Should I just call the agent whose name is on the sign? Isn't the listing agent the best person to help me buy a house?
If you call the agent on the sign, they work for the seller, and if they also work with you they would become a "dual agent." They may know details about the house, but a dual agent certainly cannot represent the same way as a buyer's agent.
Here is why:
A dual agent is one who represents both the buyer and the seller in a real estate transaction. If you want to purchase a property and contact the listing agent to show the property, or to write an offer, that agent must act in a neutral capacity, per Ohio law. A dual agent cannot openly advocate for or against either party.
A dual agent becomes a "facilitator" instead of an advocate.
What does this mean for you? The choice in representation is yours to make. Real estate transactions can become tricky, and you have the right to your own representation for the transaction. Choose a buyer's agent that is properly credentialed and experienced to represent you.
What about when you sell your home. Do you want your agent to potentially represent both parties? You can ask your agent to only represent you in the transaction. Just as when you make a purchase, selling can become tricky, and you will likely come across a point of discussion where you need an advocate.
Keep in mind that dual agency is legal in the State of Ohio, and it can be practiced ethically and successfully, but the representation you hire is your choice as the consumer.
Whether you are looking to buy, sell, or if you aren't sure where to begin, please call our team at Flag City REALTORS®. We are invested in you.