I have purchased bank REO properties at times. The banks tend to price them very close to market in order to get as much as possible. You can get a deal in the case where a house needs a lot of work AND it hasn't sold in a long period of time AND the bank actually cares. The problem is that these portfolio are managed by hourly employees who just follow the guidelines and have no vested interest in getting deals done. I had times where I made an offer and my agent followed up only to be told that the person who handles that is on vacation and we have to wait until they return. It takes some getting used to.