All taxes remaining unpaid after the due date are delinquent and are subject to interest and penalties. The Tax Commissioner's Office mails 30-day late notices on all unpaid accounts. Any taxes remaining unpaid at this time are subject to levy and tax sale. Properties available at the current Tax Sale can be found in the Marietta Daily Journal Real Estate section every Friday. This listing is updated monthly. Terminals are also available for public use in checking unpaid taxes at 736 Whitlock Avenue, Suite 100 in Marietta.
The Cobb County Tax Commissioner's Office follows legal procedures prescribed by the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) when levying property. We strongly suggest you read those sections of Georgia law which pertain to tax executions and tax sales. OCGA Title 48 - Revenue and Taxation, Chapter 3 - "Tax Executions," and Chapter 4 - "Tax Sales," contain important information that you must be aware of.
Tax sales are held on the first Tuesday of each month, between the hours of 10 am and 4 pm on the steps of the Courthouse at the southeast corner of Roswell and Waddell Streets. If Tuesday falls on a holiday, the sale will take place on the first Wednesday. A listing of the properties may be found in the Friday edition of the Marietta Daily Journal for a four-week period prior to the sale.
You may pre-register prior to the day of the tax sale; however, you must be present in order to bid. Bidder registrations and ID cards are issued between 9 am and 10 am on the day of the tax sale. Please bring your photo ID and present it to the Levy Officer to receive your bidder ID card.
We do not accept mail, phone or fax bids. The opening bid for a particular property is the amount of tax due, plus penalties and all applicable other costs. The Tax Deed, not the property, is sold to the highest bidder. We require payment in full upon conclusion of the tax sale. Payment must be in the form of cash, certified check, cashiers check or money order. If there is any excess after paying taxes, costs and all expenses of a sale, the tax commissioner or tax collector may file an interpleader action in superior court for the payment of the amount of such excess. Such excess shall be distributed by the superior court to intended parties, including the owner as their interest appears and in the order of priority in which their interest exists (OCGA 48-4-5). Any properties not receiving a bid may be re-auctioned that afternoon at 3:00 p.m.
The tax sale purchaser receives a tax deed to the property. However, they cannot take immediate possession of the property, make any improvements to the property, evict any tenants or move onto the property. Georgia law allows the property owner or anyone with any right, title or interest in the property to repurchase (redeem) the Tax Deed. Until the right of redemption has been foreclosed or the title has ripened by prescription, a tax deed has the same force and effect as a lien.
Right of Redemption
When real property is sold at a tax sale, the owner, creditor or any person having an interest in the property may redeem (repurchase) the property from the holder of the tax deed within 12 months.
The redemption price is the bid amount, plus any taxes paid by the purchaser after the tax sale, plus any special assessments on the property, plus a 20% premium of the amount for the first year or fraction of a year which has elapsed since the date of sale and a 10% premium for each additional year or fraction of a year thereafter plus the sheriff and advertisement costs. The tax sale purchaser is responsible for determining the amount payable for redemption.
Redemption of the property puts the title conveyed by the tax sale back to the owner of record subject to all liens that existed at the time of the tax sale.
Notice of Foreclosure of Right to Redeem
After 12 months from the date of the tax sale, the purchaser at the tax sale may terminate or foreclose on the owner's right to redeem the property by causing a notice(s) of the foreclosure to be served by certified mail to the owner of record and to all interest holders which appear on the public record. In addition, the notice of foreclosure is to be published in the newspaper in the county in which the property is located once a week for four consecutive weeks.
For more information on Tax Sales, please click here to obtain a copy of our "Real Property Tax Sales" booklet.