I put together a monthly market analysis for the different towns in the East Bay ... you can read the one for Walnut Creek here:
What is it that interests you about the East Bay? Based on your needs/wants/wishes you can narrow down towns and then neighborhoods-some are crazier than others. Do you want to walk to get your Starbuck's in the morning? Want to be steps from a hiking or bike trail? Want a large lot for your organic veggie garden? Higher price ranges are a bit less frenzied. Those of us who are active in the industry & regularly network with other real estate professionals, often hear about a 'coming soon' not yet on MLS. This can be very helpful in a competitive market like the one we are in. I am a life-long east bay gal, and Contra Costa is my playground. Feel free to call if you'd like to chat. 925-788-6582. I'd be pleased to offer my 2 cents to a fellow professional in the 'biz.'
So don't be surprised that even with distressed properties such as short sales and bank-owned listings, there is also brisk activity.
Determine where you want to live, find a local agency with realtors who really know the area, and listen to what they say.
I posted this question Write an offer for over list price on a regular sale? Why? Why not? See
Other agents from different areas weighed in...and they, too are seeing multiple offers in their neck of the woods.