The recent subprime lending issues have certainly lead to an increase in foreclosures in what is known as the north Katy market - north of Interstate 10. While there are abundant opportunities, it would be wise to have an expert in the area advise as to any adverse conditions that might affect your ability to either lease the property or to 'flip' and put it on the market to sell. Supply and demand will have a large affect on the appreciation of these properties. Also, the days of really picking up a bargain on foreclosures are just about gone. Be sure you have done your homework on comparables in the area, how many foreclosures you will be competing against in the future on the flip or leasing market and how much this property is truly worth. Regarding For Sale By Owner or FSBO, where a seller may choose to represent themselves, buyers might wish to consider having an experienced real estate professional, preferably a Realtor, who can help them through the mind field of inspection, survey, title and appraisal issues. Many transactions fail to close simply because neither party truly understood the challenges involved in one of the most complicated processes that we, as consumers, will go through in our lifetime. As a Realtor, it is my job to anticipate and work through these issues on behalf of my clients.