As they say, "cash is king"....but just because someone is offering cash doesn't mean that it's the stronger offer.
Let's say someone offered $300k for a house listed for $325K. Another offered $325K for a 30-day close. If you were the seller, would you risk waiting 30 days for the $25K difference?
Unless the cash offer has no contingencies llke no buyer inspection, and it can close of escrow the next day,
and an AS IS sale, the cash offer is not necessarily that much stronger than another and higher offer with 30 days escrow, 20% downpayment.
Keep in mind that when one writes an offer, the higher the price, the bigger the deposit, the bigger the down payment, the shorter the escrow and contingency periods, the less credits and repairs requested, the better. Those are the areas where someone taking out a loan can compete with an all-cash buyer.
If you're looking in San Leandro at homes under $300k --- that's the hottest market where you have the largest pool of buyers now competing for the same property. There was a blogger who posted that he and his buyers were pondering whether to write an offer on one property that had 60 offers, and on another that has 30 offers. The reasons? Lower price, lower interest rate, more first time buyer incentives.
So it may be a buyers market...but know the specific market conditions and not from a world view.. Be guided by what your realtor is sharing with you. Don't automatically assume that you can always offer a lower price.
The last three offers I made, we had to compete in a multiple-offer scenario. Yes, it's hard to believe, but that's our LOCAL reality.