Sheldon duplex for auction

Fifteen Sheldon residences including this duplex at 815 Fifth Ave. are up for auction via the O’Brien County Sheriff’s Department.

SHELDON—Fifteen Sheldon residential properties will be up for grabs during an O’Brien County Sheriff’s Department sale on Nov. 14.

“First sale starts at 9 a.m. and, yeah, it’ll be a long day and we hope to get them done in a timely and efficient manner so that everyone is satisfied,” said Lt. Dean Fjeld of the sheriff’s department.

The 15 properties belonged to Wayne and Debbie Den Hartog of rural Sheldon.

Fjeld noted it was a bit out of the norm for the sheriff’s department to oversee the sale of this many properties from the same ownership group.

“When you get into the larger metropolitan areas, you are going to see that more often, but for a rural area like us, it’s somewhat unusual,” he said. “What happens a lot of times you get people who have one or two properties and it may happen, but to have 15 at one time, it’s a little on the unusual side.”

Fjeld explained why so many properties were on the auction block.

“Basically, it was just a foreclosure action taken by the mortgage holders — there was judgments against them for the amount that was owed on the mortgages — and then it resulted in what’s called a ‘special execution,’” Fjeld said. “It’s a court order that directs the sheriff to sell the property to satisfy the amount owed for the debt or the judgment against the property.”

The sale will begin at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14, and each auction will take place 15 minutes after the last one starts with the last property going up for bid at 1:30 p.m.

“We’re going to have a system set up to allow us to keep it as organized as possible to allow us to get the paperwork done in a timely manner and have it structured so that the people that interested in certain properties and not others don’t have to be there the whole day,” Fjeld said.

Interested parties are required to be there in person and there are is no way to bid online or over the phone.

“What they do is they make a bid on the property like they would do at any other auction and then they are required to be able to produce a certified check in the amount within a short time — probably about an hour and a half,” Fjeld said. “After placing the bid, they would be allowed to go to their lending institution and secure financing and then bring back a certified check for the full amount of their bid.”

Although handling the sale of 15 properties at once is unusual, Fjeld said they are preparing for it like a typical sheriff’s sale, which is far more common.

“It kind of cycles it seems like,” he said. “Lately, we’ve seen more of them; you just never know when you are going to get them.”