Sequim Real Estate in Sunny Sequim, Washington

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Internet Real Estate Search

People everywhere are using the Internet to search for real estate. The National Association of Realtors’ survey indicated 84% of all home buyers start their search on the Internet. Now there is more proof of the growing reliance on the Internet for all things.

Internet usage in the US has reached an estimated 178 million, or 79 percent of the entire adult population, according to a recent survey conducted among 2,062 adults by Harris Interactive over the course of July through October.

Harris first began tracking Internet usage in 1995. Then, only nine percent of the population went online. However, the numbers have been steadily increasing year after year from 57 percent in 2000, 66 percent in 2002, 74 percent in 2005, and 77 percent last year. The amount of time people are spending online has also increased. The average number of hours per week that people are spending online rose to 11 hours, up from 9 hours in 2006 and 8 hours in 2005.

But perhaps most notable was the increase in people who use an alternative location besides work or home to get online, up from 22 percent in 2006 to 31 percent today – which could be, to a certain extent, attributable to the proliferation of web-enabled mobile devices. You can read the rest of the survey results here.

If you are buying or selling real estate, this logically means you would be well advised to connect with a Realtor who has a substantial Internet presence. Right? Here’s what I would look for: Competence, trustworthiness, experience, and a large Internet presence (not just a Static Internet Brochure masquerading as a website). Check out plus this site,, plus plus ActiveRain plus Seattle Post Intelligencer Real Estate Blog plus Ezine Real Estate Articles and more that I chose not to reveal here, because some of my marketing is top secret and not to be revealed to my competition. I’m here to help. Email me. Buying? Selling? Tell me about it. Maybe I can help.

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Sequim Water View Real Estate

Sequim view property is plentiful. As a matter of fact, Port Angeles view property is abundant, too. Where in the U.S. can you find so much view property? And where can you find it (1 to 5 acres) for $200,000 to $300,000? Not in California.

Answer: Right here on the Olympic Peninsula. Granted, the pictures here are actually European castles, and not local mansions. I do have plenty of local photos, if you are far away and would like to see more.

Real estate developments in Sequim and Port Angeles have a surprising number of lots with great views. I’m always careful when someone is asking me long distance about the view, because every view is measured by past personal experience. What one person considers a great view another one considers just a view, and then someone else will go crazy over the view. We are also blessed with some great mountain property and high bluff property also. Disclosure: the photo to the right is not an actual Sequim photo.

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Real Estate Divorce

The Real Story of the Prince and the Princess

Once upon a time there was a young Prince who met a beautiful young maiden in a distant village while riding his Stallion throughout the fiefdom. She was thin and shapely with long hair and soft skin. The prince fell madly in love with her quickly for he mistook high levels of testosterone for love. She feigned poise and confidence, but beneath the pretty surface was a girl of low self-esteem, and quite unbeknownst to the Prince, his beloved was a dysfunctional girl secretly carrying several suitcases of family baggage.

Before they could get married, the Princess-to-be started to get a large stomach, for she had become ripe with child. No one knew until the Princess had her first child, but as the years passed by, their sin faded in the memories of all. The Prince and Princess were the perfect family in the Kingdom with 2.4 children. They had a nice home, an above average carriage, and the Princess always wore the latest French fashions. As the years passed, she forgot about her childhood and her poverty.

The Rest of the Story . . .

Alas, all things were not as they appeared. The Princess filed for divorce one day to the great dismay of the Prince and the entire royal family. Many were shocked, but not all, for the Princess had been telling white lies about the Prince to her friends, brainwashing the servants in the Castle dungeon, and together with her lady friends she started a secret organization forbidden of women in that day. Determined to rise above their high positions, the liberated Princess and her friends decided they were entitled to more. No one in the organization could define “more,” but they all agreed that they were entitled to more, and with that as their motto, they created the National Organization for Princesses and Spousal Units, using the acronym “NOPASS,” but only because no one in the organization could spell.

In accordance with her new theological philosophy, the Princess proceeded to divorce the Prince and sued him for all that he had, including all his real estate holdings, his past and his future. In addition, after petitioning the Royal Court for all that the Prince owned, the Princess also petitioned the Court for Princess Maintenance in the sum of 2.4 chests of gold due in full on or before each full moon.

Becoming impatient with the Royal Court’s wooden wheels of justice, the Princess implemented advice from her Royal Committee of Exhortation and Culinary Secrets. The advise was to file a petition under oath that the Prince had physically attacked the Princess, and to seek his immediate eviction from the Castle with a Royal Order of Restraint. Although the Prince had never raised his hand against the Princess, the Royal Court always assumed such a petition to be true, and the Prince was prematurely evicted from his own Castle.

The Prince sought the protection of the law of the land, but his Esquire told him the best he could hope for was his life and a small cottage in the country. Assuming his lawyer was a genius, the Prince agreed, and the Royal Settlement Decree gave all his real estate to the Princess, except one piece encumbered by a 140% loan from KingdomWide Loan Company. The Princess also got all the Castle furniture and personal possessions, although she agreed to let the Prince have his Royal underwear and all the Kingdom debts.

Between the cash settlement and the lawyers’ fees, the Prince had no Royal funds. He could not afford the Princess Support payments as he had no gold left, and one day the RSHS (Royal Social & Health Services) took his license to drive a carriage, suspended his license to shoe horses, and his only donkey was repossessed and sold at a barn sale to a pauper for 50 cents. The Prince’s troubles grew, because he had no funds to pay past Royal income taxes (gift taxes were due on the debts the Princess had given him), and the Royal Infernal Revenue Service assessed a penalty of 50% for all unpaid taxes, and 12% to accumulate on the unpaid balance until the Prince should win the Royal lottery or die, whichever should occur first.

The ex-Prince had no money, no place to live, and had to take a job cleaning horse stalls in the village. No one believed he had once been a happy Prince. He did not look or smell like a Prince. Without money and without a horse the ex-Prince had no means to travel the many miles to visit his beloved children. The Princess subtly spread the word that the ex-Prince was unfit, that he did not care about his children and that he refused to meet his manly responsibilities to support his family.

Meanwhile, the Princess took her children on a long trip in the golden Royal carriage to Paris and far away places. She ate exotic foods and laughed amidst the entertainment of the jesters. Her children loved her, because she made them feel happy and secure.

In the months that followed the Royal execution and scorging, . . . I mean Royal separation and divorce, the ex-Prince, being sensitive and in touch with his emotions, became sad and was very lonely. The Princess not being one to miss an opportunity, quickly spread a rumor that the ex-Prince had lost his mind and was bipolar. Many sycophants in the Kingdom congratulated the Princess for her wisdom in divorcing the Prince and taking him for all that he had.

The Princess became a very wealthy landowner as real estate values appreciated and as she inherited all the remaining wealth of the Royal family. Everyone worshiped the Princess all the days of her life, because she let them touch her gold and silver, and because she poured sweet words and kisses upon them.

Memory of the ex-Prince faded, and his children grew up thinking of their father as a failure. They did not know what became of him, but believed their mother who told them he had died in an insane asylum.

The ex-Prince grew older and wiser through all his trials. He grew to understand that life is not about things, but relationships. He learned that life is not always just. Wishing to be helpful to others and to leave a legacy, the ex-Prince never mentioned again that he had been a Prince, was sworn into the Priesthood, and became a strong proponent of asset protection and prenuptial agreements. The ex-Prince taught these things at the Monastery, and his seminars became the most popular subjects taught at the monastery in over 1,100 years.

The End

Postscript:  This apparent sad ending to the story is not really the end.  There is a postscript of hope.  For men who can identify with this scenario because they have been divorced and Royally evicted, and find themselves in a phase with feelings of failure while struggling to rebuild a life of productivity and fulfillment, there really is hope.  You may have to clean barns for a time, but you don’t have to end your life in a Monastery.  I can personally testify that I have been through a difficult divorce, and my life as a bachelor is full of success now–emotionally, psychologically, spiritually, and financially.  I have wonderful relationships genuine people.  I have a successful business, have published a book with a second on the way, have written thousands of real estate articles, have built the largest Internet real estate brokerage in my market, am an Internet marketing consultant, and I have a great spiritual life, too.   Life is good, and there is hope for the future for those who might be a few years behind me on this path.  I know what I’m talking about.

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Seller Misrepresentation

The hot topic of the day is the new change in the Purchase and Sale form in Washington and the seller’s disclosure requirements. [Read the previous article explaining the law and issues of negligent misrepresentation] A Realtor asked if the Form 17 Seller’s Disclosure Statement offers any real protection against negligent misrepresentation.

Good question. My thinking is that it offers some, but very little.

When the law was passed back in 1995, I remember saying that it won’t have any effect on whether a seller misrepresents the condition of a property. A person who lies will also lie on the form 17, and a person who tells the truth will not lie on the form 17. But that didn’t change the law governing seller misrepresentation; it only required the seller to complete a formal questionnaire about the property, which supposedly would give the buyer adverse information if there was any. The form 17 also didn’t have any effect on buyer remedies (although that was the intent), whether the suit was against a seller for intentional or unintentional misrepresentation. The same prima facie elements must be proven now in the same way as before the form 17 was required.

So what has changed? Read more to find out.

Here’s what has changed.

The form 17 gave buyers another document to use in court against a seller, even if the seller was totally honest. For example, there’s a question that asks if the septic system is entirely within the property boundaries. Normally an owner would have relied upon a licensed surveyor, if he had a survey done (not required in Washington to buy or sell), and normally an owner would have hired a licensed septic system installer (if he was the one who had the system installed). If the seller answers, “Yes,” and it turns out years after closing that the surveyor screwed up and the septic system is on the adjacent property by six inches, the seller made an unintentional misrepresentation on form 17. In court (or in a deposition or interrogatory), the seller gets nailed by the question, “Did you answer this question ‘Yes,'” and after he responds that he did, the next question, “You know now that the septic system is actually six inches on the neighbor’s property. Right?” Then after the “yes” answer, the killer question, “So your answer on the form 17 was incorrect, right?” The only answer for the seller on the witness stand under oath is, “Yes.” Of course, there is a lot of hemming and hawing by the witness, but ultimately the judge will force him to answer yes or no to all these questions.

A sharp lawyer will want to interject in this discussion that the form 17 is only the seller’s reasonable understanding of the condition of the property, not a guarantee. That’s a good discussion for a law professor in a classroom, but not in the real world where finely tuned legal arguments might get you off the hook. Believe me, in a real trial, the above guy gets nailed to the cross.

So, how would a reasonable seller who does not want to get sued long after closing the sale answer such a question about the septic (and many other issues)? He would have saved himself much stress, attorney’s fees, and perhaps the entire lawsuit if he had simply answered the question with a “don’t know.” Then he could have added a narrative explanation, if he wanted, that explained he did not personally know if the septic system was “entirely” within the boundaries, that he hired experts to do the work, or that he purchased the property as it is, but that he personally has no absolute knowledge of the correctness or incorrectness of the boundary lines, or words to that effect. Of course, in public attorneys cannot and would not advise clients to do anything but tell the truth on the form 17, but in private behind closed doors, they must have a confidential conversation about what telling the truth could do to them. Telling the truth in this current legal environment in Washington could get a person crucified in court, even if they never lied in their entire life and did not lie on the form 17. Remember, it is unintentional and completely innocent misrepresentations that I’m talking about here, and a seller could find himself getting raked over the coals in our injustice system for several years. So in his confidential discussion with his client, the attorney will hint that the seller is well advised to fudge and answer with a safe “don’t know.” No attorney would admit this, but if you were giving a client honest and confidential advise, would you not have a duty to discuss this with the client, and of course, leave it to the client to decide how to answer his form 17?

It’s a bit ironic that the state statute creating the form 17 states that the form 17 is not part of the parties’ contract to purchase the property, yet it is used in trial all the time in misrepresentation cases, and the new purchase and sale agreement incorporates the form 17 into the contract (not with the words “incorporates here” but certainly by reference and creating contract and tort remedies for a buyer against a seller by using the form 17).

It’s always been difficult to prove actual knowledge and the intent of a seller in a misrepresentation case. What the seller did or did not know must be proven, and you really need extrinsic evidence, since you can’t get inside a seller’s head and lay that evidence out at trial. The form 17 was an attempt, feeble though it is, to protect consumers, but it has failed and only created more confusion and litigation.

As with most bad law and good intentions, the only real winners here are the lawyers. I made tens of thousands of dollars myself as a lawyer litigating misrepresentation cases. That reminds me, there is a silver lining in all of this. This latest brouhaha about seller misrepresentation and the new Purchase and Sale Agreement will turn out to be silver for practicing attorneys. On behalf of those attorneys, I would extend a hearty thank you. Attorneys will ponder that eternal question again, “Let’s see, what kind of boat do I want?” ( P.S. I’m really glad I’m retired from law practice.)

If I may offer some sarcastic humor with a rhetorical question, wasn’t it attorneys who created the form 17 statute, and wasn’t it attorneys who decided Alejandre v. Bull, and wasn’t it attorneys who came up with line 9 in the new Purchase and Sale Agreement, and isn’t it attorneys who are going to litigate this issue in the months and years ahead? Hmm. Shakespeare had a humorous solution regarding lawyers, which I’m afraid of quoting here, lest I get sued. Hint: Google this exact clause without the quotes “Shakespeare lawyers” and read to first result, but if you tell anyone you got this hint from me, I’ll deny it under oath.

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Overpricing Your Home Can be Costly

One of my pet peeves is overpriced real estate. An overpriced home on the market can actually cost a seller a lot of money. A home only sells for fair market value (FMV), not more than buyers are willing to pay. That’s what FMV is–what a ready, willing, and able buyer is willing to pay for a home. Yet we still see both FSBO’s and agent listings on the market above FMV, and some are substantially above FMV.

If your home is for sale at a price above FMV, you can end up selling it for even less than FMV down the road. I’ve been preaching this for almost 20 years now, but finally there is authoritative proof. [See my earlier blogs on this: Save $10,000 Buying and Port Angeles and Sequim Overpriced Listings]

The proof is in the Sunday, October 28, 2007 issue of the Seattle Times at page E7:

“Real estate agents often warn sellers about the danger of overpricing a house. Now they have evidence to show skeptical clients: research by Jeffrey Otteau, a New Jersey appraiser. He found that in a market where prices are declining, sellers who ‘test the market’ with a high price usually end up with a lower price than those who price realistically.”

The article points out that a house that is priced right for the current market sells within a reasonable time, but one that is overpriced will sit on the market while the market prices decline, and when the home does finally sell, it sells for less than the FMV of that home when it was first on the market.

The statistical proof showed that in a market where a home that was listed for $599,900 (FMV) and which sold for $599,000 (almost full listed price within 30 days), a comparable house that was overpriced at $634,900 actually sold for $585,000 months later when the market had declined even a little more.

There’s another solid reason not to overprice your home.  When a home first goes into the MLS and is advertised at that price, you have an opportunity to reach a small percentage of buyers who may be interested in your home, can actually afford it, and who are ready to do so now.  An overpriced home may cause them to look elsewhere.  And this is the clincher, buyers rarely come back to look at the same home again even after you’ve reduced the price.  That’s true.  Not only will most buyers not come back to see if you’ve reduced the price in the months to follow, but by the time you actually do reduce the price in the MLS, those original buyers are long gone, most having purchased a home that was not overpriced.  So as a practical matter, you have one shot at each buyer.

Sometimes a seller who wants to gamble by asking far more than his home is worth will say, “I’m in no hurry to sell.  If it doesn’t sell, I can hang on to it until prices go back up.”  If that’s your sentiment, then don’t waste time and effort listing it for sale when you know it won’t sell.  Hoping you will get lucky and find an uninformed buyer who will pay way more for your property than the true FMV is a pipe dream.  Buyers are very intelligent these days, especially with the availability of the powerful tools on the Internet.  If you want more, then don’t list your home until prices actually do appreciate to that level.  Believe me, no one will buy an overpriced home.

This is such an important lesson for homeowners who want to “test the market” with an excessively high price. Don’t do it. You could lose a lot of money by the time you end up selling it for much less in a slower market.

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  • Filed under: Listing Price
  • How Should You Hold Title To Real Estate?

    How you take title to your real estate will have major implications. My recommendation is that you hold title in a way that will avoid probate. It is also good to have asset protection in mind when you buy real estate. I recommend you seek to avoid paying unnecessary taxes, and the method of how title will be transferred should consider capital gains taxes.

    Some of the ways you may hold title to real estate and personal property include:

    1. As husband and wife with the right of survivorship;
    2. As husband and wife as joint tenants (may or may not be with the right of survivorship);
    3. A married person holding title in his/her separate capacity;
    4. As trustee of a trust (revocable or irrevocable);
    5. As a partner in a general or limited partnership (including a family limited partnership;
    6. As a corporation (“C” Corp or “S” Corp);
    7. As a Limited Liability Company;
    8. As an International Business Corporation;
    9. As an off shore trust; and
    10. Other combinations and/or hybrids, some of which actually remove ownership but not benefits (this can be good!).

    How you choose to hold title is a vital part of the process of effectively planning your estate. As you can see, an important part of this process is first determining what you own, how you own it, and what you want to do. Then it takes some wisdom to design an effective plan.

    Your personal estate planning should be consistent with your business planning and business succession plan, if you own your own business. Here’s a quick review of the tools for avoiding probate:

    1. Owning real estate as joint tenants with the right of survivorship;
    2. Having a payable on death account;
    3. Having a named beneficiary in a life insurance policy;
    4. Having a Revocable Living Trust; and
    5. Having another type of trust of the more than two dozen types (read a description of both revocable and irrevocable trusts).

    I write more about asset protection planning in a separate article. Read more about estate planning and how to hold title to your real estate.

    Best regards,
    Chuck Marunde, J.D.
    Retired Atty and Practicing Realtor

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    Is There a Difference Among Professionals?

    I was reminded this week that in every profession, there are those who are competent, those who are mediocre, and those who are simply unprofessional. Think of the Dentists you’ve seen in your life. The really great Dentists make it almost pleasant. Or consider plumbers, contractors, CPA’s, insurance agents, or financial advisers. Some are great, and those are the ones to keep for a lifetime. But . . . this week I had a client who tried to work with a mortgage rep to get their home loan. There are some great mortgage reps out there, but this person was not one of them. No phone calls, no communication, lack of coordination among my clients and me, and ultimately this rep drops my clients with nothing more than, “Can’t do the loan.” No purpose is served here by going into detail, because my main point is this:

    When you need the services of a professional, seek out someone who is really good, and that normally means someone who has knowledge and experience, and it certainly helps if they have a good reputation for 1.) doing good work, and 2.) communicating with their clients.

    I’m a Realtor, and we all know that everyone and their brother has a real estate license. That alone should be a red flag for anyone considering working with a Realtor. Real estate agents are a dime a dozen. Having been in real estate for about 30 years now, I can tell you from personal experience that this profession is like all others. We have the competent, the mediocre, and those who are . . . well, let’s just say not your best choice. This certainly isn’t front page news, right?

    So the next time you are looking for a Realtor, please, for you own sake, do your homework and seek a Realtor who really is competent, trustworthy, experienced, and professional. You’ll be so happy you did.

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    Sequim and Port Angeles Sales 2006-2007

    Click on the Charts to Enlarge

    These two graphics compare total sales of homes in the Sequim and Port Angeles areas (excluding new construction) in the first nine months of 2007 and 2006 (below). It’s an interesting comparison in light of all the doom and gloom talk about the real estate market. We are down, but not by alarming proportions. The total number of houses sold in the first nine months of 2006 was 758, and in 2007 it was 697. That’s a decline of only eight percent (8%). This does not include new construction, which we will look at later.

    Click on the Charts to Enlarge

    Buyers are still buying, and this is good news for sellers. The key is pricing your home right. Overpriced listings will get stale in this market, while the house down the street sells within 60 to 90 days. If a house is overpriced, the window of opportunity with those who would have made an offer is closed. Those buyers are probably gone forever. Only the houses that are priced right are included in the above chart statistics.

    Data Used by Permission, Real Market Data, LLC

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    Sellers Can Carry the Contract

    Thirty and forty years ago it was not uncommon for a seller to finance his buyer, in other words for a seller to carry the note for the buyer. In fact, many of those contracts were still being created 20 years ago, but with a mortgage market that became intensely competitive and focused upon getting everyone possible into a home, seller contracts faded.

    Seller contracts in Sequim and Port Angeles faded for two specific reasons. First, buyers could find lower interest rates and higher loan to value ratios than sellers could reasonably offer for the risk. Second, sellers were favored by IRS treatment, which has reduced the capital gains tax threat for anyone selling their own home.

    For a retired person who wants to sell their own home (and especially a rental or investment property), it might be a great time to consider financing the buyer.

    In Washington there are two ways to carry the contract for a buyer:

    1. A Deed of Trust and a Promissory Note (see the deed of trust foreclosure process); or
    2. A Real Estate Contract, aka Land Contract (see the real estate contract forfeiture process).

    Provided the seller still does his due diligence on the buyer (credit report, job history, references), and provided the seller gets a reasonable down payment, a seller can get a higher interest rate than a mortgage broker. The higher interest rate is justified, because it is a private contract and the seller bears the risk of default and foreclosure (or forfeiture in the case of a real estate contract).

    The risks can be quite acceptable, because the seller is well secured by the real estate itself. If the seller has to foreclose, he probably makes even more money, since he keeps the down payment, all the monthly payments, and then re-sells the house at what may be an even higher price (or at least the same price). Of course, there may be some repairs required after a foreclosure, but it can still be lucrative, and in a market that has slowed down, this could be the key to selling the house now!

    Of course, if the seller needs lots of cash now, he does not have this option. One last tip here. A seller can sell the note and promissory to a commercial note buyer at a slight discount. This would be a cash out (talk to your CPA about possible tax consequences). How much of a discount? That depends on the interest rate, the security, the buyer’s credit and so on. The competition for good secured notes has heated up in the last 10 years, and now some notes are selling for only a 1% to 3% discount. That’s pretty darn good. I used to work for the largest note buyer in Washington, and the discounts we got then were much higher (often 30%). It’s good to know your options in today’s changing real estate market. Be careful in all of this. Get good professional advice, because as always, there are Traps for the Unwary.

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    Washington Real Estate Best Buy

    Oprah Winfrey guest Suze Orman, famous financial advisor, author and television personality, was asked to give a couple who was deeply in debt some financial advice. She called Seattle the hottest real estate market in the country. “Suze told [the couple] they must sell their California home and move to Seattle, Washington,” Oprah’s website explains. “With a booming housing market and high-tech industry, Suze says Seattle is particularly well suited to both Felice and Phil’s strengths-Phil is a computer contractor and Felice was once a mortgage broker,”.

    It is true. The real estate market for both buying and selling is better in the state of Washington than almost anywhere in the country. To all those considering a relocation, I strongly recommend Port Angeles real estate and Sequim real estate, whether you’re buying vacant land or a home.

    Read the full article about what Suse Orman said on Oprah’s show about Washington real estate.

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    Traps for the Unwary

    Traps for the Unwary

    Audio Versions, originally Broadcast on KONP Radio (1450 AM)

    Traps for the Unwary is a series started by Chuck Marunde many years ago.

    The topics are an outgrowth of practicing real estate law for 20 years and dealing with the most common real estate disputes and challenging issues that keep coming up.  The gist of the phrase, Traps for the Unwary, which Chuck coined while still practicing law, was based on the common experience that hundreds of clients had, which is that there are many little and potentially dangerous traps that people were completely unaware of.

    Trap for the Unwary #1: The Trespassing Fence
    Trap for the Unwary #2: The Trespassing Driveway
    Trap for the Unwary #3: Timber Trespass
    Trap for the Unwary #4: The Good Samaritan
    Trap for the Unwary #5: Encroaching Branches
    Trap the the Unwary #6: Road Maintenance
    Trap for the Unwary #7: View Easements
    Trap for the Unwary #8: Speed Bumps
    Trap for the Unwary #9: Private Well on Vacant Land
    Trap for the Unwary #10: Shared Wells
    Trap for the Unwary #11: Well Circles
    Trap for the Unwary #12: Buying Vacant Land

    Traps for the Unwary as Free Advice

    As a practicing real estate broker, Chuck now gives away his knowledge and experience in real estate law to his clients as a Realtor, which redounds to his clients’ great benefit, because they avoid so many of the common traps for the unwary.

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    Sequim Foreclosure Opportunities for Investors

    Sequim investors have been disappointed that there are not more real opportunities to purchase foreclosures at deep discounts.  Everyone knows foreclosures are up nationwide, but there are several states with very high rates that push the national average way up and push this news to the frontpage.

    “The highest rate, for the ninth month in a row, was in Nevada, which had 1 filing for every 185 households. Florida was No. 2, with 1 filing for every 253 households, followed by California with 1 for every 253 households. Other states with foreclosure rates in the Top 10 last month were Michigan, Arizona, Georgia, Ohio, Colorado, Texas and Indiana.” Providence Business News, Chart Couresy RealtyTrac, Inc.

    We have not seen such high foreclosures in Washington State. Certainly, we will see more. While a foreclosure is sad news for the homeowner being foreclosed upon (because of a loss of a job, divorce, or some other major financial crisis), it does present opportunities for buyers with cash. During any kind of downturn in real estate, the old rule still applies: Cash is King!

    If you do have funds to purchase foreclosures, please be aware of the traps for the unwary. If you haven’t been buying foreclosures for years (and even if you have), you would be well advised to get help from a professional who understands foreclosures and how to purchase them at the lowest possible price SAFELY. See help elsewhere on this site on buying foreclosures.

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  • Filed under: Foreclosures
  • FSBO Gets Ripped Off!

    Imagine thinking you have sold your house only to find out that it is not sold, and you now owe $86,000 for a loan you did not want.

    Then imagine that someone else got the $86,000, and your house is in foreclosure because of all this. For the story,

    For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Get Ripped Off
    Watch the Video Clip from Channel 13 in Las Vegas Here

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  • Filed under: FSBO
  • Seller Disclosure Statement

    Negotiating May Be Like a Cat and Dog Fight Now

    There’s a new Washington Supreme Court case that changes the way buyers and sellers will negotiate. The case is Alejandre v. Bull. This case addresses the hottest issue right now in the State of Washington for Realtors, buyers and sellers. It involves the issue of unintentional misrepresentation by a seller and what remedy a buyer will have. This is especially hot, because the brand new Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) Form 21, which is the Purchase and Sale Agreement used in almost all of Washington effective October 15, 2007, includes a check mark to include or not include a remedy for the buyer to sue the seller for unintentional misrepresentation.

    The actual language is, “Disclosures in Form 17: Buyer will ___; will not ___ have a remedy for Seller’s negligent errors, inaccuracies, or omissions in Form 17.” Form 17 is Washington’s Seller Disclosure Statement.

    Some have mistaken what this is all about, which is indicated by a response you will hear today by many in and out of the real estate business, “Well, seller’s should not be allowed to lie.” Another response is, “If the seller isn’t lying, what’s the problem?” That’s NOT what this is about. Those kinds of statements miss the whole point. Of course, seller’s should not lie. If the Alejandre case and the new language in the Form 21 was just about catching liars, we would all be rejoicing.

    This issue casts a very large net, and will capture honest and completely innocent sellers who never lied and had no way of knowing about a hidden defect or problem inside their septic, or inside a wall, or under their foundation, and so on. You get the point. But this new language gives them the right to sue, and maybe win a huge judgment against an honest and completely innocent seller.

    This ought to be a happy negotiating item between buyers and sellers, thank you very much lawyers and the NWMLS. (I’m a retired real estate attorney, but I would not have included this new remedy in Form 21.) There is a lot of misunderstanding and confusion about what this case means and how to handle the new Purchase and Sale Agreement. Realtors are challenged on how to explain this new option to buyers and to sellers.

    Now a seller has to agree in writing with a buyer that he can be sued not only for breach of contract, but also “in tort” for unintentional misrepresentation. A seller may not actually have been in side his septic tank, and he may not actually know if there is a latent defect. Now, if the seller agrees to allow the buyer to sue him for any defects, even those he didn’t know about in his septic system (or elsewhere), he can be taken to court and everyone can pay the attorney’s $30,000 to $70,000. What fun!

    My guess is that sellers will NOT agree to this (why would they?), so we will simply go back to the contract without this additional remedy for the buyer. The other amazing consequence of all this (as if it wasn’t predictable) is that sellers are going to make sure they don’t commit themselves to a “yes” or “no” on the Form 17 Seller’s Disclosure Statement if there is any possibility they may be sued. The safe answer may simply be an innocent “Don’t Know,” which oddly enough will actually help a seller from being held liable for misrepresentation. How’s that for gutting the State Legislature’s intent in creating the disclosure law?

    Here’s my prediction:

    1. Sellers will fudge on Form 17 statements, marking “Don’t Know” whenever they can to protect themselves; or
    2. Sellers will simply require the buyer to waive the Form 17 or they won’t sell the property to that buyer ; or
    3. Sellers will not agree to a buyer’s demand to check line 9 on the P&S giving the buyer the right to sue for unintentional misrepresentation; or
    4. Sellers will do both 1 and 3 above.

    How’s that for consumer protection! You’ve got to hand it to the lawyers and the NWMLS for destroying consumer protection in such a creative way. On top of that, they have confused the heck out of Realtors, buyers and sellers, and everyone in between. Even the lawyers across the state are in a frenzy writing each other legal memorandums, politely calling each other names.

    Who has the toughest job in all of this? I’ll tell you who. The Realtor. How does a Realtor explain any of this to his buyer or to his seller? May I wish all you Realtors good luck in coming up with a script that will keep you out of jail. (Oops! I am a Realtor! Eghad!)

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    Real Estate and Creating Wealth

    It’s much easier to talk about making a million dollars than doing it. Many of my clients have made their money in real estate. Some admit they got lucky in stocks. For a lot of good folks 2000 and early 2001 was the year to become an investor in stocks, and pile up massive capital gains in hot new tech companies. And then, the market tanked, and millions took huge losses very quickly. One estimate is that over $4 trillion dollars was lost. There was a lot of damage to retirement accounts, much of which has never been fully published.

    Having been a Real Estate Attorney (retired now) and currently a full time Realtor, I have been a strong advocate of investing in real estate since around 1976. During my law practice years in the 90’s to best serve my clients, I expanded my legal services to include estate planning, and to raise my competence, I became a Registered Investment Advisor and Certified Estate Planner. I spent a small fortune on specialized education and training.

    I also traded stocks extensively with my personal portfolio, including short to long term, and conservative to risky, traditional Dow stocks and NASDAQ stocks. I day-traded stocks including IPOs (initial public offerings), and . . . yes, I day-traded the riskiest NASDAQ options. Wow! Talk about a rush! Fast profits! Fast losses! I didn’t need drugs.

    Riding the crests of the market and surviving the valleys has clearly demonstrated the value of one of the oldest investment principles around: diversify your investments. I’ll take that principle one step further.

    1. Diversify your investments.
    2. Make real estate your primary investment.

    There are many other important investment principles and practices, but my emphasis here is that real estate is, and always has been, one of the safest and best long term investments in history. It doesn’t evaporate when the economy slides into a recession. It doesn’t lose its usefullness because international money markets are in a state of chaos. You’ll always have something you can walk on and “appreciate.” Tech stocks can appreciate incredibly, and part of your portfolio should be there, but as we all know, tech stocks can drop from $88 per share to nothing as did E-Toys back in 2001.

    Retirement planning is more difficult today than it has ever been for many reasons. Keep doing what you do well and get good advice on your investments. Diversify but make real estate your primary investment. Even real estate markets rise, plateau, and sometimes even decline, but over the long run, real estate is the best investment you can make in my opinion.

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    Timing is Everything

    That much of the nation is in the midst of a tenacious real estate correction is hardly headline news anymore. Investors have beaten a hasty retreat, leaving behind inventories of unsold homes that presently outpace the number of buyers in many markets. What should be headline news, however, is how the wisest of sellers have reduced their profit expectations and happily entertain all offers reflective of the corrected values of their homes. Yet, just because these market forces—combined with low interest rates—add up to an extremely good time to buy, doesn’t necessarily make purchasing a home a piece of cake. But there are ways to make it one.

    Here are five tips to help buyers tap into the best prices in many years:

    Get pre-approved for a mortgage. It’s a different sort of buyers’ market if you need to finance your purchase. Credit markets have tightened considerably, with half the products offered only a year ago no longer available today. Lenders have retreated to safer standards of underwriting that protect borrowers from overextending themselves. If you can’t afford a particular home using solid mainstream financing, you should continue looking.

    Let your fingers do the walking. With so many homes to see, attempting to visit each one is counterproductive. Wasted time creates missed opportunities. [At, you can browse the multiple listing service for all of the Sequim and Port Angeles areas.] Once you’ve narrowed your search, contact an experienced Realtor to help you judge the best values in your price range. Their insights, along with the analytical tools they bring to the table, will help you discard the overpriced lemons in your target neighborhoods.

    Beware of strangers bearing gifts. You aren’t shopping for a new car lease or a sexy new flat-screen TV, so don’t let merchandise incentives cloud your vision. If a seller is offering an incentive to buy, make sure it has something to do with the house, like a credit toward a desirable upgrade or a further reduction in price.

    When you find the right house at the right price, buy it! If recent sales in the neighborhood support its asking price, go for it. Presumably, you are hunting for more than just a good price; you’re also looking for that one special house that completely suits your lifestyle. Holding back in hopes that prices will go lower is a flawed strategy. You can never know this until prices are heading up again. Meanwhile, someone else may buy the home, especially if it is priced correctly.

    Make intelligent offers that enable you to negotiate with skill. Right now there is plenty of room to negotiate, provided you aren’t making uninformed offers that sellers don’t take seriously. You are in a much stronger position when you can show that recent sales in the neighborhood justify your offer. This provides a much firmer foundation from which to begin negotiations and takes you a giant step closer to enjoying your new home.

    Article Courtesy of Michael Saunders

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  • Filed under: Uncategorized
  • September Home Sales Port Angeles & Sequim

    These numbers match each month above in the chart. The total number of homes sold in Sequim and Port Angeles in September 2007 was 86. That’s not that much of a drop from the year before in Sept ’06 when 94 homes sold. Clearly, many homes are still selling, 86 in one month, which means buyers are still very active and homes that are priced right are selling. This is good news. It’s a great market for buyers with good credit, because they’re able to get low interest rate loans. Sellers are going to have to be a bit more discriminating on how they arrive at their listing price. While we still have a very active market, it has tightened a little.

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    Insider Tip for Buying Real Estate in Sequim

    Are you in the process of looking for and buying real estate in Port Angeles or Sequim? Here’s an insider tip to buying real estate here. This tip alone could save you $10,000 to as much as $70,000, depending upon the total price. Few buyers know how common this trap is, so let’s get to it. Quite often a listing on the market will be overpriced. That’s not front page news, right? If you’ve been around looking, you’ve seen a property listed for a lot more than it’s reasonable FMV (fair market value).

    Here’s the trap for the unwary purchaser by way of example.

    A house is listed for $269,000. A thorough search of all the sold listings that are truly similar in the local MLS demonstrates that the comps (comparables) that actually sold (as opposed to currently listed) fetched a price of about $230,000, but all of those comps had substantial improvements that the subject house did not have. That means, the house you’re looking at is worth less than $230,000. Depending on how you value the improvements to the comps, that could mean your subject house is around $212,000 to $220,000. With that in mind, you make an offer of $212,000, substantially below the listed price of $269,000, but you’re no fool. It’s worth less than $230,000, and you know from your detailed comparisons that it is probably around $212,000. So your offer of $212,000 is actually a full FMV price.

    Your offer comes back with a counteroffer at $261,000. You’re astonished. You don’t know what the seller is on, but it’s not milk or cool aide. Maybe the seller is not getting good advice from his or her agent, but you don’t even bother to make a counter to the counter. They are so far above FMV, there’s no sense wasting time when there are far better values available in this market. Far better.

    What the seller (or the seller’s agent) must hope for is that you are not tuned into the market, and that you will think that your next counter should be somewhere just below $261,000. Big mistake. It is over listed, over priced, and you should NOT get caught up in this trap for the unwary by paying way too much for it, all the while negotiating back and forth and ultimately thinking you negotiated a good price. No. Walk away. Let that seller and his/her agent learn their lesson. Let someone else from California pay $20,000 or $30,000 over FMV for that house. Someone may pay too much, but not you. YOU WILL NOT PAY ABOVE FMV FOR YOUR NEXT HOME, because you’re nobody’s fool.

    P.S. I see this all the time, so if you are buying, may I suggest you get a very experienced, honest, and good negotiator on your side? After all, it’s your money and your next home.

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    Port Angeles Hydroplane Racing

    Photo by Chuck Marunde

    Port Angeles is home to Strait Thunder, an incredible hydroplane race every fall. As always, it was loud and exciting! Check out these videos:

    View Entire Gallery

    Jim and Wanda Hightower

    Pit Tower Fun

    UL Heat 1A UL Heat 1B

    UL Heat 2A UL Heat 2B

    UL Heat 3

    UL Final

    Victory Lap

    Michael Flaherty Interview

    Greg Hopp Interview

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    Sequim Real Estate, Port Angeles Real Estate

    Are you buying or selling real estate in either Sequim or Port Angeles? The stakes are so big, whether you are buying or selling, it’s not a time for trial and error doing your own legal work, your own marketing, your own negotiating, and your own transaction supervision. Honestly, why risk making a mistake that could literally cost you tens of thousands of dollars, a lot of stress, and a lifetime of regret? (How do you think lawyers make so much money?) Look, I don’t know everything there is to know about real estate. I’m still learning, but I can offer you 30 years of experience in real estate sales and real estate law. If you want this kind of professional experience backing you up all the way, simply use this Sequim-Port Angeles information form, and I will surprise you with results. I promise.

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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
    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