A buyer’s agent is a licensed real estate agent that is representing only the purchaser(s) in a real estate transaction. They are in place to look out for the best interest of their purchaser(s), find them a home that suits all of their needs, write up a purchase agreement when they have found the home of their dreams, and assist them through the entire home buying process, including the closing.
A dual agent can assist in the same fashion; however, they also have the seller’s best interest at heart as well as the buyer’s. This can become a sticky situation because at the same time that they are trying to get the seller the best price for their home, they should also be making sure the buyer is getting the best and lowest or most fair price possible. A dual agent is obligated to treat both parties in an equal and fair manner; however, this is sometimes overlooked. A dual agent is also receiving commission from both ends of the transaction and in a certain sense; one has to think that they also have their own financial interest at heart as well.
With that said, it is usually in a buyer’s best interest to have a real estate agent that is representing only them throughout the home buying transaction; this holds especially true for a first-time home buyer that is learning through the process and needs the undivided attention of their real estate agent. There is really no advantage for a buyer to choose a dual agent; the only advantage goes to the agent because they will make money from both sides of the transaction.
Some buyers are under the impression that going to the listing agent will save them money in the long run; however, in most states, in particularly New Jersey, it is standard practice that the buyer’s agent is paid by the seller. Therefore, the buyer does not need to worry about an agent’s commission coming out of their own pocket. Yet another reason to choose strictly a buyer’s agent versus a dual agent.
The benefits for a prospective home buyer of going with a real estate agent that will represent only them, through the transaction, are numerous. A buyer’s agent will assist the purchaser’s through the transaction from viewing the home through the closing of the home. The buyer’s agent will use their expertise and knowledge of certain neighborhoods to find exactly what the purchaser is looking for and be able to inform them of certain trends in that market area. They always have the buyer’s best interest in mind and have the negotiating power to be sure the buyer is getting the best deal possible