Pay taxes or risk property

The City of Kelowna is putting delinquent taxpayers on notice. Pay up, or risk losing your property.

The city recently published a list of 82 properties, residential and commercial, that are being put on the auction block for failure to pay property taxes for the past three years.

The properties will be removed from the auction if taxes, plus all applicable penalties, are paid in full prior to 9 a.m. on the day of the sale, Monday, Sept. 25.

Property owners may also buy back their property within a year of the tax sale auction by paying all back taxes and penalties in full.

While the list seems large, Angie Schumacher in the city's tax department says it's in keeping with other years and will drop considerably as auction day nears.

"It's typical of what we see each year. People tend to wait until closer to the last minute to get their finances together," she said.

"We don't want to have a tax sale, that's the goal. Most will be off the books come next Monday."

As of Tuesday morning, the list was down to 72 properties.

Last year, Schumacher says only one property went to auction. The previous year, four or five.

Prospective buyers must meet the upset, or minimum price, which equals all outstanding taxes, penalties and interest and Land Title Office fees.

Outstanding taxes range from a low of $923 to a high of $217,000 for a commercial property on Vaughan Avenue.

If an auction is held, it would take place at 10 a.m. in council chambers.

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