Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas will conduct the first sale in more than two years of delinquent Cook County property taxes on Saturday, Nov. 5.
About $163.4 million in unpaid 2018 property taxes (due to be paid in 2019) are due on 36,000 homes, businesses, and land. For 11,744 of these properties in Chicago and 7,700 such properties in suburban Cook County, owners owe less than $1,000.
Pappas is sending owners of all 36,000 properties a certified mailing informing them the county has scheduled their unpaid taxes for the upcoming sale, which would put a lien against their properties and constitute the first step in a process that can end with losing a property.
Owners can avoid the tax sale by paying the delinquent taxes and interest before the sale begins. To see if your taxes are delinquent—and make a payment—visit cookcountytreasurer.com and select “Avoid the Tax Sale.” You can search by address or by Property Index Number (PIN).
“About 75% of the taxes offered for sale are for properties in majority Black and Latino communities,” Pappas said. “That’s why Black and Latino Houses Matter, my program to help homeowners find refunds and apply for tax exemptions, is so important.”
Owners may be unaware the taxes on their properties are headed to the tax sale because the U.S. Postal Service has returned bills and subsequent notices on 17,702 properties.
Also, as many as 207 seniors may be missing a senior exemption, and 184 seniors may be eligible for a senior freeze, two exemptions that could reduce their tax bill. “Everyone should visit cookcountytreasurer.com for more information,” Pappas said.
Per Illinois law, the annual tax sale traditionally occurs 13 months after the due date, but officials delayed recent sales because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Pappas plans to conduct a sale for 2019 unpaid taxes in May and for the 2020 taxes in November 2022.
For more information, call (312) 603-6202.