Dictionary definition of the word lien. including key descriptive words

Selling a House with a Lien

Owning a property is a big step and requires financial stability, precise planning, and comes along with a ton of responsibilities. But buying a house is not an easy endeavor. Most people rely on a mortgage which allows them to afford the purchase. And a mortgage is nothing but a lien. Having a house in lien is not necessarily a bad thing and the comforting fact is that most homeowners have one. However, it may turn out to be a problem if you’re unprepared and uninformed on the matter. Today, we’ll break some of the popular misconceptions about home buyers and the process of selling a house in a lien. 

In this article, we’ll answer the question of what is a property in a lien. We’ll also look into different tax lien laws in Minneapolis, answer the question “can you sell a property in a lien in Minneapolis”, look into how you can sell a house as-is with a lien attached, and more. We’ll also explore how you can use a house sale for repayment in this situation. In other words, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions on the topic and provide valuable insights that will allow you to deal with a house lien in the best way based on your goals. 

The information we’ll share could be useful for homeowners, lenders, and real estate agents alike. You should also continue reading if you’ve ever wondered what’s necessary for selling a house fast.

A House With A Lien and How to Sell It

Dictionary definition of the word lien. including key descriptive words

What is a Property in Lien?

For starters, let’s answer the question what is a property in a lien in the first place. A lien on a property is a legal claim that a creditor puts against your property as a result of unpaid debts. Another easy way to look at a tax lien is the creditor’s method of collecting unpaid debts by planning to receive the owed amount via the sale of your property. Considering that property is among the biggest assets individuals possess, it’s only natural that they are the chosen ones. A house in lien is usually a result of unpaid taxes, mortgage payments that were not made on time, neglected bills, or other unpaid payments owed to contractors. 

A common question is “can you sell a property in a lien in Minneapolis”. Although the answer is yes, property liens can dramatically slow down the selling process. There are certain tax lien laws in Minneapolis that you should be familiar with in order to go through the process. In fact, selling your house can save you money. As with any other sale, you can sell your house to a cash home buyer or sell your house as-in with a lien attached. 

There are a few different types of liens on houses:

  • Voluntary liens – liens agreed on by both the creditor and the debtor. Mortgages fall under this category.
  • Involuntary liens – Liens forced by law and resulting from unpaid debts and obligations. In some cases, these liens may arise with no previous notice. If a debtor is unable to make regular tax payments on time, an involuntary lien is put on your property. These types of liens may prevent you from refinancing and selling your home or at the minimum, make the process extremely difficult. 
  • Property tax liens – This type of lien allows the government to legally sell your property to repay real estate taxes. Property tax liens take the highest priority regardless if they were placed last. They occur if you fail to pay your federal, state, or county tax.
  • Judgment liens – If a creditor sues you and wins the case, a judgment lien is placed on your property as a guarantee that they will receive payments. 
  • Mechanic’s liens – This type of lien can also be called a contractor’s lien and is a contractor’s claim for payment. The contractor in this case is usually from the home improvement business. 

Tax Lien Laws in Minneapolis

Now that you’re aware of what is a property in lien, it’s time to move on to tax lien laws in Minneapolis. We’ll start by noting that in Minnesota, a property lien may be used to collect a court judgement. If a person has been ordered by a judge and a court-approved settlement to pay another person or party money but they fail to, a judgement lien can be used to guarantee that the payment will be made one way or another. This type of lien ensures that the creditor will receive money from proceeds from the debtor’s property sale. 

Under Minnesota law, a debtor’s real estate property is subject to a judgement lien. This could be a house, a condo, land, or other types of property. It is set automatically on an existing and future property in the Minnesota county which has created the judgement. In cases where the property is located in a different county of Minnesota, the creditor makes a copy of the judgement with the county’s court administrator. If you’re wondering how low the judgement lien can last in Minnesota, the answer is ten years. 

The creditor will only be able to collect the money in consideration with a range of factors. This includes factors such as whether the property is the debtor’s primary residence, other liens, foreclosure or bankruptcy proceedings, and more. 

Use House Sale for Repayment

One of the ways to get rid of the lien is to sell your property to collect the money for repayment. If you’re interested to learn more about how to sell a property in lien in Minneapolis, we’ll provide some useful tips in the following paragraphs. You can sell your house to a cash home buyer or sell the house as-is with a lien attached. The proceeds from the sale of your homestead, however, are not obliged to be used for a repayment immediately. You may use the whole sum to invest in a different property yet any debts will still be collectible. 

Minnesota law states that you can sell your homestead and ensure that the proceeds from the sale are not exposed to collection for up to one year after the sale. You can use this one year to buy another homestead and after that pay off the judgement lien with the proceeds. 

How to Sell a Property in Lien in Minneapolis

The good news is that you can sell a property in a lien in Minneapolis. Now that we’ve answered the question of can you sell a house with a lien attached, it’s time to see the actual ways of doing it. Keep in mind that the sales process may be slowed down by a number of factors but it’s still possible.

For example, you can sell a house as-is with a lien attached. There are different ways to do this and it’s best to speak to a professional who can help explain how the selling process works. In most cases, you will need to get in touch with the lien holder to ask for a partial or full release of the lien. Also, remember that there are different ways to pay a lien, you don’t have to pay before closing. Get as much information on the type of liens and judgements that are against you or your property. Due to the vast range of liens, there are different laws for them. A negotiation will not always be possible. The next step is to find a potential buyer who is willing to invest in a property with a lien.

man selling house with lien to a cash home buyer

Sell House to Cash Home Buyer

One of the quickest ways to sell a house with lien is by finding cash home buyers. Selling your house fast for cash in Minneapolis is also the best way for you to exit the situation without any significant losses and lengthy procedures. One of the biggest problems with selling your house fast in Minneapolis is the fact that a lien may mean that the buyer’s mortgage approval may be canceled. Mortgage companies will rarely be willing to finance a property with a lien. 

However, by getting a fair cash deal with a cash buyer, this problem is eliminated. This process also guarantees a successful outcome without spending money on additional procedures that attempt to lift the lien or repay your debts in other ways. Furthermore, depending on the type of debt and the amount owed, a cash sale will give you the opportunity of putting a part of the cash sale in your pocket or invest it elsewhere. 

In most cases, cash buyers for homes with liens are experienced investors who are able to make an informed judgment and decision of the situation and don’t require financial backup from banks or other institutions. We buy houses in Minneapolis and our experts are always happy to help and provide more information.

There Are Many Options To Choose From

Although a house with a lien is often considered a negative and is definitely not something homeowners or buyers want to get involved in, the reality is that this is a common scenario and doesn’t always mean something bad. For instance, applying for a mortgage to purchase a property automatically puts a lien on it. But that doesn’t mean that you’re a criminal or that your credit history will be burned to the ground. We hope that this article will help you better understand property lien and will guide you towards making informed decisions in the future. If you’re interested to learn more about the topic, check out our case study that provides relevant insights. 


Kevin is a real estate investor dedicated to helping homeowners sell their properties quickly and without the stress and hassle of a traditional listing.

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