What Is the Cost to Sell a House? | Mares Mortgage

What Is the Cost to Sell a House?

A real estate agent holding a “SOLD” sign

When the time comes to sell your home and start anew, you’re probably looking into how much it will cost to sell it. Many people don’t realize how much you have to spend to sell a home until they try!

So don’t get a nasty surprise at the closing table—learn about the average costs to expect when selling your home.

How Much Will It Cost to Sell My Home?

You can expect to spend around 15% of the sale price when selling your home. That number might seem high, but it includes everything from real estate agent commissions to moving fees and closing costs.

For example, if you can sell your home for $250,000, you can expect to spend around $37,000 to pay for various expenses.

However, these costs vary for everyone selling a house, and you might not need to spend on each expense.

Staying with the $250,000 home example, your costs to sell it might look like this:

  • $15,000 for real estate agent commissions
  • $10-12,000 for major home repairs
  • $7-8,000 for closing costs
  • $1,000 for home staging
  • $1,000 for moving expenses
  • $500 for a home inspection

Remember, these costs are estimates of what you might expect to pay when selling your home. We’ll break down each category to give you a better idea of what they will cost in your home-selling situation.

What’s next after selling your home? We can make getting into your dream home simple—click here to see how!

Commissions For Real Estate Agents

Your most significant expense when selling your house will likely be the commission fee of the real estate agents who help you find a buyer and help your buyer find you.

The typical commission is around 6% of the sale price, which is then split between your agent and the buyer’s agent. So a $250,000 sale will cost around $15,000 in commission fees.

Even though this can seem expensive, working with an agent to sell your home is usually worth it—they know real estate, your area, and how to get you the best deal throughout the selling process. In addition, they bring with them a solid marketing plan and will help prepare your home to show to buyers.

They can also help you sell your home for more!

Home Repairs Costs

A couple painting their home before selling

You’ll likely make some major home repairs before selling your home to make it more attractive to buyers and raise its overall value. Plus, some necessary repairs may become apparent after a home inspection.

If your house is relatively new, you might not have to worry about home repair costs. If it’s older than a couple of years, though, it’ll likely need some work.

Your spending could be anywhere from a few hundred to upwards of $20,000, depending on what repairs you have to make! 

The majority of home sellers make at least some improvements before listing their houses, whether it’s making major repairs, improving the landscaping, updating bathrooms and kitchens, adding a fresh coat of paint, replacing the flooring, or anything else.

Closing Costs

When selling your home, you’ll also have to pay closing costs—typically up to 3% of the amount you sell it for—to close the deal. These costs include paying a title insurance company, taxes, title transfer fees, and possibly an attorney.

Sometimes, sellers also try to sweeten the deal for the buyer by offering to pay some or all of their closing costs; this is called seller concession.

Staging Fees

You’ll likely also pay your real estate agent a staging fee, setting you back a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. A staging helps attract buyers by making your home look like a space that they would want to call their own by making some small updates.

Staging costs can include paying for a cleaning service, renting modern furniture, updating kitchen cabinets, applying a new coat of paint, installing better lighting, etc.

However, your real estate agent may cover these costs if they include staging in their marketing services—be sure to find out when hiring an agent!

Home Inspection Costs

Home inspections aren’t a significant part of the house-selling costs you face, but they can cost up to $500. These inspections can uncover electrical, plumbing, HVAC, roof, and foundation problems so you can fix them before selling the house.

And while the home buyer usually pays to have a home inspection performed, we recommend having one done before listing your house to fix any problems ahead of time. You don’t want necessary repairs causing your buyer to change their mind or slow down the closing process.

Your Remaining Mortgage Balance 

If you have a mortgage on your house, you’ll also have to pay the remaining balance when it’s time to close. Hopefully, the cash you make from selling is more than enough to cover this balance.

Typically, you’ll have been paying on it for years and have a lower remaining balance than your home is worth. For example, if you end up selling your home for $250,000 but only have a remaining balance of $100,000 and spend $35,000 on selling costs, you’re left with $115,000—a decent amount to use as a down payment for your new home!

However, if you’re upside down on your mortgage—you owe more than its value—you should probably refrain from selling. In addition to not being able to pay off the balance, you would also have to pay all of these selling costs out of pocket.

Are You Ready to Sell?

 A woman holding a “HOME FOR SALE” sign

If you are, you’re likely wondering if there are ways to save on the costs associated with selling a house.

The best way to reduce the selling costs we discussed is by taking up some DIY projects around your home! If you can paint the walls, dress up the landscaping, install new fixtures, or make repairs yourself, you can save on the majority of the costs listed above.

Good luck!

When you’re ready to buy your new home after selling, remember that we’re here to help you get the best mortgage for your dream home.

Let us get you the loan for your dream home. Whether you’re buying or refinancing, we can help.

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