Montcalm County unloads land at foreclosure auction

By Elisabeth Waldon • Last Updated 12:26 pm on Monday, August 19, 2013

A hopeful bidder raises his bright orange card in the back bleachers of the Sheridan Community Center during Friday’s foreclosed land auction hosted by the Montcalm County Treasurer’s Office. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon 

SHERIDAN — The annual Montcalm County foreclosed land auction took place at a new location this year.

Montcalm County Treasurer JoAnne Vukin said the move from the old courthouse to the Sheridan Community Center was well worth it, as more than 100 people registered to bid in Friday’s auction.

“I was very pleased with the turnout,” Vukin said. “It seems like there were more people than we have ever had upstairs in the commissioners’ room (in the old courthouse).”

The county sold 34 of the 65 properties that were up for grabs. The remaining 31 properties will be sold at a no minimum bid land auction in about a month.

The county needed to earn $237,000 to cover expenses on the foreclosed properties. A total of $262,350 was generated Friday.

“I am happy I was able to at least cover my expenses,” Vukin said. “I am hoping for another $75,000 at the next sale. I would encourage everyone to come to the second sale as there will still be several very good parcels that will start out at a very small amount.”

Among Friday’s successful bidders were Donald and Patricia Huddleston of Greenville. The Huddlestons bid on and were awarded a property they thought they had purchased before.

The Huddlestons thought they had purchased two parcels about a year ago through the Montcalm County Sheriff’s foreclosure sale. However, due to a mistake in the paperwork, they had only purchased one parcel with a home, and not the adjoining parcel with a shed. They didn’t learn about the mix-up until months later.

The Huddlestons have been awaiting Friday’s auction ever since in the hopes of officially purchasing the property with the shed on Bracy Avenue in Greenville. They were the lone bidders on the property Friday and were awarded the parcel at the minimum bid of $1,800.

“I’m very happy that it’s all over,” said Patricia Huddleston, while holding her 6-month-old son Anthony. “It’s a relief.”

Among other properties sold Friday was the former Village Inn Bar & Restaurant in Pierson, which sold to an online bidder at the minimum bid of $17,250.

A two-story home on East Boyer Road in Carson City had a minimum bid of $850, but Daniel Blancher had to fight for it. He was awarded the property after he bid $9,900 against other hopeful bidders.

John Chadwick was able to acquire two properties Friday — one with a small home on Oak Street in Coral for $4,500 and another on Division Street in Coral for the minimum bid of $2,100.

One notable property that did not sell Friday was a ranch-style home on 40 acres on Howard City-Edmore Road (M-46) in Reynolds Township. The property was listed at a minimum bid of $6,500, but at the last minute, an attorney for the bank that held the mortgage arrived at the Sheridan Community Center and served the county treasurer’s office with papers granting a temporary restraining order against selling the property.

Vukin is confident the issue will be resolved in time for the property to go up for sale at the no minimum bid auction in about a month.

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