"Plus, I'd really prefer to do most of the work of finding my home myself... and the idea of paying someone $6000+ for the few things I really could use a Realtor for... just doesn't appeal to me. $500 or $1000 per hour is not a reasonable fee for what I'm looking for. "The bottom line on this is that the seller has already agreed to pay a certain percentage of commission that is to be split between the selling Realtor and the listing Realtor, so that commission is being paid not matter what. You aren't paying the $6000 and it will be paid to someone whether it be the listing Realtor who is representing both sides of the transaction or a buyer's agent that you hire to represent you. There are horror stories out there for buyers and sellers in every different scenario. There are Realtors who can fairly represent both sides of the transaction and there are Realtors who are grossly incompetent and couldn't represent themselves fairly in their own transaction. It does make sense to use a Realtor for representation when buying or selling a house, but it makes equal sense to really go out there and interview the Realtors to find one who you can trust and who is qualified in the market you are looking in. Just because they have a license doesn't automatically mean they are qualified to meet your specific needs.