No matter what "deal" you get, the next buyer will want a better deal.
Don't do it, unless you have a great rehab team that can fix up on the CHEAP, and they can do it FAST. In a declining market, time is NOT on your side.
Seriously, FIx and Flip in this marketplace? Well maybe if you like Vegas!
Just being truthful, I'd make more money if you bought (from me) but then I'd have to honor my guarantee to sell it for free if you didn't make money.
In general, Loudoun County has a higher percentage of REO and short-sale properties for sale per capita than Fairfax County, but you don't have to rule out Fairfax County all together.
I specialize in working with buyer and investors. I am currently working with several investors buying properties in the area for both flip and long-term rental purposes while my business partner works with banks/lenders on listing foreclosure/REO properties for sale.
I personally like areas a bit closer in, too. There are plenty of properties around Fairfax and into the Falls Church/North Springfield area. They tend to be older--lots of 1950s ramblers and 1970s split levels. But the location is very, very good, and there are some very good buys.
There are plenty of Realtors who work with investors. I do, and there are many others. Here's a partial list: http://www.realestatecng.com/REITeam/index.cfm?Results_id=54279
Hope that helps.
Buying a foreclosure is little different from buying from a home owner occupant except that the banks are in a mood to dispose of these "assets" these days. We're seeing more negotiation on the part of banks than in years past. They need the liquidity that selling their foreclosures brings