You need to stop reading advice from a year ago - the market is totally different.
Yeh you really need to familarise yourself with the local market, a basic way to do this is set up rightmove alerts your area for your price range. Youll soon get a handle on what sells quick for what sort of money, and what's sat on the market for a while.
I was looking at a place for 170k but the survey came back with 20k of actual work that needed doing. the vendors priced it like all it would need is a lick of paint and new carpets. Made an offer -20k from the asking price and they rejected it. I walked away. It eventually sold for 5k more than my offer, some months later.
No regrets though as the hassle of getting tradespeople in and the disruption wasn't worth the effort (to me), whereas it might be ok for a builder/roofer type person that could do most of the work themselves..