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The Guide to Dual Agency in Real Estate

When buying or selling a home it is critical to know how agency law works in your state. Typically a buyer will have a representative known as a buyer's agent and a seller will have theirs, known as a seller's agent.


  1. Quite often both buyers and sellers ask a real estate agent what is dual agency? In ever state real estate agents are required to explain how dual agency works when buying and selling a home.
  2. Dual agency is when a single real estate agent represents both the buyer and the seller in the same sale. As a real estate agent who has been selling homes for over thirty years, I will tell you that dual agency is the worst law ever put in place for consumers. When a real estate agent becomes a dual agent they become a neutral party in the transaction.
  3. So what does this mean for you in the real world as a buyer or seller? It means the agent who was once your advocate and in your corner no longer is! If you are buying a home the agent is not allowed to offer advice on price. They cannot tell you what you should offer on a home you are interested in.
  4. If you are selling a home the agent is also not allowed to give you pricing advice. What this means is when the buyer makes an offer they cannot advise you what to do. They cannot suggest a counter offer.
  5. One important additional factor you should know about dual agency is that many real estate agents will try to convince you there is no issue with it. Agents that say this are thinking about one thing - either their purse or wallet. Dual agency is an opportunity to "double side" a deal or get paid double. Many real estate agents who care more about money than they do about their clients will say dual agency is perfectly legal.
  6. The thing is there are lots of things that are completely legal but that are also MORONIC. Dual agency is one of them. In the article below you will see one of the most detailed articles on why you want to avoid dual agency as a buyer or seller.
  7. You want to make sure your agent exclusively represents you as either your buyer's agent or seller's agent. There is no benefit for a buyer or seller to accept dual agency.
  8. Dual agency actually has been banned in many states for the exact reasons I have mentioned above. Dual agency should be illegal everywhere but it is not. In the article below you will see some really transparent comments from real estate agents about dual agency.
  9. You will notice two camps when it comes to dual agency. Some real estate agents clearly believe there is nothing wrong with it. There is another that says it does nothing to serve the interests of the public and just serves the real estate agent. You already know where I stand on dual agency.
  10. Take a look at the article. You will get a sense of why so many people can't stand the greed that exists among some real estate agents.
  11. Clearly from reading many of the comments in the above article lots of real estate agents have no idea what they can and cannot do when they become a dual agent. Many do not realize they cannot advise and counsel a buyer or seller. The agent instead does whatever it takes to close the sale.
  12. Below you will find another article that explains how dual agency works in real estate. You should understand that in some states dual agency can be when two agents from the same company each represent a buyer and seller in the same sale. In Massachusetts and other states this is what's known as designated agency.
  13. I have no problem with designated agency as each party has a representative in the transaction. This is vastly different than single agent dual agency where the agent becomes a neutral party. They are night and day from one another.
  14. Many real estate agents are not clear on what you can and cannot do when you become a dual agent. To further complicate matters agents get confused between the differences of dual agency and designated agency. When buying or selling a home you need to understand agency law! See this article at RIS Media that covers the difference between dual and designated agency.
  15. More useful advice on dual agency found at Behance. Don't become a dual agency puppet!
  16. See another article on what is dual agency and how does it work at AgentLinkus.
  17. Learn about dual agency on Pinterest and pin it to your boards so buyers and sellers can learn how they can easily get scammed.
  18. What is a dual agent in real estate sales? A dual agent represents neither the buyer or the seller exclusively. Essentially both the buyer and seller are waiving their right to have someone in their corner. The consumer loses their right to have a representative fighting for their best interests. This is why dual agency does not make sense for consumers.