Getting Started 4 min read Oct 03, 2019

What Does Selling Your Home Really Cost?

Making the call to sell is a big decision. There are tons of factors to consider when thinking about doing it. Is it the best time? should you get a realtor? And what will selling your home cost, truly? These are all questions we know our readers think about. This post is aimed to help educate anyone considering putting their property on the market about all the costs (some of which can be cleverly hidden) that a homeowner needs to think about before selling their home.

The first factor is making sure your home is in top shape so it can sell at the best price. Sellers are most interested in making the most money off of their house that they can, so there are a few core tasks that homeowners need to go through to prepare to put their house on the market.

Home inspection ($400-$1,000)

If there is a problem with our house, you want to know about it before a prospective buyer does. This is the argument for getting a pre-home inspection. This is optional, but a core piece of the puzzle if you want to make sure you know all the areas of your house that needs improving.

Getting a pre-listing home inspection also allows you to more easily price your home, with data to back it up. This helps eliminate negotiations and generally just makes the selling process a little more predictable.

Of course, there is a cost associated with getting a pre-listing home inspection. It costs anywhere from $400 to $1,000, and in the end, you could find it might not be worth it. If you want peace of mind and more negotiating of mind and more negotiating power, it is probably worth the cost.

Staging costs ($2,000)

When selling a home, you want to put your best foot forward for prospective buyers. This is where staging comes into the equation. Staging means having someone come into your home to decorate and organize it so it looks more attractive to potential buyers.

Professional stagers usually run to at least $2,000, but there is an option to go the DIY route. With a little carpet cleaning, furniture rearranging and re-organizing, you might be able to accomplish a lot. With that said, not hiring a professional stager might come back and cost you more in the long run—o unless you have experience with staging, we’d suggest going and getting it done professionally.

Home improvement (varies)

There’s going to be tons of areas where you need to improve your home. It might be landscaping your backyard or getting a deep clean on your carpets. If there are any stains, broken appliances, or defects in the house that are fixable, this is the time to get to work and correct the blemishes. This also might be a good time to be opportunistic and do a remodel on that less-than-ideal kitchen. According to Homeadvisor, the average cost for remodeling a kitchen is just under $24,000. Consider curb appeal, too—it can make a big difference in how potential buyers view your home.

The cost to this ranges immensely, but getting your home in top shape for a potential buyer is a crucial task in the journey. The state of your home will greatly affect the sale price.

Closing costs

Closing costs are the last hurdle to get the deal over the fence before a sale is complete. They are supposed to be covered by the buyer, but as part of a negotiation tactic they could be passed on to the seller. Closing costs include title fees, lender fees, transfer taxes, homeowners association fees, etc.

Real estate agent (6%)

Once your home is ready to be put on the market, congrats! Now you need to figure out a vehicle to sell your home. The most common course of action currently is hiring a real estate agent. Although their value is diminishing in the wake of technology-powered solutions, real estate agents are still the most popular way to sell a home. Unfortunately, real estate agents commissions take an average of 6% off of the sale. For a $300,000 house, that’s $18,000!

Newer alternatives like Homeworthy are competing with the real estate agent model, allowing sellers to list their house for just 1% of the eventual sale. This saves the sellers thousands which they can allocate for other parts of the sale. Try out Homeworthy today to get started.

Other fees that may apply

Title insurance ($1,000 — $4,000)

Sellers pay this in case issues in the home occur after the closing of the sale. This costs in the range of $1,000-$4,000.

HOA fees (Varies)

If you have an HOA in your neighborhood, you’ll have to pay the remainder of your fees for the year, all before your home closes.

Paying off a mortgage (varies)

If you’re still paying off your mortgage, you’ll need to bake the remainder into the cost of selling your house as well.

Post-sale

Once the house is closed, the last expected cost is going through the process of moving all your stuff out of the house. Depending on how big the house is, this can cost thousands of dollars. If you’re moving to a new state, it will be even more expensive. Keep this in mind and budget it in as you go through the process of selling your home.

So, what does it cost to sell your home?

As you can tell, the final price tag varies immensely based on how much improvement you need to do on your home, if you use a real estate agent or not, and what the rest of the closing costs come out to. Just make sure you do your research before you go through with a sale. Understand the taxes and the fees involved with selling your home in your specific state. And if you want to save some money in the process, try out Homeworthy to save 5% on commission fees.

This post was written by:
Author image

Homeworthy

  • Vancouver, WA
We're on a mission to make the home sale simple & affordable.