Agency Relationships and the Role of Your Agent

When buying and selling a home it can be confusing who represents your best interests. One of the first things I talk about with you - my client is agency relationships. As a real estate agent, I am an agent for the brokerage I represent. Even though we spend all of our time together and form a great relationship the actual formal relationship you enter into is with the brokerage. There are 3 types of agency relationships - single, limited joint and customer. The most common is the single agency relationship wherein the brokerage represents one party, limited joint can occur when 2 connected parties are involved and a customer relationship occurs when there is limited services rendered but a formal agency relationship is not formed. So single agency is when your sole interests are represented as a buyer or as a seller. Therefore, there are buyers’ agents and seller's’ agents and a real estate agent can function as both when helping you purchase a new home or sell your existing home. Limited joint agency can occur when the same brokerage represents both parties at the same time. An example of this can be if you as my buyer client purchase a home from a client of another agent within my brokerage. Disclosure of this dual interest is made and then you have the option to sign a form acknowledging this limited joint agency relationship. This situation can occur quite often and is generally not a problem when all involved are aware of the situation and act in a professional manner. The most important message I wish to share is the fact that the REAL ESTATE AGENT ON THE FOR SALE REPRESENTS THE SELLER. Therefore if you are a Buyer it is strongly recommended that you DO NOT have this agent represent you as they cannot adequately represent and  protect your interests as a Buyer. Please seek out your own agent - a Buyer’s Agent. This agent will do thorough research on the property, comparative market evaluations and help you negotiate the best price. If you were getting divorced would you choose to work with the same lawyer as your future ex spouse? This is why it’s important that you work with the real estate agent who can function in the role of Buyer’s agent. Please feel free to reach out to me anytime to discuss this situation or any other real estate related question.