Liz brings up a good point - in California the buyer and seller can be in a dual agency relationship, even if each has their own agent, if both agents work for the same broker. Without getting too far into details, all California real estate transactions go through brokers, not agents. Agents simply act as representatives of their broker in the process of serving their clients. For this reason, I always recommend that buyers and sellers use agents from completely different offices.
Some will argue that as long as each party has their own agent they are properly represented. It doesn't matter - if both agents work for the same broker dual agency exists and must be disclosed. Others have stated the risks involved in dual agency. My recommendation is to never use two agents from the same office on the same transaction - it's dual agency.
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However, it is common to have separate agents representing a buyer and seller who are under the same broker (Frank Howard Allen). This is also considered duel agency. The difference between th two is that both parties have an agent whose sole best interest is their client. A broker will always disclose to both buyer and seller that there is still duel agency because both agents are under the same broker. The most important issue is that both the,buyer and seller still have two different agents representing them.
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A listing agent represents the sellers best interest. A buyers agent resprenents a the buyers best interests. Although it is perfectly legal
for an agent to represent both sides.
You must be very comfortable with
your agent to represent both sides
with honestly and loyalty .
While in escrow issues may and usually arise. Is your agent going to be capable of negationing best deal for you? Feel free to call me directly at 415-233-3235 if you have any other questions.
The first thing to do is hire someone you trust. How much experience do they have? Are they a local agent that knows the area? How many transactions have they done? Do they have references? If after acquiring this information and if you feel comfortable with the agent, then I would move forward.
Bradley Real Estate