Smith County tax foreclosed properties will be sold online, not on the courthouse steps

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) – Buying foreclosed property on the steps of the Smith County Courthouse will soon be a thing of the past. In February 2023, the monthly auction will go live.

“On the one hand, it’s definitely a time saver,” said Jim Lambeth of Linebarger Attorneys at Law. “It’s going to benefit the sheriff’s department not having to have labor on the courthouse steps between ten and four selling properties.”

Lambeth says it has traditionally been local buyers who show up, but he believes the move will attract buyers from other areas.

“In counties where these properties are being sold online, we are selling more of them. 97% of them are actually sold at that initial sheriff’s sale. And then of those, the vast majority of them sell for way more than the initial minimum bid.

Florida-based company RealAuction will provide the software online and showed us how it works using a demo site.

CEO Lloyd McClendon said the benefits of moving online are to help both bidders and owners by increasing the selling price…

“It really helps the owner get full market value,” McClendon said.

“The extra money that’s brought in above the minimum bid goes to the original owner or original owner,” Lambeth said.

And while the auction will move online, the posting rules remain the same.

“We will always have our same advertising rules. These properties are advertised in the newspaper no more than 20 days before the sale and no less than 10 days before the sale. They will also be announced on our website at”

And while online auctions won’t begin for Smith County until February, Lambeth says resources will be offered ahead of time to familiarize buyers with how it works.

“We will have webinars available by February, so any interested buyers know how to proceed,” Lambeth said.

The date and times of the auction will remain the same: the first Tuesday of the month from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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