P_mac757: It sounds to me as though you need to speak to a loan officer. You need facts not opinion. You will be required to provide documentation of your income and a credit check revealing your FICO score. These facts are what the loan officer will base your ability to repay a loan and their willingness to loan you a specific amount. When you have specific knowledge about your situation you will then be able to seek a real estate purchase within your budget. Your quest for a purchase 'on the cheap' will be determined by what is on the market at the time you are qualified to search and what a seller/homeowner is willing to sell for based on current market conditions. Take advantage of any down payment assistance programs available in your area and inquire about rehab loans to assist you with any repairs a property may require. If you have 'cash' available for a purchase then of course you can skip the above steps and purchase only in the price point of your available funds.
I say yes! Check out Regions Bank! It will depend on the price of the house and also if this is your first house then it is possible that you can take advantage of a first time home buyer bond. Basically, helps you with your downpaymnet.
You can certainly pay cash...the more important issue I would think would be how to improve your credit score....a longer term solution. The value of a home you can purchase would also be determined by your income....Dave Ramsey does a good job in his book The Total Money Makeover in advising folks on credit repair....might be of some help
Yes, you can always purchase a home for cash. So you would have to determine what is cheap. What properties are in your price range. What condition they will be in for a certain price. How you are going to make this home livable without any lender financing.