Don't rely on agent's choice for loan, title services

In slow market, buyer's best interest may be compromised

Real estate agents are clearly the most influential persons in every real estate transaction and their power is not reserved for buyers and sellers — it extends to all professionals involved.

That position of influence becomes magnified in a slower housing market. Everybody is desperate for deals. And, while Realtors typically offer beneficial referrals, consumers should always remember that they have a choice when picking the various players in the home-buying process — appraisal, credit report, title report, escrow company, mortgage company, etc.