I am finding my investors property in East Palo Alto, east Menlo Park, and east Redwood City that can be purchased with 20% to 25% and provide a small positive cash flow.
Being able to find properties on the Peninsula which will cash flow with 20% to 25% down was unheard of 3 or 4 years ago.
Most of these REOs can now be purchased for about 1/2 of what they sold for 3 to 5 years ago.
I agree there is a good chance for future appreciation.
And property values do not need to return to the PEAK in order for these properties to be good investments.
Of course, most of these properties will not be in good condition and most of the tenants for these properties may have credit issues or be on the Section 8 HUD housing program.
So you will need to prepared to actively manage these properties or hire a professional to do the same.
You can go to my website for a up-to-date list of foreclosures.
Focus on finding the "best" property you can find for you money.
Sounds like you are pretty solid, so it's about finding the "right" property for you. Are you looking for an investment that will pay you right away with cash flow, or more concerned with your ROI in the next 5-10 years? It's not always how much, but how long. The longer you stay in the market, the more you will make.
If you are looking in San Mateo County, I think you will find some very good properties that have tremendous upside in appreciation. These investments should pay your principal and interest, and possibly your property tax. They may even provide a little bit of cash flow, but not much.
If you are more concerned with cash flow, you might be better off investing in Santa Clara or the East Bay.
I'm more than happy to email you potential investment properties, and I can put you in touch with someone who will find you good tenants.
If you would like i can send you some listings in San Mateo and Santa Clara county area of your choice.
Let me know as well if you have any questiions and would be glad to answer tehm for you.
I recommend Cynthia Continello with Villa Properties. She is a foreclosure specialist that works in our brokerage. You can learn more about her and contact her at http://www.reolady.net.