Buying and selling a home is often the biggest financial transaction of your entire life, and there’s so much more to the overall cost than the asking price. It’s important to understand ALL of the costs associated with the transaction, whether you’re on the buying or selling end of it.
Many people do not understand what they are actually paying for. You are sitting at the closing table sipping your coffee and reviewing the closing statement with your attorney before you sign it and you encounter so many different line items. Let’s talk the ones that will cost you the most.
On the selling side, besides your Realtors commission fee, your next largest cost may be the property taxes. Many counties send tax bills in arrears, which means the bill for 2018 will be mailed and due in 2019. You will no longer own the property in 2019 when the bill comes out but you will give a prorated amount as a credit to the buyers at the closing. This will release you free and clear of the tax liability on the property.
You will also be charged title insurance and title company charges. Some of those title charges could be title search charges along with recording fees to your local county along with local, county, and state transfer stamp taxes. Those fees are sometimes based upon the purchase price of the property and can vary. The sellers are also usually responsible for providing the buyers a survey for the property.
On the buyer’s side, a majority of your fees will be paid at the closing but there may be some that you pay before the closing. This could include the mortgage company’s appraisal charge if a bank is involved in the transaction. Some cities will require the buyers to pay for the transfer stamps as well, so it is good to know the guidelines for the city before starting your search, since this fee can sometimes be thousands of dollars. Buyers will also be responsible for sharing in the title company charges with the sellers, including paying for courier fees and environmental protection endorsements.
One charge that neither side will be able to avoid most likely will be attorney’s fees. These fees can vary from attorney to attorney depending on the types of services they are providing for you before, during and after the closing. It is always important to remember to not just choose any attorney, but an attorney who is experienced in the category of property you are purchasing.