In my opinion, it would be wise to be sure that you have a clearly defined understanding of the agents obligations and responsibilities to you as a Buyer before committing to a signed contract that may extend for months.  Obviously it would be prudent to ascertain if the agent is a full time agent or a part time agent?   How long have they been in the business?  How many homes do they sell a year?  How well do they know the market area in which you are considering buying a home?  What specifically are they going to do for you in securing the Buyers Agency contract?  Are they going to pre-screen the inventory?  Are they going to view all the homes that you are considering with you?  Will they point out obvious, and more important not so obvious, issues with the home and area which directly affect property values?  Personally i do not think that it is inappropriate for a Buyer to get this commitment of responsibilities and understanding in writing from the agent.  This protects the Buyer, as these contracts are in fact with the agents Broker and if the agent is not fulfilling the commitment as outlined the Buyer may get the Buyer Agency contract negated by the Broker.

FYI on a personal note, in 467 transactions that i have successfully completed, i have only once asked a buyer to sign a BRA.  This was only because i felt a bit tenuous about this particlar buyer’s loyalty to me and our common goal.  ;-)

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