We 'followed the rules'. Didn't get attatched to one single home, got good comps and CMAs, etc. Just because it's not primarily an investment doesn't mean you can ignore the fact that it is one. I found a very nice 1/2 acre, bank owned homestead. Even though it sold for over 1/2 million dollars a year earlier, it was still overpriced at a listing price of $375,000. We are in escrow @$330,000.
We signed a buyers agreement for each home seperately. Each home we offered on we signed an agreement that only covered that particular property. My Realtor has his heart in the right place and worked very hard for us. I was kind of dissapointed in that he didn't find many listings for us. We found the overwhelming majority ourselves and forwarded them to him to show us them.
Once we started working in earnest on the home we are currently in escrow with, the communication with that particular listing agent and bank was terrible. To our Realtors credit he never stopped trying and always kept us informed of what was going on. Even if that was simply "They won't return my calls and emails".
Overall, it's been a great experience. We are completly happy with the way things turned out, but it HAS been a long, windy and bumpy road. I repeat, in my case, getting info out of the Seller/bank and the listing agent was almost painful. The home may lose some more value in the short term. But, considering that it was mainly a residence and secondly an investment and the fact that this home should be one of the first to 'bounce back' in the area, I'm not of a mind to worry over any possible 'lost equity'.