Sequim Real Estate in Sunny Sequim, Washington

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Archive for the ‘Water Issues’ Category

Sequim irrigation districts are privately owned associations of property owners who share the cost and maintenance of a local irrigation network for their neighborhood. There are seven in the Sequim area, including the Cline Irrigation District, the Dungeness Irrigation Group, Clallam Ditch Company, Dungeness Irrigation District, Sequim Prairie Tri-Irrigation Association, Agnew Irrigation District, and Highland Irrigation District. Here is a map you can use to identify which district your property would be in. Of course, just because your property is within a Sequim irrigation district does not mean you have water rights. A small percentage of property owners have water rights, and they don’t add properties. It exists or it does not.

Sequim Irrigation Map

Sequim Irrigation Districts

Sequim Irrigation Rights

You can see on this map the boundaries of the Sequim irrigation districts as well as the location of the open ditches and the buried pipe. The question comes up often, “How do I confirm that I have the right to use the irrigation water in my district?” The answer is found by calling the district secretary and asking her to look up the records on your property. The secretary will have a file showing that your property does or does not have the right to use the Sequim irrigation water.

If the property you want to buy is already connected to a Sequim irrigation district and has been using the water, that’s a pretty big clue that your property has the rights, and if the prior owner is current on the dues to the district (now paid through the Clallam County Tax Assessor’s office and shown on the public website), you know you have the water rights. (more…)

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Private Well Testing

    Private well testing is an important subject if you are buying land with a private well. You are not required to do any private well testing, but as part of your due diligence, you most likely will want to. Here I’ll explain what is involved and how you can do this. 

    Private Well Testing

    Private Well Testing

    We’re very lucky in the Sequim WA area that we have some of the purest water in the world. We’re two hours west of Seattle on the pristine Olympic Peninsula far from industrial pollution and far from huge housing developments, and the related commercial activities. Even though nearly all of us could say our private wells are so pure they need no filters or purifiers, I would still recommend that you do your due diligence and have private well testing done to be certain you will be drinking pure healthy water. (more…)

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    Sequim Community Water Systems

    There are many Sequim community water systems, and sometimes it’s nice to be able to find out all about the community well and the water system yourself without having to ask half a dozen people how to find out and wait for return emails or phone calls to get partial answers. In this video I will show you an online resource in Washington State that allows you to look up all the information on any community well system in the State. If you’re going to buy a home or land on one of the Sequim community water systems, this might be a lifesaver for you as you do your research.

    Sequim Community Water Systems

    In the video I share the link to the state website where you can find these Sequim Community Water Systems, but I’ve included the link in this sentence for your convenience. It’s one of those government URLs that no one can possibly memorize.

    I hope you find this information helpful as you do online research on Sequim community water systems.

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    Sequim Water Management Rule

    The Sequim Water Management Rule, aka the Dungeness Water Rule, was adopted by the Washington Department of Ecology in 2013 to manage surface and groundwater within the Dungeness Watershed, which effects about 3,600 property owners around Sequim. The basic idea is to attempt to manage drinking water and to protect fish, wildlife, and other natural resources.

    Sequim Water Management Rule

    Sequim Water Management Rule

    The Sequim Water Management Rule requires mitigation for any new groundwater withdrawals. In other words, any new water use within the geographic area governed by the rule that is not an allowed private well use, will require the equivalent of what some are calling a tax. Under the rule is it called a mitigation fee.

    To implement the Sequim Water Management Rule, the State of Washington works with a non-profit organization called the Washington Water Trust, which administers the water certificates for people who are required to mitigate their water use.

    The Sequim Water Management Rule Litigation

    A lawsuit has been filed against the Department of Ecology to litigate the validity of the Sequim Water Management Rule (technically the Dungeness Water Rule). The trial is scheduled for October 21, 2016 in Thurston County Superior Court. The facts and the legal arguments are so complex, there is virtually no possibility I can summarize them here, and I was a real estate attorney for 20 years.

    You can learn more about the Sequim Water Management Rule at these two sites online:

    1. State Site re Sequim Water Management Rule
    2. Olympic Resource Protection Council

    Read our early explanation of the rule at Sequim Water Management Rule.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • The California Coastal Commission is out of control, and homeowners with beachfront property or bluff property are being told they cannot protect their house with standard small barriers, and those who have barriers (treated wood or rock boulders) are being told they cannot maintain those barriers, even if this means eventually their houses will fall into the ocean. This is an unconstitutional taking of private property, and apparently the case will go to the courts for resolution.

    California Coastal Commission

    California Coastal Commission v. Washington

    In Washington state we have a massive law called the Washington Shoreline Management Act (SMA). It may not be as onerous as the California Coastal Commission, but it does govern what you can and cannot do along any shoreline in Washington. Under the Act each city and each county with shorelines must prepare their own Shoreline Management Plan. Besides multiple jurisdictions, you may deal with more than one agency if you want to do anything along a shoreline. Each agency creates their own Regulations, and a simple matter like protecting your shoreline or bluff can become extremely complicated and even expensive with technical engineering reports required.

    California Coastal Commission Awash

    All this means if you want to do make improvements or maintain your shoreline in Washington, you may be in for a bureaucratic nightmare, although perhaps not as bad as the shorelines subject to the California Coastal Commission.

    Building a path to the beach from your medium high bluff may not be possible. Building your own dock probably is impossible. The last gentlemen I know who built one said it cost him $100,000 in permits and studies and legal fees and many years. He started that process when he was a young man, and now he is old. Maintaining your bluff to protect your property may also be a task of epic proportions.

    Read more about Sequim Bluff Stability.

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    Sequim Water Issues

    Like many areas of the country, Sequim water issues have become more important lately. The drought in California and other southern states has alerted us in the Northwest to the seriousness of the water issues, and with a much smaller snowpack in the Olympic Mountains this past winter, Sequim water issues have come to the forefront. Buyers escaping from the hot dry south are asking, “Will Sequim water issues affect us if we buy a home or property in Sequim, Port Angeles, or Port Townsend?

    Sequim Water Issues

    Sequim Water Issues are Hot

    Today is a very hot day for Sequim at 80 degrees, and it’s been dry. With the 4th of July coming tomorrow, there are some concerns about fires. The Dungeness River is running about a foot below its average, and the county has declared a drought, even though we don’t currently have a water shortage. The declaration appears to be more of a future prediction because of the lower snowpack. Time will tell, but Sequim water issues are discussed more than ever. Of course, a big reason water issues are hot topics in the Northwest is because of the severe drought in California, where many of our buyers are coming from.

    The State of Washington for many years has been working toward greater government control of water useage, a nationwide trend for decades. The Washington Water Management Act was the authority for the creation of a water management area between Sequim and Port Angeles, and daily water use from private wells in this area is now under government control. It is such a complex issue that legislators, their fleet of lawyers, and citizens cannot agree on what is true and what isn’t true about water levels and useage.

    Sequim Water Issues and Shortages

    If you are on a public water system, you don’t have to worry about many of these issues, although you can expect public water rates to increase in the future. If you have a private well, and if you are in the water management area, you should get familiar with restrictions. You can use more water from your private well if you give the government money. It is a water mitigation fee. That’s a polite name for a new kind of tax. If you want to buy some acreage outside the city, you would be very fortunate to find a property that has access to irrigation water, which gives you water for outside watering and animals from May to September. This year irrigation ditches may cut off the flow of water early, perhaps at the end of July or early August.

    I showed properties with acreage to a couple from California yesterday, and they asked about some properties on which the owners have let the fields turn brown, instead of watering. I explained that Sequim water issues are not necessarily the reason. Many allow their grass or fields to turn brown in the hottest months of the year, from July to October. But then I joked about Sequim water issues by saying, “When you see brown grass in Sequim, it is because we are pretending we live in California.”

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Sequim Irrigation Districts

    Do you know about the Sequim irrigation districts? If you plan to buy property in the Sequim area that is located in a Sequim irrigation district, you may want to know which district. Here’s a sweet map of the Sequim irrigation districts and their boundaries with color coded legends that tells you if the irrigation lines are open ditches or pipes. Washington is beginning to regulate the use of residential water, even private wells, and that makes property that has access to irrigation water much more valuable. Only a small percentage of properties in the Sequim and Port Angeles have irrigation water.

    Sequim Irrigation Districts

    Sequim Irrigation Districts in Demand

    Washington has passed a new Water Management Rule, and certain areas on the Olympic Peninsula are covered by the Water Management Rule. Within this area there will be limits on how much water you can pull out of your own well, and the government intends to measure how much water is used on these private wells. Fees will be assessed for people who use more than their allotment. But properties within Sequim irrigation districts have another source of water for five months of the year. Irrigation water typically runs from May through September. If you plan to water plants or fields or an orchard or flowers or animals during those hottest months of the year, irrigation water is a life saver.

    Sequim Irrigation Districts

    Since there are not many properties in Sequim irrigation districts that are for sale, irrigation properties are undoubtedly going to be in greater demand in the future. They already are. I predict that homes in Sequim irrigation districts will soon demand a premium.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Sequim Water Shortages?

    What is the Sequim water situation? Are there Sequim water shortages? In light of the devestating drought in California, are there any concerns about water supplies in the Sequim, Washington area?

    Sequim Water Supplies

    Sequim Water Shortages v. California

    California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a drought emergency recently, and the water shortages are serious. The State Water Project, which halted 2014 deliveries, has never before reduced the allocation of its water to zero in its 54-year history. “It would need to rain and snow heavily every other day from now until May to get us back to average annual rain and snowfall. Even then, California still would be in a drought, because normally wet December and January have been critically dry — and follow a record dry 2013 and a dry 2012,” said Mark Cowin, Director of the California Department of Water Resources. “We are on track for having the worst drought in 500 years,” said Lynn Ingram, a professor of earth and planetary sciences at the University of California at Berkley.

    Sequim Water v. Nevada

    I lived in Nevada for 5 years when I served in the USAF, and since I left in 1994, the water level of Lake Mead behind Hoover Dam has dropped by 100 feet. Nevada, Arizona, and California, which share the Colorado water supply and Lake Mead, are all experiencing devastating water shortages, and the future does not bode well for water sources.

    How is the Sequim water supply? We are very fortunate. We have ample water resources, and the water flowing out of the Olympic Mountains creates an endless supply of underground rivers flowing into the Strait of Juan de Fuca. I’ve been watching well logs in the Sequim area for 20 years, and the well inspections we have today show the water levels in wells the same as the original well logs taken 10 and 20 and 30 years ago. [Washington State has recently begun controlling water in some areas with a massive bureaucracy–see Sequim Water Management Rule.]

    There are many reasons Sequim is such a popular final destination for so many retirees, and our ample Sequim water resources is one of them.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Private Wells

    Private wells are common outside the city limits, and in Clallam County around Sequim and Port Angeles there are thousands of private wells. Perhaps one in 1,000 private wells will pump less than 5 gpm (gallons per minute). That’s not a major problem if the well pumps at least the state and county minimum of 1/2 gpm. At 1/2 gpm a well will produce about 800 gallons of water per day. That’s far more than any family will use.

    Private Wells and Low Production

    Private Wells

    Private Wells and Cisterns

    There is a general notion that a well should produce at least 5 gpm. That general rule comes from past decades when people used their private wells for both indoor and outdoor uses. That included watering the yard, fields, flowers, trees, and animals on mini-farms. Today the state and county differentiate indoor and outdoor water use. The average American family of four uses 350 to 400 gallons of water each day. In Clallam County where there are so many retirees, the average is 158 gallons per day. The new Water Management Rule for properties within the restricted area limits indoor water useage to 150 gallons per day. That allows for some watering outside, like a small yard and a couple of animals.  That means you will need an outside water source if you intend to water a lot of yard, a small orchard, or livestock. A good outside water source would be an irrigation ditch or another natural water source that you are allowed to use.

    Private Wells and Water Rules

    The answer for a well that produced less than a couple of gallons per minute is a 1,000 gallon cistern. A water holding tank is a long established way to store water if you need large quantities that a well cannot produce. For literally thousands of years people around the world have been using water cisterns with private wells. With a well that produces at least 1/2 gallon per minute, and with a 1,000 gallon cistern, you will never run out of water for indoor uses. 

    If you find your ideal home, and it has a low producing well and a 1,000 gallon water cistern, you will still have more water for your indoor use than you could ever use.  Most people don’t know this, and a buyer who has been on a metropolitan public water source might think all private wells must produce five gallons per minute, but now you know that is not true. If you are lucky enough to be one of many who own private wells that produce more, you will just have excess capacity.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Private Wells in Sequim

    Private wells have pros and cons.  When you buy a property in the Sequim area, you will either be on a public water system, a community water system, or your own private well.  

    Private Wells

    Private Wells in Sequim

    If you have your own well, you control it and you know what goes into your water and what does not.  When you buy a home you will most likely want to have the well tested for water volume and quality (bacteria and nitrates).  If there is any indication of microscopic bacteria, you will have the well chlorinated, and that typically solves that problem.

    Community Private Wells

    In some areas on the Olympic Peninsula, two or more properties will share one or more private wells.  That’s fine if the water produces sufficient volume, and provided the parties have a written well maintenance agreement and they all get along.  There are a few subdivisions in the Sequim area that have large community water systems for hundreds of users. Any community well must comply with Washington State Department of Health standards, and must pass an annual test.

    Private Wells vs. Public Water Systems

    Sequim doesn’t have industrial pollution like some major metropolitan areas or industrial areas of the country.  Our source of water comes from the Olympic Mountains, and there is no industrial activity up there at all.  It is some of the purest water in the country.  We are lucky that our private wells are so good.

    Public waters systems are typically chlorinated, but if that is always done, that can be a health hazard, so there are some health benefits to private wells.  In addition, the cost of using your private well is only the electric bill associated with running the pump, and that is a very small bill.  You’ll have maintenance, but even that is rare.  If the pump goes out, you’ll have to replace it, but that is a rare event too.  [Real more about The Safety of Private Wells.]

    I would choose private wells over public water systems any day.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • The Sequim Water Problem

    There is a Sequim water problem as a result of the Water Management Rule, also known as the Dungeness Water Management Rule.  The rule limits the amount of water you can use on your property, and here’s how it creates a Sequim water problem if you are buying land with a private well.

    Sequim Water Problem

    Sequim Water Problem

    Sequim Water Problem Restricts Water Use

    I recently sold a 20 acre parcel where my buyers intend to build a home and have their little Sequim mini-farm.  It’s a beautiful location in the Blue Hole and they have a sweet mountain view, too.  The soil is rich in the Sequim valley in most places, and these clients will have animals, including donkeys.  Since they are outside the Sequim City limits and not on a water trunk line, they will have their own well drilled.  Here’s where the Sequim water problem rears its ugly head.  The state has a rule.  You can only use 150 gallons of water per day from your own well, unless you pay the state a fee.  The average family of four in the U.S. uses between 350 and 400 gallons per day, and apparently in Clallam County the average is 158 gallons per day, because there are so many retirees living here.  Younger families with children will obviously exceed their limit. 

    Sequim Water Problem Restricts Mini-Farms

    If you purchase the water rights to use more than 150 gallons per day, the rule prohibits using that water for farm animals. Apparently you might get away with a couple of animals, but not three or more horses, cows, or donkeys.  The land I sold happens to have an irrigation ditch on the western boundary, so there will be water for the animals, but that water only flows from April 15th to September 15th each year.  That leaves the animals without water for seven months of the year.

    You can find out if a specific parcel of land in the Sequim or Port Angeles area is in the Dungeness Water Management Area by going to this link and typing in the tax parcel number (only use the first 12 digits) and then clicking on the link you will get on the left sideParcel Status.

    Sequim Water Rules

    This is a very real Sequim water problem.  This is killing land sales for some land owners. This new Sequim Water Management Rule has unquestionably reduced the value of land. My guess is that property owners in Clallam County whose land is effected by this rule have lost millions of dollars in sellable value.  Some buyers who want a mini-farm are giving up on finding land here, and moving to other communities.  If you are a retired couple moving to Sequim to build your home and do not plan to raise livestock for commercial purposes or to have a mini-farm with lots of animals, and if you do not plan to have an orchard or the need to water large areas, you will not be effected by this rule.  For buyers and sellers of vacant land or farmland, the Sequim water problem is creating a great deal of chaos.  But do not conclude from this article that having a mini-farm in the Sequim area is not possible, because it is.  I have helped several families recently acquire their family mini-farm inside the Water Management Area. There isn’t room here to discuss all the options that are available.  The Sequim water problem does not have to kill your dream.

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    Dungeness Watershed Management Rule

    The new Dungeness Watershed Management Rule for the Sequim area is in effect, and if you are buying vacant land with plans to drill a well, or if you have plans to increase your past water use, and if you are living within the watershed area, you will have to pay for the new water use.

    Dungeness Watershed Management Rule

    Dungeness Watershed Management Rule

    Dungeness Watershed Management Rule History

    Read this full article on the Dungeness Watershed Management Rule to learn more, and you can view a full size map of the Watershed area and you can read much more on the Clallam County Website.

    Dungeness Watershed Management Rule Issue

    One question that comes up for buyers of vacant land in Sequim is whether the Dungeness Watershed Management Rule applies to a residential well that was already drilled but the home has not been built yet.  The answer is, “If you have not started using the well for your intended purpose before the rule takes effect, your water use is subject to the rule. You do not have an existing right unless you used water from the well for regular beneficial use” prior to January 2, 2013.  

    For more history with an update on the price of water mitigation, see The Sequim Water Rule.  The Dungeness Watershed Management Rule is now in effect.

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    Sequim and Port Angeles have some beautiful lots up high on the hillsides and mountains, which is part of the grand appeal of the area with stunning water views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Sequim Bay, or the International waters between Port Angeles and Victoria, B.C.  We have been blessed by nature to have water and beaches on one side and mountains on the other with the Olympic National Forests.

    With heavy rains and water drainage from the mountains of the rain forests to the sea, it is inevitable that some of our steep hillsides with classy real estate developments would see their share of water drainage issues.  What does this mean for homeowners?


    It means that buyers who don’t do their due diligence, and even some who do, can end up with flooding in the crawl space beneath their home, or excess water flow through and over their property.  Can this kind of mistake be prevented?  Yes, it can, but it all starts with knowing what to look for when buying a home or land in the Sequim or Port Angeles areas.

    Natural water run off is often changed or re-directed in a real estate development to allow for building homes, roads, and landscaping.  Developers must comply with strict regulations, and nature is left in its natural state as much as possible.

    The problem comes when a builder uses gravel fill (often without sufficient compacting) without  effective drainage techniques around the foundation and property.  The other problem that comes up too often is when a neighbor does excavation, landscaping, or drainage work that re-directs water and its drainage so that it causes damage on an adjacent property or properties.  This is legally called water trespass.

    A serious drainage problem that leaves water in a crawl space below one’s home can result in health endangering mold and bacteria.  Of course, if the drainage is bad enough, it could threaten the foundation of the home.

    A good home inspector in Sequim or Port Angeles will immediately recognize signs of excess moisture in a crawl space, and then it is up to you as a buyer to know what to do with that information before you sign off and close.  Some unfortunate homeowners have made the mistake of thinking they could close the purchase and resolve the standing water beneath the house later.  Do not assume anything.  I recommend that you get good counsel when you purchase your home or land.  You’ll be glad you did.

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  • Filed under: Water Issues
  • Wetlands – A Losing Battle

    Saving wetlands is a losing battle! First, one must ask if the environmental fervor to save wetlands is based on real science. Second, if that question can be answered in the affirmative, the next question is, “can we save wetlands?” Third, if both of those questions can be answered in the affirmative, then one must ask, “how can we go about saving wetlands in a way that is cost effective, or is there another tactic in the bigger picture that makes scientific and economic sense in our ecosystem?”

    Let’s face it, there has been little proof that all the laws, rules, and regulations designating and governing wetlands around our nation has been effective. The Seattle Times, certainly a liberal newspaper that zealously promotes wetlands and environmental protection, shed some serious light on what a dismal failure the federal and state and county governments have been in protecting our designated wetlands.

    “Time and again, efforts to re-create nature by replacing wetlands fail, if the effort is made at all. The science is relatively new and evolving, and wetlands replacements are often allowed to be afterthoughts for developers. . . . Even the state’s highest environmental officials concede the system is broken. . . . ‘We are kidding ourselves; the emperor has no clothes,’ said Thomas Hruby, a senior ecologist at the Ecology Department. ‘We are deluding ourselves, hoping there is a silver bullet out there that will allow us to have our growth and not have the impacts. It’s a state of denial.'”

    The cost of protecting wetlands is in the billions nationwide, and the scientific community still cannot agree on the state of our progress, or lack thereof. This cost cannot be calculated, but it hits all of us in two ways.

    First, when privately owned land is designated as wetlands (even when no one can see signs of water, or the hole was dug with a shovel and the hole later has standing water in it), the owners, who are often widows or senior citizens, cannot sell their land for the fair market value it would have in the real estate market for its highest and best use. This cost alone has stolen millions and millions of dollars out of the pockets of hard working middle class Americans.

    Second, the actual cost of protecting wetlands through the extensive and complicated engineering that is required is beyond comprehension for most of us. There are 10’s of thousands of massive wetlands protection projects around the country costing millions of dollars with negligible results.

    The Port of Seattle has already spent $62,000,000 to replace wetlands filled in for a third runway at Sea-Tac. The Army Corps of Engineers scientist said, “the jury is still out” on the success of some of the mitigation. Not to get picky here, but have all you taxpayers signed up for this expense voluntarily?

    The truth is, protecting wetlands with extreme fervor may actually be a black hole for taxpayers. We pay, government spends. What many people find so disturbing is that there is little proof that all our tax dollars are doing anything to save the environment.

    On the beautiful Northern Olympic Peninsula, and in Sunny Sequim, Washington and it’s sister city, Port Angeles, thousands of acres have been designated as wetlands at a tremendous cost to private landowners, and with wheel barrels of tax dollars. Are we really saving the environment? If we held court, and had a civil jury where the burden of proof was the lowest standard, “by a preponderance of the evidence,” I am afraid the case for wetlands protection would be dismissed.

    Courtesy Sequim & Port Angeles Real Estate, LLC

    [Quotes from the Seattle Times, Saving Wetlands: A Broken Promise, May 12, 2008, page A1]

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  • Filed under: Wetlands
  • Search Sequim Blog

    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