When you ask the listing agent on a property, “Why are they selling?” a good agent will tell you that s/he represents the seller and therefore is entrusted to keep that information confidential. An excellent agent will go one step further and ask if you are currently represented (and what that means if you’re unsure). An amazing agent will ask if you are working with a REALTOR® already and if not, would you like a consultation.
Bonus Tip: by law, material latent defects DO have to be disclosed by the homeowner (or his agent) to a purchaser, ideally prior to an offer being submitted. The listing contract used by REALTORS® in Alberta directly addresses the issue of known material latent defects, with the seller of the property.
As always, contact me if you have any questions.