In a real estate transaction who represents whom can sometimes be confusing. You have buyer’s agents, listing agents, and attorneys who all are involved in getting your home to closing.
The listing agent is the one who has the sign in the front yard. That person represents the seller and is the person marketing and promoting the home. Buyers may call the listing agent for information about a home but they should be aware that the listing agent is working for the seller. The listing agent as well as the buyer’s agent owes all parties fairness and honesty.
Buyers have two choices on representation. They may choose to be represented by a buyer’s agent. This is the preferred choice of most buyers. Representation by a buyer’s agent cost the buyer nothing but it means that in the transaction someone is protecting their interest.
Buyers may choose to have no representation and may do so when they see a home with the listing agent and want to put an offer in on that home. If a buyer has any doubt about representation, they should seek a buyer’s agent to represent them in their purchase.
If you hire an agent to represent you, that agent is typically paid by the listing agent from their proceeds earned from the seller. As strange as that may sound the seller pays the listing agent and the listing agent agrees to an amount in advance that they will pay the buyer’s agent.
I think it would be wise to interview the agent before you begin your search. If you feel that it is a good match then hire that agent. Typically a buyer’s agent will not charge a fee to help you find a home.
Some agents will ask you to sign an agreement that you in fact work with them exclusively to find a home. This agreement lays out what is expected of both parties. It protects the agents time and effort and assures the buyer that somebody will be working diligently to find that perfect home.
The last piece of the puzzle is the attorney who handles the closing. The attorney represents the lender but is paid by the buyer or seller depending on the one who agrees to pay the closing cost on the transaction.
The attorney handles the closing which includes the title search, executing the mountain of papers that must be signed by the parties and disburses the funds as directed by the contract.
If you have questions about representation please feel free to contact me, and I will be happy to help you. It can be confusing so shop around and ask questions before you make a decision.
You may also wish to read this detailed article written by John Adams for Realtor.com.
Happy Father’s day to all the super Fathers! Father’s day means not many open houses this week. Check back next week as I know several are planned.
Homes just listed include the following.
6205 Courtside Drive
624 Lakeshore Drive