Forfeited Land

Facts you should know before buying lands forfeited to the State of Minnesota for non-payment of taxes:

  • Public Sales:  All tax forfeited lands are appraised and offered at a public sale and sold to the highest bidder.  The minimum bid acceptable is the appraised value.
  • Private Sale:  Parcels not sold at the public sale may be purchased after the public sale by anyone offering to pay the appraised value.  Prices cannot be changed unless a parcel is re-appraised, advertised, and again offered at a public sale.
  • Conditions:  Sales are subject to:  existing leases, easements obtained by a governmental subdivision or state agency for a public purpose; and all applicable laws and ordinances.  The appraised value does not represent a basis for future taxes.  Local improvements constructed but not yet assessed must be assumed by the purchaser.
  • Special Assessments:  The balance of any special assessments that were levied before forfeiture and canceled at forfeiture and that exceed the amount of the basic sale price may be reassessed by the taxing district.  These special assessments are shown on the list of tax-forfeited land under the column titled “Assessments Before Forfeiture”.
  • Title: The purchaser will receive a receipt at the time of purchase and will receive a deed from the State of Minnesota through the Commissioner of Revenue at a later date.  Purchaser must pay applicable deed fees.  The law provides that this conveyance shall have the force and effect of a patent from the State.
  • Payments:  All sales shall be for “Cash Only” and full payment is required at the time of the sale.  All sales are final and no provisions made for refund or exchange.
  • Boundaries:  Big Stone County is not responsible for locating boundaries on tax-forfeited lands.

Costs to be paid at the time of purchase:
  • Purchase Price:  The price cannot be less than the assessed value, which was established by the County Board of Commissioners. 
  • State Deed Fee:  $25.00
  • Assurance Fee:  3% of purchase price for the State’s tax forfeited land assurance account.
  • Deed Tax:  .33% of purchase price (minimum $1.65).
  • Recording:  $46.00 for recording fee.