Sheriff’s sales of real property are held on Friday mornings at 9:30 a.m. in the rotunda (main entrance) area of the Whatcom County Courthouse. If the time set for sale is other than 9:30 a.m., it will not be conducted by the Sheriff and you should contact your information source for questions. Other parties also conduct real property sales in this manner, and they may take place at the same time(s) in the lobby of the Whatcom County Courthouse.
Order to Sell
Sheriff’s Sales are “judicial foreclosures” and the order to sell comes from the Superior Court Clerk. We are selling only the judgment debtor’s interest in the real estate. It is subject to all existing liens and encumbrances. To find out any lien information, you may need to do a title search though a company authorized to do this. We have limited information about the sale property since we do not need to know any information other than the address and legal description to conduct our sales. It is not possible for potential purchasers to view the interior of the structure prior to the sale.
The property sold may have a redemption period from 0 months to 1 year. Redemption means that the owner may pay back the amount bid at the sale plus interest, taxes, etc. in order to “redeem” his property and become the owner again. If you have legal questions about this procedure, you should contact your attorney for direction, or read the Revised Code of the State of Washington pertaining to Redemption.
The sales of real property conducted by the Sheriff are published in one of 3 newspapers in Whatcom County, The Bellingham Herald, The Lynden Tribune or the Record Journal. It is the choice of the judgment creditor as to which newspaper they wish to use for publication. The Sheriff’s Notice of Sale will be published once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to any sale.
If you bid at the sale, you must provide cash or cashier’s check made payable to the Superior Court Clerk’s Office issuing the Writ of Execution or Order of Sale by 2 p.m. that day or the sale will go to the next highest bidder, no exceptions. There is usually an opening bid from the judgment creditor; however this figure is not available until a day or two before the sale date.
The Sheriff’s Office also sells personal property to satisfy court judgments. The types of property we sell vary greatly but we sell vehicles most frequently. Per statute, the Sheriff’s Office advertises personal property sales on the bulletin board located on the first floor of the Whatcom County Courthouse, on the bulletin board on the first floor of the Bellingham City Hall and on the bulletin board in the lobby of the Sheriff’s Office.
Location & Bidding
The sales are held at 10 a.m. at the location where the property is being stored. Please see the sale notice for information on particular sales. As above, if you bid at the sale, you must provide cash or cashier’s check made payable to the Court Clerk’s Office issuing the Writ of Execution by 2 p.m. or the sale will go to the next highest bidder, no exceptions. There is usually an opening bid from the judgment creditor; however this figure is not available until a day or two before the sale date.
If you are the successful bidder, we will provide you with a Bill of Sale. There is no right of redemption in personal property sales; however, the items are sold subject to any liens in place.