Category: Chambers Bay


Boy! It’s been awhile and I’m glad to “be back”. I hope you are having a great new year in this 2010 and why not? I mean, yes, there’s rampant unemployment and bills need to be paid and businesses are not reaching their goals and schools need to be funded and the state has no idea where they will actually find sufficient sources of what they perceive to be necessary funding and our own city council is in crumbling disarray and… Whew! I’m starting to bring MYSELF down. Sorry. I’ll get off that. But why?

For a very good reason. Positive begats positive. Negative begats negative. That is to say that life proves to us over and over again that the more positive our attitude and actions are the more positive our experiences and outcomes will be. It’s just an undeniable fact of life.

In recovering from my open heart surgery, (exactly four years ago this week), I was one bitter son-of a gun and I let that linger for much too long of a  time. How did I expect to have positive things and positive people around me if I didn’t seem to have a positive bone in my body? The more positive I try to be, the more focused I am on BUILDING for the future, not tearing down but BUILDING….that’s a purely positive action…the more of that I exhibit, honestly, the more positive things flow my way and you know what, I love it!  And surprise – I get twice as much accomplished!

I could dwell on that topic for a month of Sundays but that’s not what you “tune in” here for, now is it?  So, what’s UP in U.P?

Hey. I got a postcard from a friend of mine who’s in the south sea islands on his well-deserved annual vacation!  He was around here about a month ago.  Thought you might agree…he deserves this.

Speaking of hard work, we’ve got a staff over there at the city that’s scrambling like a dozen eggs, doing more with less. That’s for sure. After the end of year staff cuts, staff members still have a bit of a hard time explaining all the hats they are wearing simultaneously. The harsh part of that were those who were let go. It’s the economic times we are in. I understand that. The only thing to do now, is to support the people who are here to support us. Those who are juggling jobs like a circus entertainer need to be given the rights that go along with the responsibilities. We’ve given them a lot to do. Now, we need to let them do it or they are absolutely bound to fail, with micromanagement, interference, etc. I hate to sound boring but treat them Positively and the quality of people we have in this city will care well for us and our neighborhoods.

Set them up to succeed.  Don’t harass them toward failure!

Mommy/Daddy and Me starts their Kids Love Soccer program Monday 1/25 for the 2-3.5 year olds.  Want to know more?  Hit the city website at www.ci.university-place.wa.us   While you are there, watch for info on the other YOUTH SOCCER programs for the various age groups.

Did you read the “big news” in the Tribune about the development at the Chambers Bay golf course?  Well, before you conclude that they are about to break ground on a hotel and everything else, understand that there’s no money on the table, yet and without it, it’s talk.  The developer happens to be an old friend of mine and actually a damned fine person (who I used to fight with constantly as kids…but that’s a different story….he really is a good guy).  But we do need to understand that if development of the nature being proposed does not have all the major glitches worked out and if it isn’t funded and ready to break ground aggressively within  about the next year or so, it’s not going to happen.  A committment has been made by our county to the USGA that Chambers Bay WILL be ready to host the U.S. Open in 2015 and if a development of this nature is not completed, well, let’s just say that a construction site is NOT where the USGA will host their tournament.  They always have an alternate site ready.  So, it’s either time to put up, strike the full agreement and break ground or go find another project.  All I’m saying is they’ve got to get a move on.  That’s the developer’s responsibility.  Commercial development monies are tight (Oh, THAT’S the understatement of this year!) as evidenced by the pace at Town Center but investment monies ARE there.  If the project is right and there is sales job extraordinaire being conducted…the $$$ will flow.

Since former Pierce County Exec, John Ladenberg first made it known that he wanted to see the course sited there, I always thought view residences could fund a lot of good things on site.  That is to say, the sale of impeccable view lots for multi-million dollar homes which would not be in the way of anything planned or in place today, could produce revenue to fund the building of a number of the other amenities you want in a destination resort such as Chambers Bay COULD become.  The developer  with a memo on the table, Jim Burkhouse, is a smart and successful guy.  If there’s a way to do it in this economy, he’ll figure it out.  The county would love to see it but it CANNOT get in the way of preparations for or the hosting of the US Open just five short years from now.  So, I suspect it’s an Elvis deal.  “It’s now or never”.

What else is up in UP?  I hate to sound like a broken record but if you’ve got somebody at your house interested in ballet, Polynesian dance, guitar or so many other instructional options, check out the city website.  Some are underway but many have more sessions starting shortly.  www.ci.university-place.wa.us

And for the not-so-young youngsters around here, the AARP Driver Safety course is set for Wednesday and Thursday 1/27 & 28 at the Senior Community Center on Grandview. Call 564-1992 to complete the required pre-registration.

Hey, by the way, let’s thank those folks, offices and companies who stood up to foot the bill to sponsor our Youth Basketball Coed League.  When you see the folks associated with these sponsors, please take the time to express your THANKS.  Sponsors make it possible for our kids to have this experience!  AHBL, Mercedes Nepute LMP, the Law Office of Clayton R. Dickson, Way Out Records, the UP Volunteer Center, Tacoma Bike LLC, Westside Community Bank, Owens Press Inc, the Pain Clinic, Alarm Works NW and Team Insurance. When city funds are tight, WE ARE THE CITY!!!  Isn’t it time for us to step up and make sure the programs which make this such a desireable place to live are maintained?

Sponsored youth athletics IS possible, isn’t it?  We can’t quite now, though.  We’ve really got to ratchet it up for the upcoming sports seasons.  Just think how many youngsters play softball and baseball. 460-2530 is the number to call at Parks and Rec to find out how you or your company can be a sponsor for U.P. Youth Athletics.  It’s important!

There’s so much more going on around University Place these day and we’ll get back to it all but before I close out with an updated look at U.P. real estate allow me to finish with just one simple thought.  If you never support any taxation levy ever again in your voting life, support the current request for University Place Schools.  There are those who say “Now is not the time, not in this economy.”  While I put off things I would like to buy right now for my wife and myself, I cannot put off funding for our school system. Yeah, sure my kids are all grown and long out of school.  That’s not the point and I take issue with ANY senior who says, “Don’t tax me. It’s somebody else’s turn.”  Well, you know what?  When we were putting our kids through school, we needed the support of the seniors who already had and you know that’s the truth!  It’s our turn to step up and support what those youngsters need, what our school district needs to remain one of the best in the state.  By the way, if you want to negatively affect the value of your home and property, just stop supporting our schools.  They backslide and so does your home’s value!  Undeniable Fact!  See that old black and white photo of Mr. George Curtis and friends in front of the old original U.P. Elementary School? (Yes, yes I did.)  Do you see what the sign said?   And now,  U.P. schools still need our support.  U.P. kids DESERVE it!

So, what has the U.P. real estate market been up to lately?   (Shhhhh Do you hear that quiet?)  It might be an overstatement to say you could hear a pin drop but it’s been very, very quiet.  In fact, since the day after Christmas there have only been seven U.P. residential sales close.  That included one condo.  Seven!   I have closed seven in one day…No, I haven’t. Five is my record but seven is very, very slow for a city of our size, especially for a period of nearly a month.  Two factors are to be kept in mind. Yes, the obvious…we’re in the heart of a very slow market but on top of that is the reoccurring factor of “Seasons”.  This is NOT the season for big sales in residential real estate.  We are approaching a traditionally stronger period but January is just a slow month and that’s ALWAYS a fact.  Now, couple that with the down market we are in and you get the picture.  Is that to say U.P. homes won’t sell now?  No, not at all. In fact, I’m listing a VERY marketable U.P. home next week and I promise you, it’s going to sell!  It’s a great 5-bedroom, beautifully remodelled home with a fantastic fenced yard, ringed by evergreens and … I’ll tell you all about it when I put it on the market.  In the meanwhile, WHAT’S SELLING?

REAL ESTATE SALE OF THE DAY: In an effort to help you keep tabs on this continually changing real estate market in University Place here’s another recently sold U.P. home with details from public information.  (In fact, to catch up, here are several)  SOLD7607 Chambers Creek Road West.  It started at $497,500 and after  dropping the list price to $449,950, they sold it for $412,000 in a mere 753 days….WHAT?!?  That’s over two years!  Yep, it is.  But that includes a period of time when they were offering a developement as part of the listing.  Overcomplicated deals aren’t going together right now. Those monies are hard to find.  Simple, well priced home deals work.     SOLD:  4108 Brouse Blvd West in the Heitman Addition near Curtis.  They listed it for $229,900 and sold it 53 days later for $225,000.  Another rambler, this one from 1963 offering 1,447 square feet including 3 beds and 1.5 baths. This home had some remodelling inside with Corian counters, cherry cabinetry, vinyl windows and hardwood floors and even as small as it is, it was relatively desireable and the price was right on.  So, it didn’t linger on the market as so very many are, here today.  The house on Sunset (above) sold in 247 days.  SOLD:  8314 63rd St St West. Now here was an owner-occupied home that was neither a Short Sale nor a bank owned property.  Oh, the market is just loaded with those at the moment and WILL be for some time to come.  Here was a home in comparatively excellent condition and it was originally listed for $395,000 but it was dropped to $330,000.  Why?  Because those cut rate deals on the bank owned and short sale properties effect EVERY home on the market.  In 91 days they took $335,000 for this 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath, 2,125 square foot home built in 1990 in the Danbridge community above Chambers Creek Road.  It’s only fair to add that they pay $157 per month in homeowner’s dues, there.  When you are looking at value and monthly payments, you’ve really got to look at the whole picture and those association dues are a legitimate part of that.  SOLD: 2019 Sunset Drive West.   Listed at $315,000 then eventually dropped all the way down  to $249,000 then sold for $245,000.  It was a bank owned 1954 rambler with 3 beds and 1.75 baths on a third of an acre with a 2-car garage. 2,644 square feet.  It closed on 12/30.  It took 434 days for this house to finally sell and close. Oh they had earlier sales…FOUR OF THEM!  None of them got past the inspection phase.  Think there was a problem with this house?  Oh, just maybe?

 

PAT MADDOCK     

Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS      3560 Bridgeport Way     University Place, WA  98466      patmaddock@cbbain.com

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Who is this guy?

As a top producer with Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS in University Place, Pat Maddock is the former President of the Tacoma-Pierce County Association of REALTORS and the 2009 Vice-President of the Washington REALTORS, the statewide trade association of professional members of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR). He also serves the University Place – Fircrest Division of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce on it’s Board of Directors and he serves the City of University Place on the Economic Development Commission. But most importantly, he’s been a University Place native since 1953. Pat is also a 20-year Air Force veteran.

You can find him at the Bridgeport office of Coldwell Banker Bain.  If you want to know something about University Place real estate, talk with someone who certainly does!

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You know what they say. It really does. Life DOES get in the way. “Best laid plans…” Etc. No excuses. Let’s get back to it!  Lot’s to talk about.

So, how’vyabeen? Were you happy withthe local results of the primary election? I’m very pleased that both the fire and EMS levies passed and I’m pleased about Connie Bacon’s strong showing in the Port Commissioner’s race and I think the U.P. City Council primaryCityofUP_logorace came out pretty much as predicted. What was it, about 300 votes separating Bird and Figueroa? You can bet their supporters will be out beatin’ the bushes between now and November. I know I will. Don’t know who I support and why…scan back a couple of blogs and you’ll get more than an earful.
Another interesing aspect of this particular race is that it is, in fact a Non-Partison position yet Figueroa has made a point of pursuing the local Republican party faithful in terms of endorsements. He’s well entrenched in our local, lackluster party while Bird, a Republican, is well entrenched in most every issue, event and activity in the City of University Place and she has been since well before we became a city, 14 years ago. What’s this election for, the Pierce County Republican Party or the City of University Place?
Look at your ballot. It reads NON-PARTISAN. Get it?

(Note for the record:  No. I’m not a Democrat)

“As the test pilot climbs out of the experimental aircraft, having torn off the wings and tail in the crash, a rescuer spots the bloodied pilot and ask, ‘What happened?’ ‘I don’t know,’ says the pilot, “I just got her, myself.'”

Gotta dog? UP’s 3rd Annual PUPS IN THE PARK is scheduled for Saturday, Aug 29th from 10am – 2pm. It’s a great and growing event and you can get all of the details at the city website www.cityofup.com or by calling UP Parks and Rec at 460-2530.

Did you see where just recently GOLF Magazine named CHAMBERS BAY as on of the “50 Greatest Golf Courses in the last 50 Years”?
You know, sometimes you’re just too close to something to realize how damned good it really is!
Mt. Rainier. Thousands of international tourists and world-class climbers flock there every year and marvel at the majesty. We see it off in the distance and have a tendency to take it for granted.
Other local targets? Mt. St. Helens is a wonderfully unique treasure and how about those two massive bridges out there, side by side. The inland waterways of the Puget Sound. Ask a visitor from Germany, China, Syria or South Africa if the Puget Sound is impressive. They’ll gush!
Olympic National Park, again, just an outline in the distance, the other way but hikers, sightseers and backpackers from around the world pay big bucks to get here every year and you can’t keep them away from the Ho Rain Forest, Kalaloch and Hurricane Ridge.
Seattle’s Experience Music Project, Tacoma’s Museum of Glass and what about the Space Needle? Now, add Chamber Bay golf course. No, kidding, one of the best…of the best, right here in University Place. They already come from around the world to play it and get swept away by the scenery as they do and it’s right in your backyard. And, oh, by the way, what a great place to stretch your legs. Wanna find your neighbors? I find them down at Central Meadows Park, on the walking trails around the course or swinging a club on the back nine. Everybody knows about the two HUGE tournaments they’ve already earned and scheduled. So, I won’t belabor that point but man, oh, man…Chambers Bay…what a place!

Say, speaking of the fire and EMS levies passing in the recent election, UP Fire Deptdid you hear that the UP Fire Department just got a significant upgrade in the rating issued by the state? They had been rated a Class 4 operation for well over the past decade until a recent reevaluation of their training, facilities, prevention and education…even their fire trucks and hydrants. They are now rated Class 3 and are tied with only one other fire district in all of Pierce County at that highest rating achieved by any local department. That rocks! Those gals and guys take outstanding care of all of us, if only in their preparations to do so and after all, that’s what counts…they’re capable and ready! By the way, that move up to Class 3 is no small deal. ( No wonder they won the recent Hogs and Hosers softball game! )

REAL ESTATE SALE OF THE DAY: In an effort to help you keep tabs on this continually changing real estate market in University Place here’s another recently sold U.P. home with details from public information. SOLD: 3120 Glendale Drive West.  Just a cute little post war (1945) 3 bedroom, 1.75 bath home built at a time when the GI’s of WWII were coming home with the GI Bill and VAGlendale benefits and America needed homes for all of the marriages that were happening from coast-to-coast.  Tacoma, University Place…most every city has a neighborhood or neighborhoods that are loaded with those home and for those that have been maintained or even improved over the years, Yes, there certainly IS a market out there for them.  Take this one for example. They asked $239K and they got $239K and they got it in 3 days!  Why?  Because it’s an affordable home in a great school district and a growing city where the quality of life is enviable. 

This end of the marketplace and by that I mean this price range, is moving. In the business, we call them starter homes and there is plenty of good mortgage money available for them.  No, I’m not talking adjustable rate mortgages and the sub-prime garbage that launched our current crisis. I’m talking about all of the 30-year fixed rate mortgages being offered right now for approximately 5%.  That’s great money!  No kidding. 

You want one even better?  A friend of mine and a good, ethical gentleman, Mr. Mark Meath at Citybank, has VA home loans for LESS THAN 4.5% right now…No, I am NOT kidding!  Think of what your monthly payments would look like if your mortgage loan was less than 4.5%.  Our inventory is still very, very high but that just means CHOICES for home buyers.  We’ve been plagued by buyers sitting on their hands for over a year now, fearful of what the economy is going to do.  I will PROMISE you this.  When the economy turns, which, historically it ALWAYS has, millions of buyers, realizing that just as the upswing in the economy hits, so, too will the upswing in home prices hit…Yep, they’ll all look in the mirror and ask themselves, “Why didn’t I buy when prices and interest rates were so low?”  And unfortunately, many will follow that with, “Now, I can’t afford to!”

We are reading headlines, seeing statistical reports and hearing that the upswing is beginning, the market is starting to move. Is it?  I’m not 100% sure but I can only “touch” may part of it and know what’s there for sure and this weekend I have three different negotiations in progress.  Three offers on three homes we are currently negotiating on.  One in Gig Harbor (It’s REALLY been slow over there lately.),REALTOR one in Tacoma’s North End and, of course,  one right here in University Place.  I haven’t seen action like that in ages!  Judge for yourself.  Is now the time to buy or sell?  Low interest rates, choices, more offers coming in from more recently active buyers…hmmmm?  Well, if you have any questions, you know who to call.

One of my favorite tee-shirts of all time was popular back when I was wearing an Air Force uniform. My buddy, the crazy Irishman MSgt. Michael Patrick O’Brien, Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) technician (as Michael used to say “That’s a bomb guy…you know, defuse ’em not make ’em”), proudly wore his shirt…OFF duty. On the back, it simply said, “I’m an EOD Tech. If you see me running, try like hell to keep up!”

bearFor those of us who love to pound the trails of western Washington with a backpack on our backs, that EOD admonition is similar to the one Olympic mountain backpackers share about the black bears. “If a bear attacks, you don’t have to be the fastest in your group. You just can’t be the slowest!”

PAT MADDOCK   Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS      3560 Bridgeport Way West,  University Place, WA 98466                (253)682-1182

 patmaddock@cbbain.com

cbbain-intranet-header2

Who is this guy?

As a top producer with Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS in University Place, Pat Maddock is the former President of the Tacoma-Pierce County Association of REALTORS and a current Vice-President of the Washington REALTORS, the statewide trade association of professional members of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR). He also serves the University Place – Fircrest Division of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce on it’s Board of Directors and he serves the City of University Place on the Economic Development Commission. But most importantly, he’s been a University Place native since 1953. Pat is also a 20-year Air Force veteran.

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