Sequim Real Estate in Sunny Sequim, Washington

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Archive for the ‘Real Estate Documents’ Category

No Building Permit Spells Trouble

No building permit on a home can be trouble. What if you’re looking at a home in the mountains online in the MLS, and the home has no building permit? There are some homes that have been built intentionally “off the grid,” and some of these have no electric, no Internet and no public utilities of any kind. This article addresses how you can know if a home you’re looking at online has no building permit, and if it does and you are still interested, how do you do your due diligence before making an offer.

no building permit

No Building Permit

Here’s the challenge with the MLS online. Far too often listing brokers do not reveal whether a home has no building permit. You would think that is an obvious piece of important information that would always be included, but it seems Realtors in the Sequim and Port Angeles area do not reveal that. The last two homes with no building permit did not mention that important detail in the listing information.

I have learned to recognize key language that many Realtors use to give us clues. If you see these phrases in the property description, you will want to do further research: “off the grid,” “far from other homes,” “in the middle of thousands of forested acres,” “has its own generator and propane,” or “ultimate privacy off the grid.”

Of course, you can always call or text me (360-775-5424), and I will be able to answer the question on any home and whether it has no building permit. It’s not illegal for someone to sell a home with no building permit, but if you ever want to get permits to make any improvements, you must first have an original permit, and if you ever want to sell the home years later, you might have trouble finding a buyer who will buy a home with no building permit.

No Building Permit and Online Research

You can also take the tax parcel number and plug it into this special website, which will show you if the property has building permits, septic approval, and much more: Building Permits

If you are interested in a property “off the grid,” and you want to learn how to get it permitted long after it was built, call me or email me, and I can walk you through the county process to obtain a building permit. It’s not always possible, but if it is there is a way to get it done.

By the way, this link I just gave you above is an excellent link to learn a lot about any property you are looking at. This will be a very useful link when you are researching Sequim real estate. Of course, I will always help you find out if there is no building permit, too.

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Sequim Real Estate Research

If you are buying real estate in Sequim or even selling, there are some powerful Internet resources online that very few people know about.   Today, I give you more incredible resources absolutely free.

If you have a tax parcel number or the street address, you can look at the database of information of the Clallam County Tax Assessor’s office at:

Clallam County Tax Assessor

If you can’t find the tax parcel number and you don’t know the street address, you can do something hardly anyone knows about.   You can pull up the county parcel map at:

Clallam County Parcel Map (You have to figure out how to use this map, zoom in and make sure the settings you check on the right include individual parcels.   Then you will see the last part of the tax parcel number, and you then have to figure out the full tax parcel number and you can input that into the assessor’s site above.   It’s too bad they make it so hard.)

Would you like to look at recorded real estate documents at the Auditor’s office?   Here’s the page:

Clallam County Auditor’s Recorded Documents

You’ll notice that the links that I gave logical names to are actually lengthy html links that are impossible to remember, so may I suggest you bookmark this article for future reference?   Good idea Chuck.

One last useful link is a look at all real estate for sale in Clallam County:

Sequim and Port Angeles MLS

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Understanding Your Settlement Statement

If you’re buying a home, you might appreciate this video on what to expect and how to read your closing statement.   This is a great video on Understanding Your Settlement Statement produced by Legacy Escrow, which is based Everett, Washington.   This same HUD Settlement Statement is used by escrow offices in Sequim and Port Angeles, too.

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Exclusive Buyer's AgentCan a buyer represent himself when he purchases real estate from a FSBO or from a listing agent?   Yes, but there are traps for the unwary, a few documents that are required by law and some documents that can protect you from calamity.

Buying real estate used to be a matter of a few pages signed by the parties and a simple closing in a real estate office.   It’s not so easy anymore.   In the State of Washington here is a short list of the kinds of documents used in a typical real estate transaction.   Each document has its appropriate use and timing, and each document must be the latest revision, and they are revised regularly to comply with new law and new court rulings.

  1. Law of Real Estate Agency Pamphlet
  2. Lead Paint Hazards Pamphlet
  3. Mold, Moisture, and Your Home
  4. Seller Disclosure Statement-Improved Property
  5. Seller Disclosure Statement-Unimproved Property
  6. Multi-Family Purchase and Sale Agr.
  7. Residential Purchase and Sale Agr.
  8. Financing Addendum
  9. Financing Contingency Notice
  10. Buyer’s Sale of Property Contingency Addendum
  11. Payment Terms Addendum
  12. Optional Clauses Addendum
  13. FIRPTA Certificate
  14. For Your Protection: Get a Home Inspection
  15. For Sale By Owner Addendum
  16. Snohomish County “Right to Farm” Discl. St.
  17. Snohomish County “Right to Practice Forestry” Discl. St.
  18. Disclosure of Info. on Lead-Based Paint and Hazards
  19. Identification of Utilities Addendum
  20. King County Addendum
  21. Land and Acreage Addendum
  22. Promissory Note (Fixed Rate of Interest)
  23. San Juan County Tax Addendum
  24. Seller Warranty-No Foreclosure Sale Pending Add.
  25. Island County Addendum
  26. Skagit County “Right to Farm” Disclosure
  27. Buyer’s Pending Sale of Property Contingency
  28. Well Addendum
  29. Septic Addendum
  30. Short Sale Addendum
  31. Title Contingency Addendum
  32. King County Seller’ Notices of OSS
  33. Kitsap County Septic Addendum
  34. King County Buyer’s Declaration of OSS Receipt
  35. Homeowner Insurance Addendum
  36. Island County Noise Disclosure
  37. Pierce County Septic Addendum
  38. Oak Harbor Noise Disclosure
  39. Kittitas County Surface Water Rights Addendum
  40. Extension of Closing Date Addendum
  41. Kittitas County Right To Farm Discl. St.
  42. Snohomish County Smoke Detector Certification
  43. Open Space Addendum
  44. Manufactured Home PSA
  45. Vacant Land Purchase & Sale Agr.
  46. Presale Addendum
  47. Presale Addendum – Optional Clause
  48. Condominium Resale Certificate
  49. Condominium Purchase & Sale Agr.
  50. Condominium New Construction/Conversion Addendum
  51. Earnest Money Promissory Note
  52. Assignment of Buyer’s Interest
  53. Cooperative Apartment Addendum
  54. General Addendum
  55. Inspection Addendum
  56. Inspection Response for Form 35
  57. Escalation Addendum
  58. Feasibility Contingency
  59. Neighborhood Review Contingency
  60. Pre-Inspection Agreement
  61. Counter-Offer (Addendum)
  62. Withdrawal of Offer or Counteroffer
  63. King County On-Site Sewage System Discl.
  64. Back-Up Addendum to Purchase & Sale Agreement
  65. Notice to Back-Up Buyer that First Sale has Failed
  66. Second Buyer’s Addendum
  67. Commission Disbursement Form
  68. Buyer’s Agency Agreement
  69. Buyer’s Agreement No Agency
  70. Selling Broker’s Commission
  71. Agency Disclosure
  72. Reservation Agreement
  73. Notice to Remove Contingency (“Bump Notice”)
  74. Notice from Contingent Buyer to Seller (“Bump Reply”)
  75. Authorization to Disburse Earnest Money
  76. Rescission of Purchase and Sale Agreement
  77. Conditional Release of Listing
  78. Rental Agr. (Occupancy Prior to Closing)
  79. Rental Agreement (After Closing)
  80. Lease/Rental Agreement (Residential)
  81. Move-In/Move-Out Inspection Agr.
  82. Pet Agreement
  83. Option to Buy Real Estate
  84. Homeowner’s Policy of Title Insurance
  85. Receipt for Earnest Money
  86. Blank Notice
  87. Notice of Rescission of Agreement Pursuant to Form 17
  88. Notice of Termination of Agreement for Failure to Pay Earnest Money
  89. Failure to Close-Notice of Termination by Buyer
  90. Failure to Close-Notice of Termination by Seller-Seller Keep Earn. Money
  91. Failure to Close-Notice of Termination by Seller-Seller to Elect Remedies
  92. Buyer’s Notice of Waiver of Financing Contingency
  93. Buyer’s Notice of Termination (Financing Unavailable)
  94. Buyer’s Notice of appraisal Less Than Purchase Price-Termination
  95. Seller’s Notice of Consent-Second Contingent Sale
  96. Seller’s Notice of Consent-Delayed Closing
  97. Notice of Termination Pursuant to Neighborhood Review (Form 35)
  98. Notice of Termination (Disapproval of Park Rules and Regs-Form 23)
  99. Notice of Termination-(Unable to Assume Lease – Form 23)
  100. Notice of Termination (Feasibility Contingency Disapproval-Form 25)
  101. Notice of Termination (Public Offering Statement Disapproved-Form 28)
  102. Notice of Termination (Resale Certificate Unacceptable-Form 28)
  103. Seller’s Notice that Title Commitment is Available
  104. Buyer’s Notice of Termination (Homeowner Insurance is Unavailable)
  105. Buyer’s Pending Sale Contingency Notice

I have always been a strong advocate of using a professional, in every profession, but here it is especially important that a buyer know when and how to use these documents.   And drafting unambiguous language in each of these primary documents and addendums is critical to avoid disputes and even a transaction that fails because of poor drafting.

More than ever, buyers are wise to use exclusive buyer’s agents to represent them.   When I represent a buyer, I cost them nothing, because the seller pays my commission.   There is absolutely no conflict of interest, because I don’t worry about getting my buyer the lowest price while trying to get my seller the highest price at the same time!

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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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Chuck Marunde Text or Call 360-775-5424