Dual agency real estate is a situation in which one agent represents both the buyer and seller in the transaction. It may sound sensible, but in fact is very problematic. Your real estate agent is supposed to be on your side during the transaction, but dual agents are required by law to be neutral. Dual agents often mislead buyers and sellers as to the nature of dual agency for their own purposes. They may convince you it saves a little money on agent fees, only to have you lose much more money during the transaction. There are seven US states in which dual agency is illegal.
- Buyers and sellers have different needs and the agent cannot serve both of them at the same time.
- A dual agency cannot give you advice because they have to remain a neutral third party.
- A dual agency gets double the real estate commission on a sale, so they will try to make you think there is nothing wrong with this practice.
“Have you heard of dual agency and never knew what it meant? It’s when one real estate agent represents both a seller and buyer in the same sale. It may sound like a good idea, but it’s something you should avoid.”