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Buying a Home is About Compromising

Buying a home is all about compromise. Which kitchen would you prefer, the one on the left or the one on the right? The kitchen on the right is brand new with a hardwood floor and modern new appliances. But would you guess that the home on the left sold for $525,000 and the home on the right is listed for sale at $258,000? The rest of the house and the property account for the difference, but money–more of it–gives you more choice. Even with a lot of money, buying a home is about compromising. There is so such thing as the perfect home on the perfect lot with the perfect view. But you can hope to come close, and the higher your budget, the closer you can get to that ideal home.

Buying a Home

Buying a Home and Compromise

Buyers often say to me, I wish I could mix and match. This lot is perfect. If only the last house was on this lot . . .  And location is a major challenge, because I have shown clients the perfect home and property, but it is way out of town or on the far west side of Port Angeles, and they don’t want to be that remote. One could only wish that buying a home was easier.

Buying a Home

Searching online and reviewing photos and location is one of the best ways to filter. But let me share what many of my clients do. They search, filter, and email me their most interesting properties asking me for my thoughts. I’m able to describe most of these homes in great detail, because I’ve shown them, and I can talk about the driveway, the neighborhood, and how far it is from your favorite stores. Just another way we take customer service seriously for our clients. Buying a home ought to be interesting and fun, and it always is for my clients. But I would also say that buying a home for 99% of my clients is about compromise.

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Port Angeles Home with a Mountain View

I love this Port Angeles home with a mountain view, and not just any mountain. This is Hurricane Ridge out the window, and it’s beautiful. This home sits on 5 private acres with a fenced back yard, all on one level with no stairs and ADA qualified. There are no stairs from the garage into the house. There’s an emergency generator, too.

Port Angeles home with a mountain view

Port Angeles Home With a Mountain View

This is a custom built home with high quality materials and workmanship in a gorgeous area up Deer Park Road but only 15 minutes from the hospital. Hurricane Ridge is a great view from the living room windows. The open floor plan is what so many retirees want. You can be cooking in the kitchen while holding a conversation with your spouse who is sitting in the living room and watching TV.

Port Angeles Home With a Mountain View From the Dining Room

With 5 private acres and an unhindered mountain view, this is a rare find, especially at this price. You learn more about this home by going online at the MLS at Port Angeles Home with a Mountain View.

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Port Angeles Mountain View

Looking for a custom built home with a great Port Angeles Mountain View? This home is almost midway between Sequim and Port Angeles, and it has a view of the Olympic Mountains. As you can see from the photo below, and in the photos you can view in the link below, this is a home with lots of natural light. The large windows face south and capture the sun all day long filling this home with a warm glow that soothes the soul in stressful times.

Port Angeles Mountain View

Port Angeles Mountain View

Port Angeles Mountain View Home for Sale

You can see more photos and all the details on this home at Port Angeles Mountain View Home. I wrote this in the MLS narrative: “Port Angeles cedar home with incredible mountain view, 30 foot ceiling in living room, lots of windows facing the mountains, master suite with mountain view, very comfortable home and special rooms beyond the bedrooms for reading or hobbies.”

The master suite is on the second floor, so if you don’t want stairs, this home may not be your dream home, but if stairs are okay, you definitely want to see this home. This home was custom designed and custom built specifically to capture this mountain view. There is a huge pantry behind the kitchen, and you’ll find a loft in the home with room for a reading chair where you can fall asleep, and the wife won’t be able to find you. If you are looking for a Sequim or Port Angeles mountain view, this may be it.

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This Port Angeles car garage comes with a luxury home and an incredible panoramic water view. Looking across to Victoria, B.C., this is one of the most beautiful luxury homes on the Olympic Peninsula with 10 acres backed up to mountain forests with ultimate privacy. The kitchen is a chef’s dream. Then there are several garages + a 30×40 Port Angeles car garage well equipped. The house is completely wired with fiber optics, and every outlet and every light is programmable. Watch the video for a special viewing of this Port Angeles car garage.

Port Angeles Car Garage Video

Port Angeles Car Garage Description

30′ X 40′ free-standing shop, fully finished, complete shop/garage, 20′ automatic garage door, double man doors with finishing pad, 8000 Ib. post vehicle lift, compressor, entire building plumbed with outlets for compressor, sand/parts blasting station, hot and cold running water, built-in enter-tainment center, wired for cable, satellite and internet, 16′ built-in shop bench, storage shelving throughout, full security system, welding station, multiple pegboard walls for storage, wired for both 120 and 220, plus 36′ x 25′ garage with 3 individual bays and 2 oversized bays, automatic openers, built-in utility shower/dog wash station, 11′ x 9′ utility room, wired for multiple refrigerator/freezers, plus carport for your trailer or extra cars, 30′ x 14′ paved, covered carport, 10′ x 10′ sealed utility storage unit (perfect for mower/atv & attachments], with built-in shelving.

Port Angeles Car Garage Viewing

This is one of a kind and when it’s gone, there isn’t another like it in the entire Northwest.  Call Chuck Marunde for a private viewing of this Port Angeles Car Garage.

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Port Angeles Real Estate for Sale

Looking at Port Angeles Real Estate?  This Port Angeles home is what many retirees are looking for.  It is a single level home with three bedrooms, two baths, a guest unit built in one end of the home, a super large garage with room for a shop in addition to two cars, and a separate building which has a hot tub in it now.  The yard is a low maintenance yard, and it is located between Port Angeles and Sequim on the Old Olympic Highway.  At $224,900 this is undoubtedly one of those listings that sells within a reasonable period of time, because this really is what so many retirees are looking for.

Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles Real Estate

 

Port Angeles Real Estate Details

Learn more about this home and see more photos at Port Angeles Real Estate.  This home is over 2,100 square feet, has a living room, a family room, and a large second living room in the guest unit.  The guest unit also has a kitchen without a stove, and a modern bathroom as you will see in the photos.  The master bedroom has a walk-in closet as large as some bedrooms, perfect for that large shoe rack that you have always dreamed of having.

Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles real estate tends to be a little less than Sequim, and if you can find the right home in the right area, you are likely to get a good price on the Port Angeles side.

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Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles real estate is selling.  I’m very pleased to announce the sale of another beautiful water view home west of Port Angeles with a stunning panoramic water view.  While this home sits up high on the hill as you can see in this photo, it is still close enough to the beach to hear the crashing waves, a sound that is music to the ears.  I wanted to share the news of this sale and a little about Port Angeles real estate just a few minutes west of Port Angeles, because most people don’t compare this area with Sequim.  Of course, there are fewer properties like this available out west, and this one is definitely a diamond discovered.

Port Angeles Real Estate is Selling

Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles Real Estate Best Kept Secret

For years I have argued that this area just 10 to 15 minutes west of Port Angeles is one of our best kept secrets on the Olympic Peninsula.  But the vast majority of retirees have told me either that they want Sequim or that west of Port Angeles is simply too far out of town in the boonies.  Sequim real estate tends to get more attention than Port Angeles real estate.  And if you are a retiree who has been planning to retire in Sequim for many years, and you have fallen irrevocably in love with Sequim, then Sequim it is.

This story is about clients who looked at homes in Sequim and after seeing this home, it was the end of the search.  I represented this delightful couple from out of town as their buyer’s agent.  I love being a buyer’s agent, because I can give my clients 20 years of real estate law experience and many years of negotiating experience as a real estate broker.  But the greatest thing is I cost my clients nothing as the seller pays my commission, even though I work exclusively for my buyers against the seller’s interests.  You’ve got to love that.  I do.  My clients do.

Port Angeles Real Estate a Bargain

This home has two bedrooms plus a den, which could be a third bedroom or a guest room, and two bathrooms.  It has over 1,900 square feet all on one level with a large garage attached and a shed for yard work and supplies.  It has a large kitchen with an island with a chopping block surface.  The site plan for this home was well planned.  You get the idea immediately that this home sits in the perfect place and position on this extraordinary water view lot.  The water view is of the International waterway between Washington and British Columbia, and at night you can see the lights of Victoria across the Strait.   This is something many do not know about west of Port Angeles–it has majestic water views.  In this photo, I’m standing near the hot tub.  You could sit in the hot tub with a glass of wine and look out at one of the most beautiful expansive views of the ocean anywhere on the west coast.

This home was listed at $399,000, and it sold for somewhat less, but can you imagine what it would sell for on the California coast?  Port Angeles real estate is one of the best kept secrets on the west coast so please don’t tell anyone else.

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Port Angeles Real Estate Investing

Is investing in Port Angeles real estate a good idea, and is the timing right?  No, if you buy the wrong house; no if you buy the right house in the wrong area; and no if you buy the right house in the right area at the wrong price.  But investing in Port Angeles real estate in this current market could be one of the best investments you ever make.  The emphasis is on being able to identify the right home in the right area and negotiating a price that pencils into a good long-term investment.

Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles Real EstatePort Angeles Real Estate Example

Buying a home as an investment means getting a reasonable rate of return on your money.  It means putting hard earned money into an asset that will bring you two things in the future:  1.) a cash flow that is a good rate of return, and 2.) the likelihood of a great long-term appreciation.  (Also see my previous article entitled Real Estate Investing and Creating Wealth.

It may be obvious that buying the right house in the right area are two keys to a good real estate investment, but it isn’t so obvious to all investors.  Many have purchased homes that they cannot sell many years later because they violated one or both of these two elements.  I can’t articulate in this short space how to identify a good house in a good area in Port Angeles real estate, but I know it when I see it.  This reminds me of what Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart wrote in his opinion in Jocobellis v. Ohio (1964):

“I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description [“hard-core pornography”]; and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that.”

Port Angeles Real Estate Rentals

Rental rates are relatively low in Port Angeles, so if you get a 80% or higher mortgage, you won’t have a positive cash flow for any houses priced over $220,000, or less.  Payments on a mortgage of $176,000 (after a down payment of 20%) at 4.0% (today’s going rate) on a 25 year amortization schedule would mean payments of $928, not counting taxes and insurance.  A simple 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with 1,800 square feet in a nice area will rent for $800 to $1,200, depending on the house condition, quality, and location.  So it will be very hard to break even or have a positive cash flow for houses above $220,000.

Of course, if you pay all cash for your Port Angeles real estate, you won’t worry about getting a positive cash flow, but you still need a home that is very sellable in order to capture your appreciation on the day you do decide to sell.  This is a critical element of successful investing.  Trying to sell a home no one wants is a disaster, and you might be surprised to learn how many first time investors have made this mistake.

In my opinion, this is a great time to invest.  Just be sure you stick to the solid principles of investing in your Port Angeles real estate.

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Port Angeles Real Estate

Port Angeles Real EstatePort Angeles real estate is a great buy, and most people know this is a buyer’s market.  The inventory of homes for sale is large, but the inventory of the best homes in the Port Angeles real estate market is not that big.  The market consists of a lot of average, unusual, or mediocre homes for sale and another category of homes:  beautiful custom homes in great areas listed at reasonable prices.  It’s this later category of homes that is selling in this Port Angeles real estate market.

Port Angeles Real Estate is Selling

Port Angeles real estate is selling to discerning buyers, and there are some extraordinary deals to be had right now.  The interesting thing is that the small percentage of homes that are beautiful and are in the best areas and reasonably priced are not going to last.  These homes are being cherry picked every single month, and those are the homes I’m selling every month.

Port Angeles Real Estate – Home and Shop

This Port Angeles home is a beautiful custom home with a kitchen you might want to live in.  Well, why write about it when I can just show you this video tour.

Port Angeles Real Estate for Sale

To see more photos and the full listing details of this home, go to Port Angeles custom home and shop for sale.   This custom home in the Port Angeles real estate market is brought to you by Sequim and Port Angeles Real Estate and Chuck Marunde.

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“More sellers are dissatisfied with their real estate companies these days, griping mostly about the marketing of their home and some of the other services offered by the firm with which they’re working, according to a report released by J.D. Power and Associates this week.”  This quote is from the Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch.  This probably does not surprise you.  There are as many complaints about real estate agents as lawyers and auto mechanics.  But I have observed there is an increasing dissatisfaction with listing agents.  Why is that?  There are several logical reasons.

First, let’s get the obvious out of the way.  This is the worst real estate market for selling a home I’ve seen going back 30 years in real estate.   To state the obvious, it is harder to sell a home in this real estate recession.  That’s true in Sequim and Port Angeles as it is in so many parts of the country.  It’s no surprise that homeowners who hire a real estate agent to list and market their home are feeling dissatisfied when nothing happens, nothing meaning “the home hasn’t sold.”  But there are more substantive reasons so many sellers are not pleased with their agents.

There has been a dramatic shift in real estate sales and marketing.  Traditional real estate brokerage is struggling with this gigantic change, and many agents are going out of business, not just because the market is slow.  The vast majority of consumers readily acknowledge that print newspapers and magazines no longer are the big tools for selling homes.  The Internet and powerful technology has changed the game plan, and nearly all buyers are now using the Internet to search for and find their next home.  This has nullified the power of traditional sales media.  As consumer demand has shifted, tools have been developed to meet that demand, but the super majority of traditional real estate agents have not gotten on board.  It is such a huge shift, that agents must re-invent themselves, and you can image how uncomfortable that is for most agents.  Consumers may not comprehend the extraordinary changes in sales and marketing that have been taking place behind the scenes, but they do comprehend that something is wrong with a real estate model that uses old methods and old sales language to advertise their home, especially when the results are nil.  As a result, sellers find themselves dissatisfied with their agents.

There’s one other significant reason sellers are dissatisfied with agents and traditional real estate brokerage.  We live in a time when all of us have been so thoroughly bombarded by sales pitches all our adult lives, we feel like we can say, “Heard it all before, been there, done that.  Not interested.  Thank you.  Goodbye.”  Imagine for a moment that you could meet a professional real estate agent who has made the shift from the old to the new, and is using the most powerful technologies to sell homes today.  Is there anything he could say to you that would turn on a light bulb and suddenly give you the confidence to know that this agent knows how to market your home?  I can answer question.  The answer is, “No.”  Let me explain why.

People, and I do mean all of us, have become so skeptical, so jaded with sales pitches, lied to by so many sales ads in every industry, that we don’t know how to discern the real thing form the rest of the pack anymore.  Let me make the point another way.  If a gold salesman came to your home and told you he could sell you gold at a 30% discount over other salesmen, you would most likely send him away politely.  Who hasn’t learned, “If it sounds to good to be true, it is,” or “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”  But suppose another salesman came to your door and opened his brief case and showed you a dozen gold bricks that he said he would sell you right then and there for a 30% discount.  What would you do?  I know what the vast majority of people would do.  So skeptical are we that you and I would probably send that salesman packing, too.  We wouldn’t trust him, even if he was legitimate.

And so it is with Realtors.  Most sellers can’t tell the difference between me (and the other true professionals who have made the shift) and the rest of the pack still using the same techniques and sames pitches.  But I can assure sellers that there is a vast difference between Realtors these days.  Because of the dramatic shifts in marketing, the differences are greater today than ever.  Your job is to figure that out.  After all, how many days on market do you want your house to sit before the price is low enough to attract some offers?

[Megan Kelly did not actually interview Chuck Marunde.  This is his effort at humor, although, should you read this Megan, Chuck is available for an interview.]

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Port Angeles real estate is personified in this gorgeous custom home built on a one acre parcel that is available.

Port Angeles Real Estate for Sale:

Extraordinary custom home, living room with three-sided propane fireplace, vaulted ceiling, formal dining room has oak flooring, vaulted ceiling and French doors to back deck. Gourmet kitchen with designer lighting, custom cabinets and appliances. Master suite with bath featuring heated floor and Jacuzzi tub. Separate shower with heated floor and double shower heads. Library has built-in shelves and pocket doors.

Port Angeles Real EstateSee the full listing data sheet with photos:   Port Angeles Real Estate for Sale

There are nice homes for sale in the Port Angeles area, and then there are your ultimate custom homes built not by framers who became general contractors, but homes built by artists who love their work and cannot compromise quality if they wanted to.  It’s simply not in their genetic code.

Port Angeles Real Estate Video

Want a preview of this Port Angeles home for sale?   Here’s a little video for your viewing pleasure.

Port Angeles real estate in the current market is one of the best values for your dollar on the entire Olympic Peninsula.

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Sequim Real Estate CommissionsIf you are selling real estate in Sequim or Port Angeles, are you aware of the dramatic changes taking place in real estate brokerage?   The way   real estate is being sold is changing.   Do you know that across the United States traditional full commission brokers are struggling to survive (many are going out of business) and new models with flat rate or discount commissions are springing up everywhere?   Why?   First, consumers are tired of high commissions and second, according to consumers, they are tired of so-called “full service” brokers who are actually “full commission” brokers rather than “full service” brokers.   This is not coming from me, it’s coming from consumers all over the country.

Inman News, a major national real estate news service, has been conducting surveys on the issues of commissions and the evolving nature of the real estate industry.   Real estate professionals and consumers all over the country have been involved in this survey, and here is what they are saying. (The quotes are from the Inman summary.)

  1. The traditional brokerage model ends up costing home sellers too much money because there are too many people involved (selling side broker and his agent, buying side broker and his agent, and assistants, secretaries, etc.).   “Too many parties are involved in the real estate value chain — directly or indirectly earning sales commissions, in some cases disguised in fees. This adds expense to the transaction, discourages sales in a low-inflation housing market and creates confusion for the consumer.”   See Inman Summary.
  2. The effective use of technology (most agents and brokers are not technology savvy) can eliminate massive overhead that translates to lower commissions for consumers.   “Technology adoption allows for agents and brokers to conduct business virtually, and can eliminate the expense of office space. Online home-shopping tools can help consumers narrow the focus of their home searches even before contacting an agent.”
  3. The traditional brokerage model is broken.   I’ve been writing about this for a couple of years now from several perspectives, all of which are focused on the best interests of the consumer, not the Realtor.   “The current broker model is in disrepair and should not be fostered by broker inaction and industry enablers.”
  4. The big brick and mortar real estate brokerage is top heavy and consumers are just not willing to pay for all of that with huge commissions, especially when it all boils down to one professional agent who knows how to sell a home.   Consumers don’t hire a building.   They don’t hire a huge staff.   They hire one agent, and they expect that one agent to market and sell their home effectively.   Technology and the tools available to consumers has reduced the value of large buildings and expensive conference rooms.   “Brokers who run “body” shops — warehousing agents, no matter the skill level, in massive offices — must slim down their agent pools to the best and brightest. This is for survival’s sake. Those brokers who provide true value in their services will have an easy time recruiting quality.”
  5. For a decade top producers around the country have been saying that print advertising is not as effective as it once was to sell houses.   Over 80% of all home buyers start their search on the Internet, and print advertising has gotten ridiculously expensive and less effective at the same time.   Advertising open houses in the newspapers is not effective either.   Open houses don’t sell houses (only 1% to 2% of homes are sold at open houses).   Open houses are lead gathering opportunities for the listing agent, and do not benefit the home seller.   “Wasteful advertising spending also contributes to the cost of the transaction and could be minimized by improved measurement around successful online ad investments. Agents should be encouraged to adopt social media and mobile technologies into their businesses to communicate more instantly and transparently with consumers.”

A logical question for any Sequim or Port Angeles home owner who wants to sell their home would be, “Okay, Chuck, so what are you?   A full commission broker or a discount broker?”   I am a full service broker who does NOT charge a full commission.   I could talk for an hour on this topic.   My business model puts clients at the center of everything, and I use technology more than any other broker in Sequim or Port Angeles, but the big point is I only use the most effective means to market a property.   I don’t waste money or time on ineffective tools just to try to impress clients.   How’s that for blunt and honest?   If you are interested in details, email me, and I’ll be glad to share everything openly and honestly.

Chuck Marunde, J.D.
Broker/Realtor
Sequim & Port Angeles Real Estate, LLC
Real Estate Website:   SequimPortAngeles.com
Real Estate Blog:   SequimRealEstateNews.com

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President ObamaThe real estate market and the economy are in tatters.   I was going to write next that this isn’t front page news, but it still is.   Every day.   And next week on November 4th America elects its next President and Vice-President.   Who will that be and what will it mean for the real estate market and the economy?

Without expressing my personal preference here, I am quite certain the writing is on the wall and next week we will be hearing the title President Obama.   Not to get all political on you, but let’s face it, McCain has run the poorest presidential campaign most of us have seen in our lifetimes.   And to state the obvious, Obama is the darling of the press, although he has less experience than any presidential candidate in U.S. history.   It’s going to be a devastating loss to Republicans, and Democrats are about to take full control of the nation’s agenda not just for two presidential terms, but for an entire generation.   Mark my words Joe Biden.

We have finally reached the tipping point in America, and conservatism lost.   Despite all the passionate talk by conservatives about how they will continue to fight the good fight, and despite Republican strategist Ed Rollins’ claim that “We will be back,” the truth is, in my bold opinion, the nation has finally reached the point of no-return, the tipping point, and we will never go back to what we were.

What does all this mean for the real estate market, the stock market, and the economy?   Nothing and everything.   It means nothing, because despite the debate about what will happen to the stock market and the nation’s health depending upon who wins, the day after every election it is always business as usual.   The stock market does not care who gets elected, at least on the surface.

On the other hand, who is elected means everything in the long term.   Big and small businesses will adjust accordingly, and there are many variables.   Obama and his policies scare the daylight out of businessmen, and behind the scenes there will be much ado about everything.   The real estate business is in such a state of chaos that it probably doesn’t matter what federal policies come down the pike.   It will take a year and a half to two years before there is a semblance of order in the real estate market for sellers.

Meanwhile, it remains a buyer’s market, and the election will not change that.

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Retire in Port Angeles Washington

port_angeles_real_estate_agentPort Angeles, Washington is 15 miles from Sequim, a popular retirement community.   Port Angeles is surrounded by the incredible beauty of the Northern Olympic Peninsula, the Olympic National Park, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

We’re away from the nightmare traffic of the I-5 and I-405 corridors of the Seattle and Tacoma metropolitan areas.   Since Port Angeles is on the northern Olympic Peninsula about a two and a half hour drive from Sea-Tac International Airport, it is a peaceful country setting.   Being on the Peninsula, we get less traffic, because we don’t get people passing through on their way from one place to another.

We have the beautiful Olympic Mountains and the Olympic National Park with old growth trees in a natural and protected environment.   We have the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the Port of Port Angeles, the Port Angeles Boat Marine, and water views galore.

We have more recreational activities than almost anywhere in the country, biking, jogging, hiking, surfing, boating, sky diving, mountain climbing, fishing, golfing, incredible motorcycle roads around the Peninsula, restaurants you won’t forget, and the list goes on.

We have more volunteers in various community activities than I’ve ever seen anywhere I’ve lived.   I was invited as an attorney to talk to a group a while back, and I was introduced to a few people, including a retired rocket scientist (yes, they really exist), a retired CEO of a large California company, a retired Army General, and a wealthy inventor, all of whom were great conversationalist.   That was just one little luncheon.

There are so many activities, groups, and associations for retired people, I won’t take the space here to write about them, but you’ll find everything from gardening to building experimental planes.

Retirees are happy to find land here where they can build their dream homes.   Right now Port Angeles has a large inventory of lots for sale.   Of course, the market has slowed down everywhere, and because a number of developers started their projects here several years ago, buyers now have a great selection of lots available, and at reasonable prices.   There are water view lots, mountain view lots, high bluff water frontage, gated communities, private acreage surrounded by trees, open farmland for sale, ranch property for sale, and let’s face it–this is a buyer’s market.

I am seeing a very significant percentage of our buyers coming from California and Arizona, and all the way from New Jersey and Florida.   Many are professionals who know exactly what they want.   As between Sequim and Port Angeles, the better value for buyers is undoubtedly in Port Angeles.

Port Angeles is a great place to retire.   No doubt about it.   Use my websites and blogs to read more about Sequim and Port Angeles.     See SequimPortAngeles.com.

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Port Angeles Real Estate Buyers

Are buyers of homes and land in Port Angeles on hold?   Are they not buying?   What are they going to do in the months ahead?   I will tell you what I am seeing, although I cannot reveal my sources, because of my “patented” and confidential business secrets that I certainly do not want to share with my competition.   (In this market, I need to sustain every advantage.)

First, the obvious.   Sales have slowed down dramatically, but they have everywhere.   But homes are still selling here, just not as many.   Here is a chart of June Home Sales in Sequim and Port Angeles in each year since 2000:

Second, the not-so-obvious.   Many people who have put their buying decisions on hold are still looking, and they are scouring the market for what they intend to buy when they are ready.   Of course, part of being ready to buy may involve any of several hurdles.   For example, many are waiting for their markets to pick up, so they can sell their homes in California, Arizona, Oregon, Texas, or wherevery they live.   Some are waiting for that magic retirement date, when they plan to move to Sequim or Port Angeles.   For others, there is another trigger, such as a job transfer, and so on.

These buyers are still out there, actively looking at the market, but have simply put their action to purchase on hold for now.   This demand exists, it’s just below the radar.   It is pent-up demand, meaning that when their key event happens (retirement, sale of their home, etc.), they will be making a decision to purchase here, and they will know exactly what they intend to purchase.   I do have hard data for these conclusions, but I need to keep this data confidential.

What I cannot tell you with precision is when this will happen.   But it will happen.

[Source of data:   Olympic Listing Service]

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Sequim Real Estate Blog Major Upgrade

Chuck MarundeThe Sequim Real Estate Blog and Port Angeles Real Estate Blog take a new step today with a major upgrade to our blogging platform, and for one purpose:   so you can find us easier and navigate quickly to precisely what you are looking for.

Chuck Marunde, J.D. is please to announce as Broker/Owner of Sequim and Port Angeles Real estate, LLC, that the company continues to be on the cutting edge of providing the best Internet services to clients and the public.

No one has the massive Internet presence that we have built.   We reach more people, potential buyers, in California, Arizona, Texas, Oregon, Montana, the Seattle area, and all the way to Florida and Massachusetts than any other broker in all of Clallam County.   Period.   This is why buyers find us, and it is also why sellers want to work with us to list their properties for sale. Today’s market is all about connecting with buyers.   That’s what we do.

Chuck can be reached by email at chuckmarunde.com or at his cell phone, (360) 775-5424.   We love what we do, and so do our clients.

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Port Angeles real estate prices are all over the map, including many homes that are overpriced even in this recession.  Many property owners believe that their property is worth more than the true current fair market value. There are serious downside risks for a homeowner if the property is overpriced.  The property may:

  • Not sell, and
  • The Seller may not get the highest possible price.

Port Angeles Real Estate Prices and Overpricing Dangers


Here are some of the dangers to overpricing your home:

  • The home may not appraise high enough for the buyer to get a loan.
  • It will take longer to sell, but not just that, it won’t sell at that price no matter how long it is on the market.
  • The property will have fewer showings, since the home at the higher priced is filtered out of many buyers’ lists.
  • The seller may receive very low offers, and the seller may be offended.
  • The property will help sell other homes, since buyers are astutely comparing prices and homes.
  • The sellers will have a much longer marketing time, which means paying property taxes and mortgage payments.
  • Once an agent sees an overpriced listing, they never forget it was overpriced, and they don’t go back to see if it was reduced.
  • Sellers end up selling for less than what they would sell for if the property was priced correctly in the beginning.
  • A listing that is overpriced often is looked at by the wrong buyers.
  • Sellers look foolish with grossly overpriced listings.

Port Angeles Real Estate Prices – Time is Everything

Home sellers who overprice their homes will find out after months or even two or three years that they have lost a lot of money by overpricing their homes.  Not only have they lost money and paid a lot in maintenance, taxes, and mortgage payments during the time first put it on the market and now, they also have had all the stress during the long listing period.

My recommendation is that you talk with an experienced professional Realtor who will tell you the honest-to-God truth about how all this works and where you need to be with respect to Port Angeles real estate prices.  If you need help, email me at chuckmarunde@gmail.com or call me anytime.

 

Also on this blog see:
Overpricing Your Home Can Be Costly
, and
Port Angeles and Sequim Real Estate Listings

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Port Angeles Real Estate Transactions

Are you buying or selling real estate in Port Angeles or Sequim? If you are, who is your transaction coordinator? A transaction coordinator is extremely important, perhaps one of the most important people in your entire transaction. This is the person who coordinates everything about your transaction from the minute a Purchase and Sale Agreement is signed by buyer and seller. Top producing Realtors have a full time transaction coordinator, and there are some Realtors who do their own, but there is much much more to being a transaction coordinator than just baking a pie (although that would be pretty hard for me).

  1. The Purchase and Sale Agreement must be reviewed for legal sufficiency, with signatures by all parties on the title, and in Washington (because we are a community property state) by all spouses even if not on title.
  2. Initials must be on the bottom of every page of the agreement marked for a signature, and each edit or change must be initialed and dated by all parties.
  3. All attachments must actually be attached, i.e. the legal description, and it must be incorporated by reference (and best if also initialed).
  4. All amendments and addendums must be properly attached and incorporated and signed.
  5. Legal disclosures must be signed and distributed to the proper parties, and certain docs must be acknowledged and returned by key deadlines.
  6. Contingencies and feasibility items must be calendared and handled at the right time.
  7. Third party involvement, such as lenders, inspectors, contractors, escrow and title companies, building departments or other government agencies, must be diplomatically encouraged and monitored to do their job at the right time.
  8. Continuing documentation must be accomplished, which often means waiver docs or extensions or other amendments.
  9. Status of transaction information must be entered into the MLS, and multiple MLS’s for some of us.
  10. Review of all third party documents for compliance with the client’s terms in the agreements, and for timeliness.
  11. A transaction coordinator must be well organized, good with technology, software, database management, composing letters, good with time management, diplomatic with people, good on the telephone, experienced with all legal documents and requirements, and AND MUCH MORE.

Your transaction coordinator does all this. Missing or ignoring one or more of these items could kill your transaction! Seriously. Is your transaction coordinator good? P.S. Don’t assume your real estate agent is good at all these things. Ask. In other words, interview a Realtor before you hire him or her.

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Selling Real Estate in Port Angeles

Legal Documents
Homes and Land

If you are selling a home or land in Port Angeles or in Sequim, getting the right legal documents and disclosures required under the law (and there are many) and drafting clear and unambiguous language is no small challenge.

Legal Requirements Are Complex and There Are Many

You’ll need a good Purchase & Sale Agreement, Contingency Addendums (financing, inspection, etc.), legal descriptions (legally “sufficient”), disclosures required under Federal and State law (lead paint, environmental, Form 17 with brand new requirements effective June 22, 2007 and possibly Form 17C), and you’ll need to handle all the “little” issues that come up between the signed agreement and closing. Any one of these “little” issues can kill the transaction.

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Port Angeles Real Estate & Sequim Market

I compiled this data from the Olympic Multiple Listing Service for the time period July of 1999 through July of 2007. It shows the number of residential properties sold each year in both Sequim and Port Angeles. It’s interesting to see the pattern. Sequim has outsold Port Angeles consistently, and the trend of properties sold in both cities is consistent. Of course, 2005 had the highest number of residential properties sold, and we’ve been seeing a cooling offer period now, which is visible in the 2006 and 2007 bars.

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Buying Real Estate in Washington

A buyer has so many options these days to search for and buy real estate.

  1. Internet, this is the number one search source, 84% of buyers start here.
  2. Magazines (mostly paid advertising in real estate magazines)
  3. Cable TV (and satellite)
  4. Newspapers (and the all classified papers)
  5. Infomercials
  6. Bank & Mortgage Company ads, refinance for zero closing costs
  7. Direct Mail
  8. Free trips to spend a few days at the new resort that is part of the new “ultra complex” offering golf, boating, green space, hunting, hiking, club house, shopping…spend three days viewing your new lifestyle. Watch out here. You could end up paying a hefty premium.
  9. Flat rate realty services
  10. Menu Real estate services, pick how much or how little service you want and advertising after the initial ad that is optional too, and pay first
  11. MLS, searches for FSBO’s, Realtors, Brokers, Auctions
  12. IDX search sites
  13. Vacant land, these are listed
  14. Investment properties, listed in multiple formats
  15. Residential, private sights and multiple formats too.
  16. Commercial, more selective and less public because the audience is not as big.
  17. Buyer’s Agents and then the certified Buyer’s Broker
  18. No money down…the old land contract with a new name, but pay a lot of interest
  19. Rent to own (somebody makes a huge profit here, and it’s not you)
  20. Money back at close to buy furniture or that new car to put in the garage.
  21. The traditional Realtor and brokerage

This is just a few options. I could fill the page with hybrids. With all of this, clearly the rule is caveat emptor, or buyer beware. Just as these many sources give a buyer many more options, a buyer has that many more ways to end up getting conned or paying to much for a property, or even worse, getting in big legal trouble.

Another case for retaining the services of a professional Realtor?

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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
ChuckMarunde@gmail.com

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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