Home Buying in Bayou Oaks>Question Details

Juliane_Stru…, Home Buyer in Sarasota, FL

How can I make sure that a buyer's agent is not representing the seller at the same time ? Thanks a lot !

Asked by Juliane_Struvce, Sarasota, FL Sat Nov 16, 2013

Help the community by answering this question:


All you need to do is tell the agent you want that type of relationship . Then ask the agent to prepare a single agent broker relationship form that you both will sign.

Here is a web link that explains the different brokerage relationships in Florida.

Tammy Hayes, Realtor
Re/Max Palm Realty
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 17, 2013
Thank you for your informative answers. What puzzles me is that both agents are paid by the seller. For the seller's agent that makes a lot of sense to negotiate the highest possible price. But the buyer's agent must negotiate a price that the buyer can pay, and seems to get punished if he negotiates a price that is lower and which then reduces his share. Or am I misunderstanding the mechanics of these transactions ?
Flag Sat Nov 23, 2013
These answers were all very helpful and made me aware of formal regulations and different types of relationships between brokers and clients, thank you all.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 23, 2013
I serve as a Director on the Board of the Sarasota Association of Realtors. Ethics training is a focal point for our Board. We have many committees that meet on a regular basis snuffing out the agents that violate our rule of conduct.

In the State of Florida you are able to request an exclusive Buyer agent agreement. If the property of interest to you is listed by the same agent you have a Buyer agreement with they cannot represent you in the transaction. Easy fix, only see properties not listed by your agents broker, hire an attorney once you have selected a property to work exclusively for you, or be open to a transaction broker relationship where your buyers agent is not representing you or the Seller. I like to think of this as the agent is representing the house and the best way to present it to get it sold i.e. disclosing all the facts they know of the property, the location and any other facts that are important to you as a buyer.

Overall you should have a very good experience if you link yourself to the right agent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 12, 2013
If you don't know already than that agent has not done their job. Up front agents are required to deliver the Consumer Information Statement to clients. Just simply ask the agent his agency relationship with you. Buyers agent= just buyer, sellers agent= just seller, disclosed dual agent= representing both sides.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 21, 2013
As of July 1, 2008 Florida real estate agents do not have to disclose the relationship. All agents are considered transaction brokers unless they sign a single agent relationship form with a buyer or seller.
Flag Thu Nov 21, 2013
As everyone has mentioned, just ask. Let us know if we can help.

Jen and Mark Bowman
Keller Williams on the Water
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 21, 2013
Hi there
in Florida we are Transaction Brokers so honestly sometimes you do not know and in some VERY RARE cases this occurs
Suggestions then:

1st I would suggest not calling up just listing agents to show you the home like some people only do, Never understood this but when I hear horror stories about agents not working for me, most have to say is that they just called up an agent or listing agent and bought the home and did not even think
2. Use a Buyer's agent, you do not use any doctor, lawyer , Indian chief ,so do not use any real estate agent, there has to be people you know, that you trust that are agents, so use them for they will work for you, if this person is also the listing agent then depending on your relationship then good to move forward
3. KNOW the contract, know what you are signing, your deadline dates, inspection period, etc..... do not just rely on an agent to tell you everything because some do not, as an agent for 13 years, trust me some agents, and I stress the word SOME just do not know the contract and think real estate is just a fun job and do not actually know what the specific verbiage in the contract says
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 19, 2013
They MUST disclose and have you sign a agency disclosure prior to showing you a home. You can simply ask. If you are a buyer, hire your own buyer agent to make sure they are looking out for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 18, 2013
#1 Ask them
#2. Whose sign is in the yard?
#3. If you are working with a REALTOR (R) they are obligated to disclose.
#4. If the home being sold is owned by a REALTOR (r) that fact must be disclosed.

Be aware, there ARE situations where working directly with the listing agent is a good idea.
However, your question does not reveal the situation of the real estate.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 18, 2013

You have gotten some very good answers on this board.

When you are searching for an agent, make sure that you feel comfortable with the agent you are working with. Many brokerages represent buyers and sellers. However, this doesn't mean that an agent represents a buyer and seller in the same transaction. If an agent chooses to show you one of their listings, they must let you know that it is in fact their listing.

As some of the other agents have already mentioned, simply ask the agent you choose to work with.

If you have any other questions, feel free to shoot me an email or give me a call!

Andy Richardson
Suncoasteam Realty
Office: 941-235-7474
Direct: 941-276-5997
Email: car@suncoasteam.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 17, 2013
ASK. It is not secret information. The agents have to tell you. In Florida every agent is a transaction broker. If they are selling you a property where they are representing both the buyer and seller by law they must disclose that to both sides.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 17, 2013
Ask them. Representation must be disclosed. Don't reveal anything you don't want the seller to know until you do.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
The agent has to disclose representation. If your agent is the listing agent of the property you are considering, then you have reason to question the relationship, Such a situation would trigger Dual agency, and by law all parties would have to agree to it. This is how it is in NY
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
In Florida there are 4 types of brokerage representation -- 1 is typically applicable to commercial, the other 3 are transaction broker, single agent and no brokerage relationship.

The transaction broker provides limited representation. Single agent representation is when an agent has a fiduciary relationship with either the buyer or seller, the agent can't represent both parties to a transaction. A listing agent (and others in their office) cannot provide single agent representation to a buyer for their listings.

So you are looking for a buyer's agent that will work for you in a single agency capacity.

Keep in mind though that agents are typically compensated at closing from the seller, even if your agent is acting as single representation for you. If you want to make sure you have your agent's undivided loyalty you could agree that you the buyer will provide your agent's compensation in the purchase transaction.

Most buyers feel comfortable with the single agency representation if they have concerns such as yours.


Diane Christner
Realty Executives Solutions941-726-7109
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
I would simply just ask the agent you are dealing with if he/she is also the property's listing agent.

Let me know if I can be of any more help.

Else Wille
Exit King Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
Earlier studies that surveyed buyers of real estate found that the buyers typically believed that the real estate licensee represented the buyers instead of the sellers. This false conclusion was often reinforced by the words and actions of real estate licensees who would refer to buyer-customers as their "clients" and treat the buyers as if fiduciary duties were owed to them. This would often create an implied agency, resulting in a serious violation of the license law known as an undisclosed dual agency. This prompted most state legislatures to enact laws known as an undisclosed dual agency. This prompted most state legislatures to enact laws to better define the licensee's role with buyers as well as sellers. The Florida legislature and the real estate industry have worked together to define brokerage relationships and disclosure requirements as they apply to real estate dealings.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
Usually, an agent is required to disclose such things up front. You could ask the agent.

Also, if the property is listed by someone else or with a different broker than the buyer's agent you are referring to, you can rest assured that the other agent isn't representing the seller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 16, 2013
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