In fact, you shouldn't call anyone who advertises homes for sale! If you are thinking about buying a home, think about this. The real estate agent whose name is on the "For Sale" sign represents the seller. Their job is to sell you the home.
It is the listing agent's job to obtain the best price, not for you the buyer, but for her client, the seller.
Most people, who call the real estate agent whose name is on the "For Sale Sign,"assume that the real estate agent is "their agent," when, in fact, that agent is actually representing the seller.
A Federal Trade Commission study found that over 72% of the people who purchase property were unaware that the real estate agent who "helped them purchase their home," really represented the sellers of the property.
A seller's agent is bound by law, to tell the seller all he knows about the buyer and to keep all information about the seller confidential. Sales people representing the seller are not allowed tell you what the seller's motivation is, how long a property has been on the market, or what price the seller might accept. This information is confidential between the seller and the seller's agent. When a buyer visits an "Open House" that seller's agent is trained to ask what a buyer might think are innocent questions. Such as:
- "How soon do you plan on moving?"
- "Do you have a contract on your house?"
- "Can I help you get your present house sold, so that you can enjoy this one?"
- "Our company can help you with any special financing. How much do you think you will need?"
On the other hand, any information the buyer may have told that agent will be passed along to the seller. After all, that seller's agent is obligated to obtain the highest price and the best terms for his client!
You be the judge. Can someone who, by law and contract, is obligated to represent the seller successfully negotiate the best terms and conditions for a you, the buyer?
Traditional Agent or
an Exclusive Buyer's Agent?
The Seller's Agent or Listing Agent
The seller's agent, also known as the listing agent, is the worst type of agent for you to use when buying a home. They are the best agents for sellers, but you are not selling! Using a seller's agent to buy a home eliminates any possibility of having a honest and knowledgeable real estate agent working to protect your best interest.
All confidential information a buyer discloses to a seller's agent is, by law, passed on to the seller, thus seriously affecting your ability to negotiate. Seller's agents are committed to the seller to get the highest price possible from a buyer.