That's right, I own a real gold mine and I bought it at a tax sale for peanuts. All I had to do was pay the back-owed property fees then pay the new ones for a couple of years and I can head up there with a pick and shovel and strike it rich! Simple, huh? |
Well, it's not really that easy. There are a lot of different properties that come up as available at a tax sale and some of them are mining claims. If you don't have any experience in this field, then it might sound like fun to buy some of them up and do a little prospecting to see if you can make some money.
To begin with, these mining claims are not full property claims. What you are usually buying are the rights to mine under the surface of the property and oftentimes that is limited to only certain depths, while someone else might own the rights at a different depth. If you go to your local county department of records and take a look at a diagram of the mining claims in a once active area you will be surprised to see just how many claims there are, and how they overlap each other all over the place. Imagine dumping a jigsaw puzzle on the table and each piece is a different mining claim and you pretty much get the picture.
This is because mines can tunnel for miles following mineral and ore veins that zig and zag. Where one mine entrance may be a hundred yards from another, once they start digging they may both hit different sections of the same vein heading towards each other, or they may hit separate veins at different veins that will eventually cross over and under each other.
Where this comes into play if you buy one at a tax sale is that you might only own the mining rights at a depth of 200-300 feet while somebody else owns them at 100-200 feet. Throw in the possibility that someone else owns the actual property rights and has a house already built where you were wanting to dig a tunnel and you can see where this gets a little bit confusing.
If you really want to get into this, start by doing a little research into how mining claims are filed in your area. Take a trip to the county courthouse or wherever else they keep these records and ask someone there to explain it to you. Also get a list of these claims that are coming up at a tax sale then head over to the courthouse again and look them up so that you know what you are bidding on.
Also keep in mind that these mines are probably dead ends and available because they were a bust with nothing worth mining in them. Someone made the claim, then prospected a bit and found that it wasn't worth working.
I bought my gold mine certificate at a tax sale so that I could have something cool to frame and hang in my office as a conversation piece. For that it's worth the few bucks I pay a year to own it, but I'm not going to strike it rich.
Looking to find a good tax sale? You can check online with CivicSource! Take a look at this great site: www.civicsource.com/a>.
Related Articles -