TALK TO THE SELLER DIRECTLY
Realtors are very good at taking care of a lot of details in the home buying process. Those details are important and without your realtor doing the work, you would be lost for sure. But there is a downside to this hand holding experience.
Your realtor doesn't merely run interference with the title company and make sure inspections occur and the appraiser has acces to the house you are buying. Your realtor also serves as an intermediary between you and the seller. This situation is not ideal and leads to lots of miscommunication. Some of that miscommunication is accidental and sometimes, that miscommunication is on purpose.
In a case I had in Houston, a home buyer read the Sellers' Disclosure Notice and saw where the seller had written in the margin (not where it shouldl have been) a comment that read "1 foot in the floodplain". This note was next to the checkbox for "Present Flood Insurance Coverage" and aboe the "Located in 100 Year Floodplain". The seller had checked the "Present Flood Insurance Coverage" but not the "Located in the 100 Year Floodlplain". So the home buyer had a question. This is where the hand holding and realtor interaction becomes realtor interference.
The buyer asked his realtor to explain the note. The buyer's realtor contacted the seller's realtor and the seller's realtor answered the question. She didn't contact the sellers and then answer the question, she answered it. And she answered it wrong. She stated that the note meant that "1 foot" the garage itself was located in the 100 year floodplain. The garage was 3 feet lower than the house so this did not seem remarkable. The buyers's agent relayed the information back to the buyer and they accepted the answer as a reasonable explanation of what the note meant.
Were they ever wrong! The note did explain that a portion of the garage was in the flood plain but what was not conveyed because the buyer and seller never talked was whether any water got into the house. The buyer's agent only asked one question. Had the seller and buyer spoken together directly by phone or in person, they could have had an exchange of information rather than a single question with a single answer.
The truth about the house was that the sellers house had been flooded with over 4 feet of water during a massive flood. A flood so devastating the sellers were rescued from their home in a boat. Would the home buyer have discovered this fact if he had talked directly to the seller? There is no way to know for sure. But common sense tells you that a direct discussion without two layers of hearsay would be far better than a question submitted by the buyer's agent.
So ask to speak directly to the seller. If the seller doesn't want to speak to you that is a red flag. Good luck. You need it.