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Sequim Lots for Sale: Buying Checklist

Buying vacant property among all the Sequim lots for sale is a little like having a new home built. There are so many Traps for the Unwary, so many things that can go wrong. Someone who hasn’t been in a real estate nightmare may think, “Oh, it won’t happen to me.” Maybe not, but that is like saying, “Oh, I won’t have a car accident.” Bad things do happen to good people.  But looking at Sequim lots for sale and finding the perfect lot for your retirement home should be, and can be an exciting experience in this next phase of your life.

Sequim Lots for Sale

Sequim Lots for Sale

Sequim Lots for Sale

Buying vacant land that hasn’t been developed by a professional developer/builder, requires many things. Of course, it makes a difference whether you’re buying one 5 acre parcel or 20 acres that need to be divided. Want to see my checklist of issues a developer is obligated to consider?  This is not a checklist you necessarily need to use when buying an individual lot that is in an approved subdivision, but the developer must use a checklist like this.  This list gives you an idea of how much is involved in developing Sequim lots for sale.

Sequim Lots for Sale MLS Search

You can search for Sequim lots for sale by using my http://www.SearchSequimMLS.com website.  In this market we have more lots for sale at lower prices than we have seen in the inventory of Sequim lots for sale for many years.

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  • Filed under: Buying Land
  • Pricing Your Home To Sell

    Many people guess what their home is worth and put it on the market, hoping it will sell for that. I actually had clients who told me how they came up with the selling price on their house. It was the listed price of the new house they wanted to buy in another state. Interesting. Of course, I politely explained that the price of the new home had no relationship whatsoever with the fair market value of the current home. Try and tell a Buyer you want $50,000 over fair market value, because you’ll need it to buy your new house. These clients just had not thought this through.

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  • Best Port Angele Links

    I’ve assembled what I think is the best links for Port Angeles. At least this is a great place to start for nearly anything you want to know or find in P.A.

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  • Filed under: Port Angeles
  • Restrictive Covenants

    Beware Restrictive Covenants.  Buying real estate (both land and homes) is full of Traps for the Unwary, and one of those traps includes covenants, also known as CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions, & Restrictions).

    Restrictive Covenants

    If you purchase property and have no idea what the restrictive covenants are, you could be in a world of hurt later. When you purchase real estate, the most important documents is the Statutory Warranty Deed, and the second most important document would be the restrictive covenants.  The restrictive covenants define the restrictions effecting your property, and the penalties if you violate those restrictions.

    For example, you may be restricted to a stick built home, residential use only (no businesses), no more than two cars parked along your curbside, no garbage cans permitted on the road except on garbage day, no more than two household pets, a height limitation on fences, height restrictions of a house roof line, and so on. You don’t want to purchase property, build a home, bring in your beautiful motor home, only to find out you can’t park a motor home outside your house.

    Some restrictive covenants are very specific.

    You may be required to keep the grass mowed no longer than seven inches, and there may be restrictions on the types of trees you can plant. There may be minimum maintenance standards for your landscaping and home exterior.

    Now, here is where it most often gets sticky. This is where the vast majority of disputes fester within an Association. This is the black hole into which most of the Association legal fees disappear.

    Restrictive Covenants Give Power & Take Power

    restrictive covenantsRestrictive covenants authorize the creation of a Homeowners’ Association, and once the Association is organized (and typically incorporated), a Board of Directors is appointed, and the Board then creates a set of Bylaws, which govern the rules and procedures of the entire Association. The Board decides how much assessments should be for the association. Assessments are like property taxes. You pay them or a lien can be filed and foreclosed. The Board can make assessments for whatever they deem appropriate within the subdivision.

    The Board answers to the homeowners, but that’s a little like saying the President answers to the people, or your Congressman answers to the state citizens. Okay, it’s not exactly the same, because there are fewer voters in your association, and so each one has more power. Still, I can testify under oath after 20 years of real estate law practice that this is an area fraught with conflict.

    I’ve included another section on Homeowners’ Associations, and that section includes much more on Boards, case law, and facts to show you what you should know before you buy into a neighborhood.

    Conclusion. Before you buy property, know what the restrictive covenants say, and find out about how the Homeowners’ Association operates. Is everything running smoothly. Is there a good set of documents from the restrictive covenants to the Articles of Incorporation to the Bylaws, and does the Board operate smoothly with good leadership?

    Many people have had to retain attorneys and spend thousands of dollars on attorney’s fees in disputes about their rights and obligations under the restrictive covenants and the Bylaws. Assessments are usually the issue.

    This would be one of the best reasons to make sure your Realtor is a knowledgeable and experienced agent. I realize this sounds like I’m trying to sell my services as a Realtor to you. I am, but don’t you think I’m working awful hard to do that? Even if you don’t hire me, I’m still giving you value. Whatever you decide to do, the information I have given you here and in the links above, will keep you in good company, out of trouble and help you enjoy your new home. What’s better than peace in the neighborhood? How much is peace of mind worth?

    Know your restrictive covenants.

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  • Filed under: Covenants
  • California RE Market Impacts Sequim/P.A. RE

    Question: How do I know what the California real estate market is doing?

    Answer: By simply looking at the strength or weakness of the market here. If house and land sales have slowed here, it has slowed first in California. If we experience a substantial pause in the market or a slow down, the California market is at a stand still. If California homeowners can’t sell their homes, we will only have roughly half our quota of buyers in Sequim and Port Angeles. We are seeing a slowing in the market here. It’s not so easy to sell your home. Every broker and homeowner in California I’ve talked with recently says their market has screeched to a halt. No doubt.

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    Buying a Fence Line Problem

    Fence line problems are not uncommon.  In the Sequim and Port Angeles areas there are a lot of old fences, especially barbed wire fences left over from over a hundred years of grazing cattle and farming.  Fence line disputes come up periodically, because many of the old surveys were not accurate.  I’m surprised at how often fence lines are off by two feet, 7 feet or even 15 feet on larger parcels.  But a fence line problem can arise even on a small lot in the city.

    Fence Line Disputes

    Fence Line Problems

    Question: I purchased a 5 acre parcel in Clallam County, but just found out (after closing) that the neighbor’s fence line (a 1947 barbed wire fence) is about 7 feet on my property at one end and about 2 feet at the other end. What can I do?

    Fence LineAnswer: Buying property in an area that developed from agricultural or dairy farms, such as the Sequim and Port Angeles areas, means fence lines are not always the true survey line. But that isn’t obvious when you’re buying property, unless you have a survey (prior to closing and with the right language in the addendum, etc.).

    The best solution is to work it out with the neighbor. Move the fence at your cost, if your neighbor is agreeable. If not, you might find yourself just leaving it where it is, unless you can’t for various reasons. If you cannot work out any solution with your neighbor, and you don’t want to leave the fence where it is, the legal cause of action is called a “Quiet Title Action.” That is expensive and stressful. Honestly, having been a lawyer and now a Realtor, this comes up more than most people think.  It can be a stressful and expensive crisis, one most people could do without.

    Fence Line Issues

    I recommend knowing where your boundary lines are and whether any fences are the true boundary line or on or off your property.  When you buy property, especially a large parcel that has been part of a larger farm or agricultural area, I recommend working with an experienced buyer’s agent, and I hope that buyer’s agent will be me.  Fence line disputes are no fun.

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    Olympic National Park Hiking

    I’ve got to say one of the most enjoyable activities on the Olympic Peninsula is hiking in the Olympic National Park. It’s absolutely beautiful. Here’s a pic I took hiking above Sol duc Hot Springs.

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    The Neighbor From Hell

    Among real estate lawyers there is a phrase that sums up much about a case, “the neighbor from hell.” Unfortunately, there are more of these folks than people may realize. True story. My client’s neighbor put a giant concrete speed bump in the shared driveway but just past the neighbor’s turn off. When my client had it removed, because it did $900 damage to his car bottom, the neighbor began putting large stones in the driveway, then paint in the water puddles after the rain, and also stood in the middle of the driveway blocking my client’s exit. Amazing, isn’t it? Just amazing!

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    Sequim Links for Everything

    I’ve assembled what I think is the most comprehensive list of USEFUL key links for Sequim. If you want to know anything about Sequim, here is the place to start. Sequim Links

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  • Business Succession Plan

    There are several thousand business owners in the Port Angeles and Sequim area. How many of these owners have a succession plan for their business? In other words, how many have business planning with an exit strategy and the business equivalent of estate planning? Statistically, 70% of Americans have no estate planning at all. My guess is that 70% of business owners have no business succession plan. So if you are a business owner and your partner dies, maybe your partner’s widow will become your new partner. Hmmm. Scary thought? There are worse things. I think.

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    Listing Price

    Listing Price.  This is a true story about the listing price of a home for sale in Sequim. A nice gentleman tells me that he is really really frustrated with his real estate agent. I played along and said, “Why?” So he tells me this long story about how he had wanted to sell his house, and he talked to a few agents.

    Listing Price and Throw The Dice

    Listed PriceTwo of the agents showed him comps (comparables) that showed a price in the range of $350,000 to $395,000. One was suggesting a listing price of $385,000 and the other was suggesting a listing price of $375,000. But . . . this nice gentleman was persuaded by a third agent that his house would sell for at least $435,000, so he listed with the third agent. Six months later still without a sale, the agent persuades him to reduce the listing price to $399,000. Long story short, the house ends up selling after 11 months on the market for about $370,00, which included some credits the seller ended up giving the buyer.

    Listing Price and Choose Carefully

    I would say the moral of this story is IF AND WHEN YOU HIRE A REAL ESTATE AGENT, MAKE SURE HE/SHE DOES NOT THINK THE LISTING PROCESS IS A BIDDING PROCESS. DO NOT BE FOOLED BY SOMEONE WHO WILL LIST YOUR PROPERTY AT A HIGH PRICE TO GET THE LISTING, AND THEN EVENTUALLY WORK YOU DOWN IN PRICE.

    The most important decision a home seller will make is who he hires as his/her Realtor.  The second most important decision is the listing price.

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  • Easements

    One of the top 10 real estate traps for the unwary when buying real estate (from my experience as a real estate lawyer and now Realtor) is the issue of easements, including driveway easements, access easements, view easements, well maintenance easements, and utility easements.

    Easements are Everywhere

    EasementsIn Clallam County, we have a lot of farm land that was chopped up and developed over the years, and surveys are often inaccurate, but more importantly, people often don’t know where the real easements are. Adverse possession and easement by prescription are real issues here. Know what you are buying! This is a pretty serious reason to hire a Realtor who is knowledgeable and experienced about legal issues. Hint hint.

    Easements – Views

    In the Sequim and Port Angeles areas, view easements are important since so many homes have beautiful water views and views of the Olympic Mountains. Here is a brief explanation of view easements I recorded:

    Easements Effect Property

    When you buy property, you will receive a preliminary title report.  This report will reference easements that are of record, meaning it will disclose all easements that are recoded in the county Auditor’s office.  But some easements may not be recorded, and those are the ones that could create a problem.

    I recommend using a professional buyer’s agent when you buy a home or land.  But your agent should also have substantive real estate knowledge, so he or she will be able to advise you on what I call “traps for the unwary.”  I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating here.  Don’t just hire any Tom, Dick, or Jane who happens to have a real estate license.  Hire a buyer’s agent who actually has knowledge and experience.  Believe it or not, many buyers don’t make any distinction, and with several hundred thousand dollars of your hard earned money at risk, it makes sense to be careful.  Right?

    I am a Sequim Buyer’s Agent as well as a Port Angeles Buyer’s Agent, and you can always reach me at 360-775-5424 or simply email me at chuckmarunde@gmail.com.

    Easements effect the use of your property, so be sure you know all about the easements around and across your land before you buy.

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    Sequim Blogger

    It occurred to me that you might want to know who your host is. Of course, you would see my posts and could figure that out, but here it is in plain English. I am Chuck Marunde, retired real estate attorney and now Real Estate Consultant and Realtor working on properties in the Sequim and Port Angeles areas. You can learn more about me and my professional background, if you are so inclined, by going to FreeRealEstateLaw.com. I hope you find this Blog useful and fun.

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  • Sequim Weather v. Alaska

    Having grown up in Alaska, and now living in Washington since 1980, I often find myself comparing the weather. My folks still live in Tok, Alaska next to the towering Alaska range mountains. Alaska is beautiful, as it is here in Sequim and Port Angeles. I’m thankful the winters are not as cold. I recall temperatures as cold as -78 degrees Fahrenheit. Today it is a beautiful sunny day in Port Angeles and 84 degrees. It’s 50 degrees in Tok, Alaska.

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    Olympic National Park Hiking

    One of the reasons I love living on the Olympic Peninsula is the beautiful outdoors, the mountains, the ocean, the rivers. Jogging, bicycling, and hiking in the Olympic National Park is incredible. You can hike a few miles into the mountains, soak in one of seven natural hot springs, and hike further up into the mountains, and there are places to pitch a tent.

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    Is Title Insurance Necessary?

    Title insurance is a wise purchase.  Truth is stranger than fiction. Imagine purchasing a beautiful piece of real estate intended to be your retirement property and getting stuck with a judgment which was not on the record when you bought your property. It happened to Helmuth and Beverley Prochaska in Whatcom County, Washington.

    Title Insurance Necessary?

    This article reviews the recent Washington Appellate case of Prochaska v. Midwest Title Guaranty Co., 85 Wn. App. 256 (March, 1997).  You’ll see the importance of title insurance.

    Title InsuranceThe Prochaskas moved here from South Carolina. They went through the normal and cautious procedures to purchase their dream property: they included financing contingencies in the Purchase & Sale Agreement, and they obtained and paid for a title insurance policy. The purpose of the title insurance policy, of course, was to insure that they would get a clean title, free from encumbrances of any kind. They did everything you would do in a normal transaction.

    Title Insurance and Real Estate

    Disaster strikes! Nine (9) minutes before the title company recorded the Prochaska’s statutory warranty deed, an out-of-state judgment against the seller of the property was recorded with the Whatcom County Superior Court clerk. Two days later the Superior Court clerk entered the judgment on the official court records (also known as the execution docket). So the judgment was not actually discoverable by anyone who searched the public records until two days after the Prochaska’s deed was recorded.

    To be sure there is no misunderstanding, I want to state the dates and the times. The out-of-state judgment (against the seller) was filed on September 14, 1988, at exactly 10:05 a.m., and the Prochaska’s statutory warranty deed was recorded on September 14, 1988, at exactly 10:14 a.m. Recall that the judgment did not get recorded on the records by the clerk until September 16, 1988.  Was there title insurance?

    Most of us would conclude that the Prochaskas own the property and are ahead of the judgment, or to say it another way, the judgment did not attach to the Prochaska’s property since the judgment against the seller came after the closing and recording to the Prochaskas.

    Not so, says the Washington Appellate Court. Listen up, because this decision is a title company’s worst nightmare, and it could also create a problem for a buyer. It deals with an age old problem for title companies, but the court inks what one would only hope could not be.

    The court bases its ruling on technical interpretations of the law and this has everything to do with title insurance.  As many of us know, judges can give us some incredible law this way. The court hangs its hat on the fact that RCW 4.56.200 establishes that a judgment becomes a lien on real property upon filing with the county clerk. Apparently, it is so what if the clerk doesn’t get the judgment entered in the public record for a couple of days later. The court goes on to say that the Prochaskas had constructive notice when the judgment was filed, even though there was no possibility they could have discovered it until September 16th.

    Concluding, the court says that the out-of-state judgment is a lien on the property (a $100,000 lien), and the Prochaskas are stuck with it. The court politely says that the Prochaska’s remedy is to go after the seller or the insuring title company on the protection afforded in the title insurance. Guess who is going to get stuck with the bill? Right! The title company, because as in most cases, the seller is like the turnip from which you can get no blood. By the way, the title company did a good job closing this transaction, and there was nothing the title company could have done to prevent this whole scenario.

    Title Insurance is Cheap

    Now, does anyone want to complain about the small premium you pay your title company for taking huge risks? Not me. In my opinion, the title companies do not charge enough to close and insure your title.  Title insurance is a bargain.

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  • Divorce and Real Estate

    Divorce and Real EstateOne of the big issues in modern America is divorce and real estate. I’ve had several clients who are selling their property, or wanting to sell it, and their wives announced that they want a divorce. In one case, they had already signed a purchase and sale agreement, and the husband was asking, “Can my wife kill the deal.”

    Divorce and Real Estate

    The simple answer is no. Assuming she signed the agreement to sell, if she refuses to sign the closing documents, she would be in breach, and the buyers could sue for specific performance. That could cost everyone a lot of attorney’s fees. It can be a nightmare scenario.  Of course, divorce can cause devastating financial consequences, not to mention broken hearts.

    Divorce and Real Estate

    When it comes to divorce and real estate, there are many traps for the unwary.  The legal issues should be handled proactively, and that probably means you need to talk to a sharp attorney who understands how to protect you.  But there is a major reason to handle the legal issues proactively, and it is not a legal issue.

    Divorce and Real Estate

    You may know what the biggest trap is . . . if you have been through a divorce yourself.  You think you know someone.  You may have been married 23 years and sacrificed much of your life for your spouse and your children.  You were loyal and always faithful.  But one day your spouse starts saying things that don’t make sense and seems to become a different person–angry and demanding and wanting a completely different life.

    Some spouses, not all, will become vicious and hire a junk yard dog attorney to take you for everything you have.  This is the kind of dysfunctional spouse that also may seek to destroy you, although that is unbelievably mean and cruel beyond words.  But many have gone through this kind of experience.  It’s sad, and the spouse who goes off the deep end doesn’t seem to care that he/she is breaking their childrens’ hearts and imploding the entire family.

    Handling the sale of real estate and actually getting the net proceeds voluntarily released by a bitter and unhappy spouse is no small victory.  Hire a good attorney.  Having your heart broken is bad enough, but not protecting yourself financially will have consequences for many years.  Divorce and real estate is one of life’s touchy and difficult challenges.

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    Quit Claim Deed Disaster

    I’ve had so many clients who made the mistake of doing their own Quit Claim Deed on their real estate.  They owned a vacant piece of property, and thought they would save attorney’s fees and accomplish their own estate planning by avoiding probate with a Quit Claim Deed signing the property to their two boys.  They signed it and recorded it.  Three years later, I get a call from this kind gentleman who is now wanting to sell the lot, because their plans have changed.  He is told by someone now that he cannot have his minor children sign a deed back to himself.  He asked me what he could do to sell his property.  I explained that it wasn’t his property any more, at least not since he deeded it to this children.  His children could not legally sign it back to him without a court appointed guardian, so he would have to hire an attorney to do a guardianship.  That could easily cost several thousand dollars before the dust settles.  That’s one example of how not to use Quit Claim Deeds.

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    Alaska v. Sequim

    I grew up in Tok, Alaska. It was great. Hunting, fishing, great wild country. Incredible mountains. Cold. I moved my family to Sequim in 1994 from Los Vegas, where I was a JAG in the USAF. Sequim is a great place to raise a family. My children thrived in the safe and healthy environment, and my boys participated in athletic events of all kinds at Sequim H.S. You may know my oldest son, who lives in Sequim, Jesse Marunde, who is a professional strongman. My other sons, Bristol, and Brady, live in Renton. I love Sequim and Port Angeles. I’m retired as a real estate attorney and now practice as an Associate Real Estate Broker. If you don’t live here, you should!

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    Internet Listings

    Kijiji is a site you may not have heard about before – it’s online marketplace eBay’s community based classifieds service. The site has been operating in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, China, Japan, and Taiwan since February 2005, and has now just launched in the US.

    Much like craigslist, it aims to help people post and find advertisements in a number of categories including automobiles, jobs, personals, and, of course, housing.

    For Realtors looking to market their listings online, Kijiji (whose name means “village” in Swahili) is just another option in a growing number of Web 2.0 sites looking to aggregate real estate listings; Google Base, Yahoo! Classifieds, Microsoft’s Live Expo, Edgeio (see Edgeio on InmanTV) to name just a few.

    Jay Thompson, a Realtor who blogs at the The Phoenix Real Estate Guy, has given it a try and calls it “a snap”.

    Keeping track of all these options can be overwhelming however. Web services like vFlyer and Postlets help agents by syndicating their listings to all of the sites in one shot and if you need some help sorting through all the options, read this post Craigslist Alternatives Compared from the site Mashable.com.

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    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
    435 W. Bell St. Suite A, 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
    Sequim Real Estate Q&A

    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