinel, a local Florida Newspaper. “There was no demarcation to show it’s just a line going through the [villa duplex], even though they have the tools to show that, the buyer claims”, he continued “that the property appraiser images were linked to the auction site that showed the villa as the item to be bid on”.
Our viewpoint here at Propertyonion.com is that an experienced investor would have known exactly what the single red line denoted and the $50 land value is another giveaway, you see this occasionally in what are called “pathways” and “alleyways”. Now officials are warning auction participants to be wary of bidding on properties, however if the buyer had taken out a PropertyOnion.com title report, our highly trained abstractors would have picked this anomaly out immediately, placed a comment on the title report which would have alerted the bidder. We can only hope someone at the County level steps up and does the right thing!
Such a shame the buyer didn’t contact a reputable title company first to help him do his due diligence on the tax deed auction. The $50 title search would have been insignificant in comparison to the $9,100.00 wasted on a worthless sliver of land.