I own a Real Estate and Mortgage company. Your testimony is very valuable for buyers to know. It costs money and has risk to find a home. Most of the time, buyers use agents. My advice is to find the best Professional possible. That choice can be worth tens of thousands to you. Do not think all agents are generic, most are not knowledgeable or useful. Make sure the agent cares about you and not just getting a commission. Most consumers accept the first agent who shows up. Dig deep, be tough on your selection process.
The second point is to support the agent you select. The process is complex. Maybe not as simple as buyers think. Be partners, not adversaries.
If you want to discuss agent selection criteria, please email Pierce@KLOZ.me, a San Francisco Full Service Brokerage.