If you are in a position to pay cash and you do not want to have monthly payments, I would definitely do that.
Most people do not have the cash to buy a house, they also feel that since the interest rates are so low that they would rather hold onto their cash.
The prices are no longer going down in this area, they are actually moving up. The houses are selling quickly and selling well.
If you are in a position to buy now it is a very good time.
Using an agent really does not having anything to do with whether or not you pay cash or finance. Agents can negotiate a good price on the houses and also can help you with neighborhoods, inspections and many other things that you need to know to purchase a house.
Please let me know if I can be of help to you with purchasing.