For most of us buying a home or property is the biggest single investment we're likely to make and we're likely to do it maybe once or twice in a lifetime. The process is, by nature, filled with checks and balances with many complex details. Traditionally, agents were legally obligated to protect the interests of the home seller. Today more homebuyers are choosing to have their own real estate agent, known as a buyer's agent, to legally represent them.
A buyer's agent represents you, the buyer, not the seller, and has full fiduciary duties, including loyalty to you. By definition, the buyer's agent has your best interests in mind throughout the transaction. The benefits of buyer representation is the dedication of the buyer's agent to the home buyer. The agent and homebuyer establish a mutual agreement, known as a buyer agency agreement, that will entitle the homebuyer to, but not limited by:
Loyalty: The real estate agent must act in the best interest of the buyer.
Disclosure: All material facts such as relationships between agent and other parties, existence of other offers, status of earnest money, seller's financial condition, property's true worth, commission split with other brokers, and legal effect of important contract provisions.
Confidentiality: Any discussions, facts, or information that should not be revealed to others but does not include responsibility of fairness and honesty in dealings with all parties.
Reasonable Skill & Care: Arriving at a reasonable purchase price and advising the buyer of such, affirmatively discovering material facts and disclosing them to the buyer, investigating the material facts related to the sale.
With a buyer agency, the interests of the homebuyer will be represented in the purchase of the home. This scenario is different from a typical transaction where the buyer is not technically represented.