Blue, Home Buyer in Fremont, CA

How much can I lowball for a foreclosure home? My friend bought one for 30% less than asking price in sacramen

Asked by Blue, Fremont, CA Tue Apr 8, 2008

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Ken Vasan, Agent, Fremonet, CA
Tue Apr 8, 2008
It depends on market condition. If there are too many homes on foreclosure, you can low ball to your heart content and try your luck. In fremont, I have heard that some of the homes get as much as 14 offers. It all again depneds on the local market conditions. Godd Luck
2 votes
CJ Brasiel, Agent, San Jose, CA
Tue Apr 8, 2008
Blue -

It very much depends on the home, the lender, and the agents involved. Realizing these are usually AS IS sales, the cost for any repairs must be added into the total amount. Recently, banks are starting to make deals as their inventory portfolios swell and their office staff continues to be buried with defaults.

In this market, write and offer you can live with (afford) and go for it. All they can say is - no.

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2 votes
Pacita Dimac…, Agent, Oakland, CA
Tue Apr 22, 2008
The first question you should ask is if the list price is realistic based on the current market. If it is listed at $500K, but similar homes in the area are listed at or sold for $300K, then you should lowball the offer at $300K --- and gloat that you got it for a substantial amount below list price.

Everything is relative. Find out how much the bank/lender bought it from, and you can use that as the basis for your offer. Get the history of the property when it was last listed and sold (a realtor can get that info for you).

Remember that there are quite a few bargain hunters there. When you see a good deal, so will they. Give it your best shot. If you don't get it, move on to the next. It's a great time to be a preapproved buyer.

Good luck!
1 vote
Voices Member, , San Jose, CA
Wed Nov 4, 2009
In San Jose in Particular and in Bay Area in general, you have to bid at least 5% above asking price to have any chance.
0 votes
Donna Davis, Agent, Escondido, CA
Mon Jun 9, 2008
In San Diego and Riverside Counties where I work, many foreclosures have multiple offers and the prices get bid above list price. You must remember that lender owned properties have been appraised and/or had BPO's done on them. They often are listed substantially below market value already to encourage quick sales. If someone is getting a 30% off deal, I would want to know how long the property has been on the market and what is wrong with the property that the lender is willing to sell it for so cheap. Always have your Realtor pull comps and send them with your offer in case the lender is relying on an old appraisal that is higher than current sales indicate.
0 votes
Susan Vander…, Agent, Lake Elsinore, CA
Fri May 2, 2008
As a follow-up to your question, I have been working on the listing side of bank-owned properties. I've seen less experienced agents being led by their buyers thinking they could get "lowball deals". I've seen it -- the buyers lose out on the house. It doesn't matter how much you want the house, you should offer what you feel is fair and what you can pay for it. Don't overdo the offer price to the point where you would not qualify for financing and don't try to ask for too much credit back. If you don't be fair, you're going to lose in a bidding war. This is especially true for desirable areas of Fremont, Moutain View, San Jose, etc. where properties are getting multiple offers. Also keep in mind that Sacramento is a different market than where we are in the Bay Area.
0 votes
Brian Curry, Agent, San Diego, CA
Wed Apr 23, 2008
A lot of what you are trying to accomplish depends on what your time frame is. Short Sales tend to take the longest due to the "behind the scenes" haggling with lenders as well as the amount of participation a seller is willing to give to his agent and the bank. REO properties are usually fixed pricing at the bank level thus they tend to move quicker but may be in poorer condtion. Auction foreclosures can be a great bargin. Dont be afraid to low ball though. Getting a great deal in this market requires patience and some rejection from various properties. Stay the course though...there are some awesome deals to be made.
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0 votes
Tomaj Trenda, Agent, Lafayette, CA
Wed Apr 23, 2008
That depends on what state of foreclosure the property is in. Short Sales are a good way to go. I recently sold a beautiful 4b/2.5 view home in the San Leandro hills for $450,000....$200,000 LESS than the previous owner owed on the property! She had bought for $650,000 just 1 1/2 years ago. I helping a buyer pruchase a short sale in Walnut Creek for roughly $200,000 les than the $600,000 price tag just 6 months ago.
Auctions - NON-foreclosure auctions, that is, is another great way to go. You can finance these purchases, and you get a marketable title to the property, free of encumerances - unlike Foreclosure auctions.
If you have any questions about either short sales or auctions, feel free to contact me at or 415-505-3536. I'd be glad to help.

Tomaj Trenda
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0 votes
Susan Vander…, Agent, Lake Elsinore, CA
Tue Apr 22, 2008
Everyone wants a bargain! But understand that it depends on the local market and other factors (i.e., city, neighborhood, economy, condition of the property). Sacramento has lots of bank-owned. 30% below is not bad; it's probably standard.

I know because our company has bank-owned listings in Sacramento. I also know the Sacramento market. Anyway, I hope that helps.

I see you're in Fremont. Some areas of Fremont, people have bought 50% below market, but Fremont is bouncing back and inventory is low. It really depends on the local neighborhood, economy, condition of the property, etc..

When I attended auctions, I've witnessed properties selling at 50+% below market, particularly in Discovery Bay and Antioch. Also, you should make sure that the values you are looking at are true values. A real estate agent who is well-versed in this area should be able to tell you when looking at a street if that is a good value.
0 votes
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