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A limited agent, also known as a dual agent, works for both buyers and sellers in real estate transactions. The job duties of the limited agent include helping sellers to set prices on properties, finding properties for buyers to purchase, and negotiating between buyers and sellers. Aside from the fact that a limited agent works for both the buyer and seller, the job description is similar to that of any other real estate agent. Once a property has been decided upon, the paperwork must be completed so that the deed or title is transferred to the new owner.
This job entails helping sellers determine the right price for the property they are selling. A limited agent helps property owners come up with this number by researching property prices in the area, looking at any special characteristics of the property, and consulting with other appraisal professionals. A dual agent often begins by representing the seller, and then ends up representing the buyer if he or she does not have a real estate agent.
Limited agents also find properties for a buyer to purchase. This means spending time working out of the office, looking at various properties and creating listings. Once the buyer tells the agent what he or she is looking for, the agent can show the buyer various properties. A limited agent often shows properties to the buyer that the agent is representing with the sellers. This means that the agent must have good knowledge of the properties that he or she is in charge of selling.
Once a property has been found, it is the job of the limited agent to negotiate a price between the buyer and seller, which includes such things as closing costs and move-in dates. Other legal paperwork must be taken care of, such as the transfer of deeds and titles to the new owner. In addition, the agent acts as the main line of communication between the buyer and seller during the process.
In some parts of the world it is not considered ethical to work as a limited agent, because of the conflict of interest that occurs when representing competing parties in a real estate deal. Since the seller is attempting to make a profit off of the property, the limited agent has to try to sell the property at the highest possible price. The agent is also representing the buyer, who is trying to buy property at the lowest possible price. It can be difficult for the agent to represent both parties successfully without creating an unethical situation.