Outside of San Francisco - a hot market?

Just a couple of real estate anecdotes.... I was in a Wells Fargo branch yesterday and the business account rep was telling me how he's lost out on 3 offers on East Bay homes, including one where he bid $50,000 over the asking price. He is buying purely for investment purposes, and is focusing on Bank Owned "REO" properties. He says he expects to earn about $100 to $300 per month over his costs in rent based on what he knows about the market. So from an anecdote standpoint... the low end of the market is on fire with investors competing with each other to get in.

Meanwhile, the branch manager said her mother saw a house hit the MLS down in the south bay for about $100,000 below what most homes sell for in the area... asking under $600k when most sell in the high $600's. She said when they got to the house there was a lineup of 35 buyers waiting for the agent to arrive and open up the house. Imagine that... read Patrick.net and all you hear is that the sky is falling... but actually hit the streets and you see a lineup of anxious Buyers trying to snap up anything that looks like a bargain. Tip - don't read blogs from self proclaimed experts who don't ever shop for homes and only scour the internet for bad stories to promote their agenda.

Now this is a San Francisco real estate blog, and I'm a self proclaimed city of San Francisco expert... but hey, I've got "feet on the street" expertise looking at homes on behalf of both Buyers and Sellers almost every day..... but I'm always referring to how the general news is so bad, so it was quite interesting to hear first hand from actual Buyers how active the markets really are when the price is right.

So.... prediction.... the bottom is here folks... time to find your bargain or watch as they disappear again. The bottom will last a while yet, and there will be bargains probably for another year. But with interest rates down a 1/2 point, and banks under-pricing their listings, now is the time to buy before all of the above mentioned craziness re-inflates the prices.

You may also be interested in:
Mortgage Rates Plummet
REO search on the San Francisco MLS
Short Sales in San Francisco
First Time Home Buyer - where do I start?

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