Trustee Sales Locations Keep Changing

The sound of the helicopter landing was deafening and roaring just about 100 feet above our heads. This was happening on the roof of the building where we stood and causing a lot of concern to all of us at the trustees’ sales at the Los Angeles courthouse in Norwalk. All of the noise and confusion was over shortly and the crier at the courthouse continued calling trustees’ sales postponements, cancellations, and sales over the noise of the idling helicopter. All of this seemed kind of bizarre—but was treated as a common occurrence by all who attended sales in these public areas.

It turned out, however, that not everyone was as complacent about the crowds of people milling about the central figure, the crier, at the entrance to the Superior Court at that location. Apparently, the noisy helicopter landing was not that intimidating, but the difficulty of those on public business trying to navigate through the same entrance of the courthouse where the attendees at the daily trustees’ sales were congregated was another matter.

Because I attend the trustees’ sales in many counties, I did not return to the Los Angeles county sales in Norwalk for a short period and was perplexed to find those sales were no longer held at the courthouse in Norwalk but at a fountain in a park in the not-so-nearby City of Pomona and away from bustle of the general public. How come? I thought the sales had to be held closer to the county courts and at the County Recorder’s, Assessor’s, and Tax Collector’s Offices.

It turns out that many of the public figures who waded through the humanity massed at the trustees’ sales held regularly in at the busy courthouse in Norwalk felt that the public could meet the sale location requirements of California Civil Code 2924 and be better served elsewhere.

That more elitist attitude is not unique, and we find that many of the old courthouse locations for the trustees’ sales within the campuses of the county offices are gone. Those of us old-timers who belittle the changes called progress find ourselves begrudgingly moving from the usual hallowed, well-known, and revered courthouse locations for the sales to the less-traveled, less interesting locations. Of course, the civil codes don’t really say that sales involving lenders and interested bidders in the business of foreclosures had to be smack in the middle of all the county offices. It just seemed a lot more convenient.

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