Everyone has given you good advice.
Here are some extra pointers though...
1. Consider what your reason for purchasing a REO or SS home is? Sometimes better deals can be found by motivated sellers!!
2. Interview a few agents, and find one that you know will look out for your best interest. If their only concern is if you are pre-approved for a loan, be concerned!!
3. How much down... It will mainly depend on your method of financing.
Hope this helps..
I could list about 40 different things you MUST watch out for when working w/ REO and SS property. All of that is covered in our buyer consultation when we meet with our buyers. I'd love to get the opportunity to go much more in depth on those if you have the time.