If you have to purchase a house now, I may hire a agent. Now, I can wait. Without a agent, I still can low ball on REO/short sales, plus get 3% credit back for buy agent fee. I am very patient now. I can wait for 6 months or 12 monts.
For this one, I will low ball at $750k. It will be $730k after 3% credit back. With this price, it will provide some cushion for further 5%-10% market deterioration. If the same house sold below $600k, that will be really really surprise me. If the expected does happen, who will pay 2x or even 3x for houses in Pleasanton, in Fremont, in Santa clara, in San Jose, in Cupertino. Shorter commute time and better school won't adjust for the price difference.