What Are and Who Pays the Cost of Closing

Real Estate Agent with Solid Source Realty

What Are and Who Pays the Cost of Closing


You've saved up your down payment and found the perfect home. You think you've got everything handled brilliantly. Then comes the monkey wrench to the works. You start to learn of more and more expenses you didn't know were involved. To make it more confusing, not all these expenses are yours, some are the sellers. Before you find yourself short on cash, it's good to learn all the costs of a home sale and who has to pay each item.

The types of closing on a home purchase are normally similar around the country, but the actual costs will vary from area to area. If you're borrowing money and have a mortgage, the costs will vary from lender to lender, so shopping around for the best rate and the lowest closing costs. Many of the costs are negotiated between the buyer and seller before the closing.


Sellers Costs

Realtor Cost

A good real estate agent can be worth their weight in gold. Luckily, a seller doesn't have to pay that much. The amount the seller pays depends on the contract with the agent and how much commission they charge. The commission is a percentage of the price of the home.

Real Estate Taxes


The allocation of property tax is based on the amount of time the seller lived at the property and the time the buyer will live there. The area where you live determines whether the taxes are paid in advance or arrears and that will make the difference who pays.

Title Insurance for the Buyer—Sometimes.

This guarantees the purchaser is getting a clean title. The payer of this varies from state to state. Sometimes there are two policies with the buyer paying one for the bank and seller buying one for the buyer. Some states require a property survey.

Transfer taxes

These are based on the county or local government and are the cost of transferring the title of the property.

Home warranty premiums---If negotiated


Buyers Costs at Closing

Property Appraisal

While this is required if you have a lender, it's also a good idea if you happen to be lucky enough to pay cash, but it's not mandatory. It can run as high as $500.

Attorney Fees

Not all states require an attorney at closing.

Credit Report Fee

This is a cost if you're getting a mortgage. It can be as high as $30

Survey and/or Title Insurance

See above in sellers cost section.

Title Search

The price varies on this. It is a search to insure the seller has the right to sell and there's no property liens.


Property Tax

The buyer may have to pay a portion. See the sellers section.

Closing Fee

This can be as much as .2% of the purchase price plus $250

Courier Fee for Transporting Documents

These run $30+.

Home Inspection and Termite Inspection

The home inspection can run as much as $450 while the termite or infestation inspection cost approximate $125-$200

Recording Fees

This varies by location and is the cost of recording the transaction.

Homeowner's Insurance

The price varies by the area, type of home, cost of home and coverage.

Escrow Deposits for Insurance and Property Taxes

This is only if your lending institution is paying both mortgage and taxes from an escrow account in the future.

Mortgage-Related Fees

Processing fees, underwriting fees, discount points and underwriting fees are all part of the cost of securing a mortgage. Your lender should let you know the costs of this before you choose to borrow from them. Shop around and find the best terms you can.


Cliff Johnson

Solid Source Realty



Posted by

Cliff J , Real Estate Agent in Stone Mountain Georgia, Certified First Time Home Buyer




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Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Cliff, great post to give buyers and sellers the expected costs doing a real estate transaction.

Oct 16, 2016 01:36 AM #1
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Cliff Johnson

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