My recommendations for you:
Normally the buyer does not pay for the services of a Realtor as your personal representative, therefore it makes sense to have professional representation because the seller has the professional representation.
If the purchase of a property was simple then anyone could do it. The fact is that there are distinct advantages to having competent representation.
Do you want to pay more the than property is worth?
Do you want to have terms imposed on you that are not fair?
Do you want to have access to all the protections offered to buyer by law?
Then the smartest thing to do would be to interview a couple of Realtors and select one to represent your interests and help you find the right home, for the right price, for the best terms.
Here are some examples of where a great Realtor can help you?
1. Do you know if the property is priced correctly? A Realtor will.
2. Do you know that interest rates are probably going up in March? A Realtor should know market conditions, and can help you work with a lender so you pay the lowest rate possible.
3. Do you know that you need to be in escrow by April 30th to take advantage of the first time home buyer Federal income tax credit of up to $8,000?
4. 75-80% of homes are priced higher than market value. How do you know?
Find a great Realtor. If you'd like a referral to a top Realtor who works with buyers like you in your area let me know.