Trust is the first foundation to be looked at, without that the agent and client are spinning their wheels. The agent has been in the trenches everyday. Viewing hundreds of homes and writing countless numbers of offers. If you are serious about purchasing a new home please listen to your agent's thoughts. Let them gather information and present it, to help you decide on the offers. Myself and many other Realtors have experienced that offers at listing prices just won't be accepted. In this market buyers need to give it their best shot from the beginning. Preapproval or better yet full loan commitment to be presented with the offer. A fair offering price is what is needed these days. The inventory is very low, many homes have 6-12 offers. REO properties can have as many as 60. Your agent has a goal to find a home you will be happy in for many years, negotiate the best possible price and terms for you. Keeping you well informed and having a pulse on the ever changing marketplace is vital.
A relationship built on trust is just as important as the foundation your home is built on. You trust your Realtor to guide you on that issue. Try trusting them on knowing the market they work in day after day.