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How Much Does It Cost to Sell a Home?

You Can Pay Commissions, Closing Costs, Taxes, and More

When you sell a home, you might pay between 10% and 15% of the purchase price for repairs, real estate agent commissions, closing costs, taxes, and more. That means it might cost you between $30,000 and $45,000 to sell a home for $300,000. While the cost to sell a home varies depending on various factors, market conditions and your specific situation, here is a breakdown of sales expenses:

Do You Pay Real Estate Commissions When You Sell a House?

Yes. You’ll pay 5% to 6% of the home’s purchase price in real estate commissions. The seller typically pays the full cost of these commissions, even though the money is usually shared between the seller’s and buyer’s agents.

You may be able to save money on real estate commissions if you choose to sell your home without a real estate agent. You are likely to save just half the cost of the commission, however. That’s because you’ll be expected to pay the buyer’s agent commission even when you sell your own home.

Do You Pay Closing Costs When You Sell a House?

Yes. You’ll pay closing costs when you sell a home. The amount you pay depends on many different factors, including whether you need to pay real estate transfer taxes (see the next section). Typical closing costs when you sell a home include:

  • Prorated property taxes. You are typically required to pay property taxes, prorated for the portion of the year you owned the home.
  • Prorated HOA fees. You are typically required to pay HOA fees, prorated for the portion of the year you owned the home, when you are part of a homeowner’s association.
  • Title transfer fee. This fee covers the costs of your local municipality transferring the title to the buyer.
  • Title insurance. This insurance protects the buyer from problems with the title after the sale closes.
  • Escrow fees. You may need to pay a fee to the company that manages transfers of funds during closing.
  • Attorney fees. Many states require that you be represented by an attorney at closing.
  • Home warranty. Home warranties insure buyers against the cost of repairs for appliances, heating and cooling systems, plumbing, and electrical systems. Sellers sometimes include a home warranty in the sales agreement.

Depending on the terms of your agreement with the buyer, you may also be required to pay for some of their closing costs. Sellers may agree to pay closing costs for buyers to persuade them to purchase their home.

Do You Pay Real Estate Transfer Taxes When You Sell a House?

Some local and state governments charge significant real estate transfer taxes. Other local and state governments charge low taxes or no taxes at all. Research the real estate transfer taxes that apply to your home and make sure you understand the costs. Your real estate agent can help you understand which taxes may apply to you too.

Do You Pay Off Your Mortgage When You Sell a House?

Yes. If you have a mortgage on your home, you will need to pay off the loan with a portion of the money you get from selling the home. Include the payoff amount as well as any fees that may be required when you are estimating how much money you will get from selling your home.

Do You Need to Pay for Repairs When You Sell a House?

It’s easier to sell a home when it is "move in ready"—that is when you make major repairs and updates to your home before you put it on the market. Depending on the condition of your home, it may make sense to make these repairs. Homes that need repairs often take longer to sell and usually sell for less money. To get a sense of how much you might pay to update your home, see our article on how much home renovations cost.

Are There Other Costs to Selling a House?

Your agent might recommend you get professional photographs taken of your home. Most people begin their search for a new home online. Good photographs can help you attract more buyers. Your agent might also recommend staging your home so it shows well to buyers. Both might increase your costs.

Should You Include Moving Costs in Your Home Sale Expenses?

It’s a good idea to include moving costs in your budget because this is an expense you will have to pay. These costs can vary widely depending on how many possessions you have, how far you are moving, and more. Check out our moving tips checklist.

For more information, check out our homeseller toolkit.

Last reviewed and updated January 2024 by Freedom Mortgage.

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