Sequim Real Estate in Sunny Sequim, Washington

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Archive for the ‘Contractor’ Category

Port Angeles Contractor Builds Homes

A Port Angeles contractor is building another home.  Rick Anderson of Anderson Homes, LLC, is building a custom home in Port Angeles.  This is a quality custom built 2,400 square foot home with a split master suite, 10 foot high ceilings, granite kitchen counters, a granite island, all stainless steel appliances (a Wolf 48″ gas range, designer hood, 2 Electrolux wall ovens), walk-in pantry, hot water radiant heat, solar tubes, attic storage space, and much more.  This is going to be a one-of-a-kind home.

Port Angeles Contractor Building

Port Angeles ContractorPort Angeles Contractor

This Port Angeles contractor is building this custom home on a beautiful lot with a view of the Strait and a beautiful and private treed back yard.  When retirees move to Sequim or Port Angeles to have their retirement home built, they expect that their home builder will build the home with great care and attention.  They expect that their general contractor will hire only the best subcontractors.

Port Angeles Contractor Builds Quality

Unfortunately not all contractors build with this kind of care and attention.  I love watching homes under construction by Anderson Homes, and obviously I enjoy taking progress photos from the beginning all the way through to completion.  By the way, you can see more of Rick Anderson’s homes on his website at

Watch this site for more progress photos of this Port Angeles Contractor building this home.

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  • Filed under: Contractor
  • Contractor misrepresentations and fraud in advertising is common place, according to the Washington Attorney General.   As a retired real estate attorney I’ve known this for many years, and that’s why I provide consumers with free public information, such as this blog.   There are many great contractors out there, but consumers can get caught by fraudulent advertising if they are not careful.

    Window sellers need to be transparent in their marketing. Roofers need to stay on top of the law. And home siding installers shouldn’t sidle up to consumers with inappropriately high-pressure sales pitches. That’s the gist of a letter sent Tuesday by the Washington Attorney General’s Office to more than 30 home remodelers around the state.

    “We want the home remodeling industry to do a makeover on their bad sales practices,” said Assistant Attorney General Jack Zurlini, of the office’s Consumer Protection Division.

    He said the letter is a general notice to educate businesses about unlawful practices, and doesn’t necessarily mean that recipients are breaking the law. In addition, the office is investigating several remodelers and recently reached a settlement with a Seattle-based window installer.

    “If your business boasts bogus discounts, pressures consumers to buy immediately or exaggerates endorsements, stop now – or hire an attorney because you’ll probably be hearing from us in short order,” Zurlini warned.

    “Bad actors give the industry a bum rap,” he added. “And that’s not fair to those who are doing the right thing. There are many good companies out there.”

    Among the AG’s list of no-no’s:

    • Inflated retail prices and bogus discounts: Officially called “false reference pricing” under the law, this scheme has been illegal for more than 70 years. It occurs when companies misrepresent that consumers are buying at a substantially discounted price. Companies try to conceal their scheme by having consumers agree to do just about anything to “earn” the bogus discounts, such as posting a sign in their yard.
    • High-pressure sales: Consumers are told that if they don’t buy now, the price will be higher in the future. Sometimes companies use scare tactics such as exaggerating the dangers posed by a small amount of mold found around a window. Sales pitches last for hours or are scheduled late at night so consumers are worn down and say “yes” just to get the sales person out of their home.
    • Fraudulent endorsements: Companies exaggerate awards or Better Business Bureau ratings to appear better than their competitors. Some fabricate endorsements or testimonials.

    Consumers who believe they may be a victim of such illegal practices may file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office. Complaints can be filed online at or request a complaint form by calling the Consumer Resource Center at 1-800-551-4636 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. weekdays.

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  • Filed under: Contractor
  • Home Builders and Low Ball Estimates

    Are Sequim home builders and Port Angeles home builders all the same? What about the low ball prices listed in advertisements? Can a builder really build a home at the same prices that were being quoted a decade ago?
    This raises another question. How can the average person who wants to have a home built tell if a contractor is telling him the truth about the costs associated with building a new home? And how does a person distinguish between good builders with integrity and honesty from builders who practice dishonesty and false advertising?

    As a real estate attorney I saw many clients who were in nightmare scenarios with bad builders. It is much more common than people realize. I talk to people regularly who have had horrible experiences with their builder. I recently called the Washington State attorney general’s office, and they told me they don’t handle such issues, that I should call the Department of Labor & Industries. I called L&I, and they said they don’t have jurisdiction, that I should call the attorney general’s office.

    No one wants to touch this issue, but where is consumer protection when you need it? Literally 100’s of innocent victims are getting hurt in the State of Washington, and the state rule is, “caveat emptor,” or “buyer beware.”

    I will attempt to address this issue with public education in several ways:

    1. Writing articles about how to find and interview a builder;
    2. What questions to ask a builder;
    3. How to compare apples with apples when interviewing more than one builder; and
    4. How to research a builder today with powerful Internet tools.
    We’ll start with these articles, and we’ll be adding much more, so check back from time to time. You can also email me at

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    Elderly Couple Ripped Off By Contractor

    Having a home built by a contractor can be a good or a bad experience. When it is bad, it is often very bad. The following story is a synthesis of many true client stories in Washington. I wrote this as part of a newsletter in June of 2001, but I could have written it yesterday.

    Once upon a time there was a lovely retired couple who found their dream property on which they decided to build the home they had planned for many years. Every nook and cranny of their retirement home had been meticulously designed. This would be their dream come true. Her kitchen and pantry was perfect, and his garage had built in shelves. Already, they could envision their grandchildren playing in the back yard surrounded by the red, yellow, and purple flowers and luscious green grass and shrubs. In their imaginations, they had the garden planted and the furniture arranged in every room in the house. Excitement was building for the couple who had worked long and hard to save enough to build their dream. All their labor and patience would now pay off, and they would live happily forever in their little home, which they thought might some day be pictured in Home & Garden magazine.

    They talked to the grocery store clerk about getting a referral for a good builder. The clerk was unable to help them so they sought a referral from a nice lady also doing her laundry at the local Laundromat. She suggested the yellow pages, which proved to be full of names of builders. Not knowing which one to choose, they picked one with the same last name as their best friends in California. The builder turned out to be very nice and quite knowledgeable. He readily agreed to bid lower than anyone else, and this only proved to the couple that he was in fact also the best builder in the area.

    The lovely couple signed a one page agreement entitled “Bid” with their builder and gave him a large check as a down payment. They then went to the bank to arrange a line of credit so the builder could take out his draws as he built the house.

    Many months after the home was to be completed and after many “extras” and other cost overruns, which the couple refused to pay, the builder walked off the job even though the house was only 93% complete. The lovely couple were quite frustrated and distraught. Not knowing what else to do, they sought a referral for a good attorney. After paying their new attorney a retainer and agreeing to pay large sums of money each and every month so long as their retirement pension should hold out, they went to live in their unfinished home, although it did not yet have an occupancy permit.

    This story is all too often repeated in Washington. Anyone can apply and get a contractor’s license if they pay a small fee and obtain a measly $12,000 bond. There are many excellent builders, but a few who tarnish the industry’s reputation and destroy some people’s dream. The nightmare stories are endless. A Woodinville woman, who wanted a better home for her severely disabled son, said her house was $243,000 over budget. Another couple were presented with an extra bill of $150,000, which they promptly paid because they did not want any conflict. A Longview man said his wife suffered a physical and emotional breakdown. The Washington attorney general’s office said it recorded 9,000 complaints about builders since 1990. In a recent year there were 1,361 complaints, and there is no question that many people do not go through the trouble of filing a complaint with the attorney general’s office.

    The problem can grow into the greatest nightmare a couple ever has, and it regularly does. Do not misunderstand the intent of this author. It is not to discourage you from building your dream home. It is not to malign builders, because out of the estimated 44,000 builders in Washington, there are many outstanding builders. My purpose is simply to help you practice a preventive approach, and with a little effort avoid a stressful nightmare.

    The nightmare involves a series of traps for the unwary with implications most don’t even consider. Often the home is 90 to 95% complete when the builder walks off the job. The builder is claiming the owner won’t release the last draw from the bank, and so he won’t finish the house until the owner agrees to pay the builder. The owner is claiming the builder has made numerous mistakes in the construction of the house, that the builder has been rude and offensive throughout the process, that he has not paid suppliers and laborers and as a result there are now threats of liens by these suppliers and subcontractors, and that the builder wants $7,000 or $25,000 or $56,000 more because of “extras” which the owner never authorized and the builder never discussed with the owner.

    The homeowner next sees an attorney. Letters and phone calls to the builder get nowhere, and a lawsuit is commenced against the builder. The builder has an attorney who files counterclaims against the owner, and the litigation that ensues is both expensive and time consuming, not to mention stressful.

    Avoid litigation at all costs, because no matter the result, you will be unhappy. Homeowners rarely win their case entirely and rarely recover their attorney’s fees. It just doesn’t happen. The best practice is preventive. Be absolutely certain the builder you hire is competent and trustworthy. The lowest bidder is not always your best choice. Due diligence in finding the right builder is worth taking the time to do it right.

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  • Filed under: Contractor
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    Chuck E. Marunde, J.D.

    Sequim Buyer's Agent (Atty Ret.)
    Founder and Broker of
    Sequim & Port Angeles Real Estate dba iRealty Virtual Brokers
    125 Olympic Ranch Ln, Sequim, WA
    (360) 775-5424

    From Los Angeles

    It's rare, but once in awhile life provides the perfect collaborator for an important endeavor such as buying your new home. For me that person was Chuck Marunde. His two decade background as a Real Estate Attorney, his prolific career as an author of articles and books on Real Estate and his forthright and moral character made choosing Chuck a no-brainer. Chuck is dedicated, thorough, incredible at the negotiating table, knowledgeable about all local laws & regs but, most importantly, Chuck loves what he does. And what he does is find his client the perfect property. Chuck isn't about making the sale, he's about making the sale that is OPTIMUM for his CLIENT and this makes Chuck a rare bird indeed. I love my new home in Sequim and I am indebted to Chuck for making it happen. Kevin E.

    From Seattle

    I’ve had the pleasure of working with Chuck over the past three years in selling my parent's estate. It was a tough time to sell during the housing recession, but Chuck always kept things on the positive side. With his real estate law background, he offers sound, practical advice. He helps you along with the process using discussions and reason, rather than opinions and speculations. If Chuck doesn’t know the answers, he will get them for you. In several instances, Chuck took the initiative to meet with county officials to get up-to-date facts about zoning and regulations. I was always impressed with his company’s tech savvy communi-cations and internet presence: weekly email updates, blogs, videos, links, Linked-in networking, etc. He is truly pioneering the future of buying & selling real estate. Brian M.

    From Florida

    We do our homework for the task at hand and we look for and expect to enlist partners that do the same. It was our good fortune to select Chuck Marunde of Sequim and Port Angeles Real Estate to represent us as a buyer's broker in our search for a home in the Sequim/Port Angeles area. Chuck's site is all encompassing and super fast compared to many others, he knows the market at every conceivable level and his guidance through the process of selecting and purchasing a home is priceless - above and beyond that of anyone with whom we have ever worked. Add to all this his 20 year background in real estate law and you have discovered a superb asset in the adventure of purchasing a home. Greg and Marilyn

    From Gilroy California

    As an out of state buyer unfamiliar with the area, it was important to me not only to have a real estate agent who knew the area well, but also one who knew the value of the properties. I chose Chuck because he is also a real estate lawyer and it is reassuring to have that extra degree working for you. I selected the houses I was interested in on line before taking a two day trip to Sequim to look at them in person. I sent my list to Chuck, who gave me feedback, then organized our tour so we could see 16 properties in a short time. He was very accommodating, driving me all over Sequim, and rescheduling appointments when we fell behind on our time. On day two, I found my home and we drafted an offer on it that evening. By the time I arrived back home on the plane the next evening, my offer had been accepted. Chuck was honest about what it would take to get me into my new home, while having my back the entire transaction. Since I was unable to relocate immediately after closing, he and his assistant Ade, have been taking care of many additional responsibilities for me. He was a pleasure to work with. Chris D.

    From Corona California

    The best decision I made, once I settled on Sequim as the ideal place to spend the rest of my days, was to hook up with Chuck Marunde as my broker/go-to guy. He happily took on the entire complicated merry-go-round associated with a long distance move that involved selling in Southern California (with a different agent) and buying in Sequim – all in the span of just over a month. The unexpectedly quick sale of my previous home was already a week into a 30 day escrow when I got to Sequim for my house hunt. We had two days to find my slice of heaven. And day one was less than stellar, each home having at least one major issue. The killer was the dream home that turned out to be an unmitigated disaster once we got inside. I was crushed. Chuck had his work cut out for him that night. And he worked his magic. On day two there was one beautiful possibility, but not quite right. Suffice to say, in the early afternoon we pulled into a driveway and the first words out of my mouth were “That’s my house.” 29 days later I took possession of my new home. Every sale has its issues, but throwing in the complications of a short escrow on top of 1200 miles of separation from all documentation, etc. gives new meaning to “challenging”. Thanks to his encyclopedic knowledge coupled with a great sense of humor, Chuck was able to keep me on an even keel when things got dicey. He knows when to step in and when to let it evolve. I cannot imagine making this move without him. Rebecca B.
    Sequim Real Estate

    From Bakersfield California

    "During the months of February and March 2012, Chuck showed my wife and I over two dozen homes from Port Angeles to Port Townsend. We found Chuck to be very helpful, friendly and courteous. With Chuck there is no pressure; It is all about finding the best home for the buyer. As a Buyer's Agent, Chuck will give you his honest opinion of a property, including a fair market price. In one instance Chuck wrote up an offer for us which was accepted. Chuck was very helpful arranging for home and well inspections which involved multiple trips to the property. Unfortunately, escrow failed to close when, during the home inspection process, it was determined that a septic system repair was needed which the seller was unwilling/unable to make. We will continue to work with Chuck as there is no better Buyer's Agent on the North Olympic" Bert and Sally

    From Los Alamos New Mexico

    "Over a year ago, during a visit to the Olympic Game Farm, we developed what we eventually called the “Sequim Syndrome.” We live in New Mexico and decided Sequim was where we wanted to live in retirement. On our second visit to Sequim, we met with Chuck and asked him to help us. Chuck's web site provides such amazing search capabilities. Chuck's site also contains a 1000 blog postings and a real estate video series detailing buying real estate in Sequim. We bought Chuck's book about Sequim real estate and set out to follow his advice carrying on an ongoing email and phone conversation with Chuck. Doing our due diligence “Marunde style” and using his MLS search site, we came up with about 50 homes that met our needs. We narrowed the list down to 15 properties that best met our needs. We came back to Sequim a third time with our list in hand, and Chuck spent two days with us showing us all the homes on our list. Not only did Chuck help us find that dream home, he spent time to educate us about the quality of construction, fair market values of various properties, home layouts, and the joys of Sequim living. We had a great time as we traveled from house to house. By mid afternoon of the second day, my wife said we had found “the house.” Chuck helped us draft our offer and sent our offer to the seller's agent. It turned out there was a second offer made on the property at the same time. Chuck's help to make a clean offer paid off. At breakfast two days later, we got a call from Chuck saying our offer had been accepted by the sellers. We are now back home in New Mexico. Chuck attends every inspection on our behalf, updating us at every turn by email and phone. Our dream home is becoming a reality because of Chuck and because we were smart enough to follow his advice. We absolutely would NOT have been able to do this without Chuck Marunde's expertise and enthusiasm. We recommend Chuck to everyone planning a move to Sequim, Port Angeles, or anywhere on the Olympic Peninsula. Chuck is a gold mine of information and expertise for home buyers everywhere, not just on the Olympic" Larry and Shirley
    Sequim Real Estate Bookstore

    From Sun Lakes Arizona

    "We are ex-Washington residents who currently live in Arizona. We had been searching the Puget Sound area four years for a waterfront property to build a retirement home when we first contacted Chuck Marunde through his website. We had made multiple trips to various areas but most of the Realtors we contacted simply sent us an email, provided no follow up and did next to nothing to help us locate a property. On our first trip to Port Angeles, after connecting with Chuck, we purchased our dream property. We now own a high bank waterfront lot overlooking the Straight of Jaun de Fuca, and are excited to become part of the Peninsula community." Paul and Linda

    From California

    "Andy Romano is a successful motion picture character actor with over 40 years in 'the Biz.' Mr. Romano has a home in beautiful Santa Barbara, California, but he chooses to live most of the time in Sequim, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula in the great Pacific Northwest. Why? In his own words, 'Because it's even more beautiful and surrounded by more beauty in this incredibly peaceful and quiet place. With respect to real estate agents or brokers, well my friend Chuck Marunde, owner of Sequim and Port Angeles Real Estate, is hands down the best there" Andy R.

    From Sequim

    I’ve known Chuck Marunde for several years. My wife and I bought and sold one house through his services, and now have another listed through him for sale. Whether Chuck was representing us as the buyer or seller, I am confident he always had our best interests at heart. He helped us set or negotiate a reasonable price, and made sure there was a clear and open line of communication. He responded rapidly to email and phone calls and always knew the best person to contact for the various services involved in a transaction. I have worked with quite a few real estate agents and Chuck is right at the top of my list of good ones. Actually, Chuck is first and foremost just a good person, and he carries his personal honesty and integrity over into his profession. He has the greatest depth of experience in real estate of any agent or broker I have known. His years of practicing real estate law prior to becoming a broker are evident in the meticulous care he takes with the process and documentation. I am impressed by the way Chuck has integrated internet services into his real estate business. He probably knows more about this process than any other realtor in the country. In this tight market it is important to use every possible means to spread the word about available properties…to reach the few people who might be interested in a particular property. Steve L.

    From The Netherlands

    "We contacted Chuck about six months ago to help find a retirement property in Sequim. We had visited Sequim several weeks before and decided that this was the place for us to retire. We liked the friendly people and the natural beauty of the area. We had been looking for some time in other parts of the country - California, Oregon, North Carolina, and Vermont. In most of these other areas, we found real estate agents that were knowledgeable but did not follow up with us to continue narrowing down real estate possibilities. Once we were out of earshot, communications would stop. That is one of the reasons we were interested in working with Chuck. Besides having great knowledge of both the local real estate market and of law, his testimonials on the internet indicated a willingness to actively communicate with his clients. Chuck demonstrated this immediately. Even before we met, he responded very quickly and helpfully to any email question. After arriving for a second visit to Sequim in September, we finally met Chuck face to face. He was friendly, encouraging, and readily shared good practical information. We worked with him on a number of candidate properties - including an offer on a property while visiting that week. Although we could not come to terms with the owners on the final property price, we look forward to continuing to work closely with Chuck. He is an invaluable resource to help us identify and purchase the retirement property that's right for us." Paul and Virginia

    From Fremont California

    We can't say enough about working with Chuck Marunde. Luck would have it that we discovered his web site, spoke with him on the phone and had an instant feeling that we had found our realtor. And we were right. With Chucks help and expertise, our longtime dream to retire to the Pacific Northwest came to fruition with Chuck assisting us in finding the perfect home for us. Buying a home is always a big decision and these days can be complex with unexpected delays etc. In fact, our whole experience from offer day to closing, was very smooth. Chuck took all the time we needed to explain processes and made us feel at ease, even though we lived 800 miles away, tying up loose ends and getting ready for the big move to our new home in Sequim. We were impressed with Chuck's ability to listen to our needs and understand our concerns in buying from a distance. Chuck kept us informed all along the way, during the process and was so good at getting right back to us if we had another question. All went so well and Chuck really went above and beyond for us, taking time out from his busy schedule to assist us with some details regarding our beautiful property, even after the closing, because we were not yet arrived there. Without hesitation, our son and his wife will be contacting Chuck this summer, as they plan to follow us to paradise in this lovely town. Thanks again Chuck, for everything! Mary and Jerry

    From Fontana California

    My husband and I went to Sequim intending to interview several realtors to find one to help us locate and buy a home in Sequim. We knew we wanted someone we could trust and who would have our best interests in mind. Since we would be handling the transaction from S. California this was very important to us. We met Chuck and looked no further. We felt a connection right away and spent some time looking at homes together so Chuck could get a feel for what we wanted. Well, we left Sequim having made an offer on a home which the owner accepted. Chuck has helped us through the purchase process. We are positive it would not have gone so smoothly without his help. We give him 4 thumbs up. Wally & Cathy

    From Tacoma

    Chuck Marunde’s level of expertise in real estate investment is amazing. His knowledge, experience and legal training have given me a dramatic advantage in real estate investing. He works hard to stay on the cutting edge of real estate marketing, sound advice and value-added service for his clients. Kirk Wald, Financial Planner

    From Wendell Idaho

    My wife and I moved to Sequim six weeks ago, and prior to our move here I contacted Chuck Marunde and enlisted his help as our buyer's agent. Once we got here, it took us about two weeks looking at houses, and Chuck did a superb job of showing us places and letting us make our own decisions and guide us through the purchase of our home. We now completed our transaction and are very happy. We would recommend Chuck to anybody. Don & Marilyn

    From Sequim

    "Buying property either commercial or residential can sometimes be a tricky proposition. That’s why I would recommend Chuck to help you with purchasing or selling property. His background as a real-estate lawyer and his no nonsense to the point advice will help you make the right decisions. Experience and Integrity, what you need when you can’t afford to make a mistake. Dail Hurdlow, CEO, Hurdlow Enterprises

    From Seattle

    I am an experienced real estate buyer, but I am not from the Sequim area. I am somewhat flexible, realistic, but also particular. So the question was, “how do you choose the RIGHT real estate agent?”

    I made my appointment with Chuck on a Sunday morning in March, 2013. He showed me 5 houses. Every house he showed me was within my parameters! I was amazed: a real estate who listened, did his research, and didn't waste my time showing me houses I would never buy! I made an offer a few days later. That was the easy part…

    Buying a house is always a stressful time in life. Advice to Buyers: choose an agent who is competent, communicates well, and has exceptional follow-up and follow-through! You will spend a lot of time with your agent during the process. Choose someone likable. Go with your gut. I got to know Chuck during the process, and he's a great guy!

    You need an agent who is competent to handle and help you negotiate the issues that come up during disclosure, home inspection, appraisal, etc. Chuck's competence is superb! I got truly professional, sound, straightforward advice.

    Chuck's communication skills are exceptional: phone, email, fax. He has a wonderful ability to stay "on-point" with what is actually important and doesn't lead you astray on issues that aren't so important.

    Chuck's turn-around time on questions, issue resolution, etc. was virtually always within 24 hours. He follows-up, follows-through. He does what he says he will do timely. This relieves a lot of Buyer stress!

    Having a difficult time finding the right agent? Simplify your life! Choose Chuck Marunde. I did. [Name withheld by request]

    Intro by Chuck Marunde

    From Sequim to California

    "In our Sequim real estate broker Chuck Marunde we found a Realtor who knew not only how to list a property, but most importantly, he knew how to sell a property. Chuck is very skilled in current technology and uses that skill to advertise your property nationally. We were very pleased with Chuck, his honesty and integrity." Jerry Levitan and Donna "Teva" Tetiva

    Who is Chuck Marunde?

    Chuck Marunde is the #1 Sequim Buyer's Agent, having sold more homes (by volume) to buyers than any other agent or any "team" of agents for the past seven years. He is the author of thousands of articles for buyers on this real estate blog, and he is the author of several real estate books for buyers and one for sellers. He is the creator of many free tools that buyers use and love every day. He is recognized as a national expert on real estate transactions, marketing, and negotiating. Please schedule your appointment to view homes with Chuck well in advance of arriving in Sequim.
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    Sequim Real Estate Agent
    Chuck Marunde Text or Call 360-775-5424