Hi Rvalere. Okay, right up front. . .I'm going to try to word this so that I don't get nasty emails from fellow agents or consumers - just trying to "explain" our situation.
You've had some really great agents respond to you and although I didn't study all the responses, I don't think any of them is willing to say what I am about to say. We try to avoid controversy on these Q&A websites while offering general guidelines about the do's and don'ts of real estate. I have seen other consumers say things like "why do these agents skirt around answering the question". The reason is that sometimes to answer a specific question like this one is putting our license in jeopardy and quite frankly, against the law.
I hope that none of my fellow agents think that I am pointing fingers because that is not what I am trying to accomplish with this post. Most of the time when I see questions like this I simply click past them - it's just too dangerous to bother responding and I get it that consumers think we are not being helpful when we don't give specific advise. But, we really cannot.
Agents are only supposed to "advise" people whom they represent. If you have no signed agreement with an agent, no one is representing you. If you ask a question on a site like Trulia that is specific and relates to a transaction, how will you determine whether or not to heed the advise you are so freely given?
I see many agents responding here who have done exactly what we should do in this situation - offer general tips on arriving at the answer. To give you a number is foolhardy and unprofessional.
If you are this unsure about what you are doing perhaps it is a good sign that you need to be represented by your own buyer agent. Talk to friends, co-workers and relatives to find out if they can recommend an agent to you.
Acting on the this type of specific advise that you receive from someone on the internet is worth exactly what it cost you.