Foreclosure in San Ramon>Question Details

Chris Smith, Both Buyer and Seller in 94583

Is it possible to find a good deal on investment property in the Bay Area using an agent?

Asked by Chris Smith, 94583 Thu Sep 27, 2007

...or is it best to try and find someone with a fixer-upper who wants to sell on their own?

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Chris, in my experience both as a Realtor/Broker and as an investor--unless you have some sort of direct source of fixer-uppers, you'll be pounding alot of pavement to find that great deal, and you have to be a crack negotiator to handle dealing directly with the seller. What I've been finding most often lately is that sellers are completely misinformed (or misled) about what the value of their property really is in this kind of a market, so unless you're shopping foreclosed properties, you're better off going with an experienced agent who works with investors and can help you weed through the quagmire of properties out there, and believe me--there are ALOT!
Another piece of advice: have a really good home inspector that you trust who can give you a realistic expectation of repair costs.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Absolutely. Good deals come from many different avenues, usually an agent will speed up the process and make sure alot of common mistakes are not made. Also even if you buy an investment if it not through an agent, such as a FSBO im sure any investment based realtor understands. Most investors might not use a buyers agent but will utilize there realtors expertise for consulting, and thus when rehab is done have that same professional list the property.

A Realtor is always a must on your Real Estate investment team.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 17, 2007
There are very few resaonable investment returns on small East Bay real estate deals. Many of the cap rates pencil out at 3-7% and one when considers the risks involved, that has more seasoned investors looking to sell properties and not buy them. But for the record, there is no comparison buying with or without a good agent-- they will more than pay for themselves on any deal you do. The problem is that most people do not know how to interview and select the best agents. Caveat Emptor.
Web Reference: http://www.apr.com/dougm
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 17, 2007
Is it possible to find a good deal using an agent? That's exactly the reason why you want to use a Realtor when you are looking for a property, whether it is your home or investment property.

A good deal on investment property is relative to the area you are in; and yes, you can find great deals now in the Bay Area, especially if you have an agent who helps you do the search and leads you to the best property. .

They have the knowledge of the market, the inventory, what are selling now, and what are stalling, How to make attractive offer, how to talk to the listing agent, another middle person to negotiate the best deal for you.

Many times, FSBOs want to get the most for their money (saving commission, priced high and then they eventually go with a realtor), you really don't get a good deal buying through them and you bear all the liability that come with purchasing a property on your own.

Sylvia
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Sylvia Barry,…, Real Estate Pro in Marin County, CA
MVP'08
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What part of the Bay Area are you looking in? Many times your "best deals" lie outside the Bay Area. Don't limit yourself to the possibilities. There are so many opportunities out there right now. Don't burden yourself with short sales. If you are in a position to buy TODAY, bank owned properties are what you should concentrate on.

With short sales, the bank has not yet realised their loss and they have employed loss mitigators to bail them out the best they can. That is their job.

Go for the bank owned homes. No emotions to deal with, no idiot loss mitigators to deal with. Just brass tacks. This is the market to work. You'll get a much better deal.

And by the way... there is financing available out there for these homes. 100% even for investors! Your credit can not be horrible but it does not have to be stellar either. Stated income is OK too. Even for investors. If you know where to look.

Smoking deals!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Chris, you have a much better chance of finding a good deal on an investment property by using an agent than if you don't. Agents have access to many more properties than an individual can find on their own.
Web Reference: http://www.DotChance.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Investment properties just so happen to be my specialty. I am an active investor as well as a licensed Broker and Realtor. Let me know if I can be of any help.
Web Reference: http://www.BayAreaREI.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Chris, You may be able to find a better deal WITH an agent than without one! Happy Hunting!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
A great agent may actually know of situations that would fit for you--people who've thought of selling or need to sell to an investor. Also, people like me already subscribe to the legal services and know of the foreclosures, preforeclosures, etc. So connecting with a knowledgeable consultant can make the entire process smoother and more profitable for you as a buyer. Keep in mind the highest percentage of RE lawsuits involve unrepresented parties. As a buyer in CA you usually pay zero yet can access the best agents available.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Chris,
I agree with Ute, but also keep in mind, that the agent has your best interest in mind. Disclosures are also a huge issue. Most agents are very good about getting any and all disclosures uncovered and disclosed, whereas if you are dealing with a Seller directly, they may not disclose everything... Also, an agent may have more resources to search for you (via the MLS, and other networks they belong to) so you are at an advantage by having access to all that information. Bottomline, like Ute said, it does not hurt you to use an agent because the Seller typically pays the agent's commission.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Hi Chris. I don't think you have to make a choice between one or the other. Just becaus the agents get paid commissions does not mean that the buyer can't get a good deal. If I were you, I would explore all options. My only request would be that you are up front with your agent. I don't mind helping someone who tells me that they are also looking at FSBOs. What I detest is people who are not straight with me. Hope you don't mind me sharing this bit of advice with you. Good luck finding a good deal.
Web Reference: http://www.go2kw.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 27, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
MVP'08
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