Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Vacant or Occupied?

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Vacant or Occupied?

Article excerpt

Mortgage lenders and other creditors of a property up for tax sale had better pay close attention to whether the house is vacant or occupied when it is sold.

In a recent case, after an Allegheny County resident failed to pay taxes on her home, the county sold the property at a tax sale to a real estate developer.

But the owner also had a mortgage with a bank.

Under Pennsylvania law, anyone who has an interest in a property sold at a tax sale has a right to redeem the property by paying all debts and costs associated with the sale. The person must also file a redemption petition within nine months of the execution of the sheriff's deed.

The bank filed a redemption petition five months after the sheriff's deed. But the buyers claimed that the petition was filed too late because the property was vacant at the time of the sale. …

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