I never have, and never will, sign an exclusive agreement with a realtor.
A friend went to Denver, CO interviewed a job wanting to look at a few homes as basis for relocation. He contacted 4 agents 3 wanted to sign an agent of representation as condition for showing homes. That is 75%.
The way you described sounds like they already sensed you are not so sure what you want. In business contract that is often the case people want to buy a business but they are not so sure what they ended up. I suggest that you research on your own and then look for a realtor to write the purchase contract. Almost 90% people here search and look on their own first.
As for me, I listened and asked have you been preapproved? If not here is a contact or two for lenders. Want showing, lets me see the letter.
Go to the area in which you are interested. Look for listings in those areas that interest you. Call the realtors that have those listings and set up showing appointments to see their listings. Tell them you are a buyer without a realtor. At the showing interview them. Ask them a series of questions that will give you the information you need to make a decision on choosing a realtor. How long has he or she been a realtor in that particular area? How do they find their listings? What type of market analysis do they typically do to determine the sales price? Do they work with investors like you who want X, Y, and Z? Do they have investor references? Can they set up an automated search for you?
Tell them you want to contact multiple agents to find the ideal property and you therefore do not want an exclusive representation. Show them that you are prepared to buy. You have the bank approval for your financing.
If they find that unacceptable, move on. There will be an agent who knows what you are looking for and who will agree to your terms.