If I were considering the purchase of an investment property, I would select an agent that is intimate and very knowledgeable with Hercules and Pinole. I would also look for an agent that specialized in the BANK OWNED Market, an agent that is internet savvy-to keep me posted of any new inventory that might suit my needs, has access to the properties, knows how to prepare a BANK OWNED Contract (they are different), and is aware of what the bank requires from the buyer prior to considering the offer. FYI--98% of the homes that are being sold are BANK OWNED, that being said, do your homework.
In the West Contra County Market there are several REALTORS that are offering BANK OWNED HOME TOURS; they don't require that you buy from them; however they do require that you be APPROVED for the purchase. Our office offers Daily Bank Owned Home Tours, our bus leaves the Hercules Office at 10 AM, we ONLY view BANK OWNED Properties, and on the average we view 4-7 Homes/Condos, the tour last 75 minutes. We have interior access to every home that we view. The Bank Owned Homes that are toured, are pre-selected based on the interest of the passengers, YUP a custom tour! We tour daily and on Weekends. Investor type properties are toured on Wednesdays.
All the Bank Owned Transactions I have experienced are sold in "AS IS CONDITION" Banks are not willing to make any repairs to the property; however they are willing to adjust the price if the condition of a large ticket item were in questions. I can provide you with a weekly list of all BANK OWNED Homes in the Hercules, Rodeo, Pinole & San Pablo, via EMAIL!
Best of Luck to you in your home search, I do hope that I addressed your question.
Viktor Manrique, Hercules Realtor
Rental Comparables.... http://www.zilpy.com/US/California/Contra_Costa_County/Pinol
Tax Sales ... http://www.sco.ca.gov/ardtax_public_auction.html
Market info for Bay Area/ ... Check this out closely if you haven't seen it before, Lot's of Info.
You might like to browse through the Bank/Gov. (REO/Foreclosure sites) property info and bid/purchase info. Sites like these... http://www.wamuproperties.com/ ... http://www.pasreo.com/pasreo/public/propertySearch.do ... http://www.homesales.gov/homesales/mainAction.do
You can find the links to all the Bank/Gov sites and more here... http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/wiki/REO_Database_List.asp ... http://www.biggerpockets.com/bank-reo.html
Good hunting, Dunes