What is a buyers agent?
Every person is entitled to their own representation. A buyer’s agent is an agent who works with buyers, not sellers. The listing agent’s first responsibility is with the seller. If you use the same agent, it is considered dual agency. In other words, that agent will represent both sides. Some question whether an agent can represent both sides fairly. Consider a lawyer representing both sides in a court room. It could be a conflict of interest. Most buyer’s agents do not cost the buyer a commission since most are paid by the seller. You are not required to use the listing agent to see any house. It is almost always to your advantage and will almost never cost you anything to have your own agent. This is a buyers agent. It is a form of representation-any agent can act as one. To take it a step further, you could look for an exclusive buyers agent. They specialize in buyers and do not represent sellers at all.
What is a sellers agent?
The Listing Agent is the Seller’s Representative
That means the listing agent has a legal obligation to work on the seller’s behalf—to get the highest possible price and the best terms available for the seller, not the buyer.
Listing Agents Wear Many Hats
There are many facets to a listing agent’s job. They work closely with the seller and provide a bevy of services. Here is a sample of what most listing agents do for each seller client:
- Create a marketing plan for the house
- Have professional photos taken of the house
- Advise the seller about the best ways to stage the house for sale
- Generate Comparative Market Analysis reports to suggest the best selling price
- Recommend contractors and vendors to help prepare the home for market
- Evangelize the benefits of the house and neighborhood to potential buyers
- Coordinate showings with buyer agents and unrepresented buyers
- Host “Broker Opens” to get as many potential buyer agents into the house for feedback and to attract buyers
- Make the house easily accessible for showings
- Provide showing feedback
- Communicate market activity to the seller with weekly updates/reports
- Present and advise sellers of all offers
- Negotiate the highest possible selling price
- Coordinate the purchase process with inspectors, attorneys, appraisers, title company agents and others
- Verify buyer eligibility to purchase
- Make the home selling process as easy for the seller as possible
The listing agent is the homeowner’s biggest advocate.