In some cases, fees can account for 10 percent of the sale of the home. While many of these charges are negotiable and can fluctuate depending on the current real estate market, sellers should plan on paying at least some of these expenses.
Understanding the costs of selling your home can help prevent sticker shock when it comes time to close the sale.
The real estate commission is often the largest cost to selling your home. In many cases, these commissions can total 5 percent to 6 percent of the sale cost. Therefore, a house that sells for $250,000 could end up costing an additional $15,000 in commission fees.
The commission fee is split between the seller’s agent and the buyer’s agent. Many homeowners are attempting to skip these high fees altogether by going the sell-it-yourself route, but if you take this approach be prepared to assume the Realtor’s responsibilities.
These can include negotiations, hiring a contract lawyer and taking care of the transfer of title.
If you’re thinking about selling your home, chances are there are a few repairs that can boost the appeal of your home and even raise its value. Now is the time to make changes to things you've been putting off like painting a bedroom, repairing a staircase or fixing a leaky faucet. Additonally, if you’re paying for repairs or upgrades with a credit card, be sure you’re getting cash back or rewards.
You may spend several hundred dollars on cosmetic fixes on your home. Additionally, if the buyer’s home inspection reveals any major problems, you might be responsible for paying to fix them as well.
Major repairs could be a financial setback therefore it’s important to be prepared for them before you choose to sell. Especially if you anticipate a problem with your home passing the inspection.
Buyers like to have a clear picture of what the home will look like with their items in it. If your home is currently vacant or your possessions are outdated, consider hiring a professional stager. They can, undoubtedly, arrange furniture and accessories to suit any potential buyer.
A 2015 National Association of Realtors study revealed that the median cost for staging was $675.
If planning to move out before you sell your home, continue to pay for your heat and electricity. A home without heat and lighting can be very difficult to show to buyers. Your current utility bills can give you, undoubtedly, an idea how much this will cost.
The proceeds of your home will be used to pay off your mortgage, but it is likely that the number on your mortgage statement might be a little less than what you owe.
You’ll likely have to add prorated interest you’ve accrued to the total balance. Additionally, your lender may penalize you for paying early if you have a prepayment penalty associated with your mortgage.
While the closing cost to sell a house is typically the responsibility of the buyer, in a buyer's market (one which has an influx of homes for sale) the seller may be asked to foot the bill.
Some of these costs may include HOA (or homeowners association) fees, property taxes, attorney fees, transfer taxes and title insurance. You also may be asked to pay an escrow fee, a brokerage fee and a courier fee. Altogether, closing costs can range from 2 percent to 4 percent of the selling price.
Many of the above fees are negotiable, and it is unlikely that a seller will be responsible for all of these. Still, it helps to be prepared. Knowing how much it will cost to sell a house can help you avoid disappointment when the time comes to put it on the market.