How much does it cost to sell a house? This is a question that many homeowners ask themselves when they are deciding whether or not to put their home on the market. The answer varies from state to state and even more so from city to city.
In Virginia, there are a lot of costs associated with selling a home. You may be surprised at just how expensive it can be! So to help you better understand what you should expect in terms of cost, we have created this blog post for you!
We will discuss all the different costs that need to be considered when looking into your options for selling your home in Virginia, as well as an overview of the anticipated expenses involved in this process.
Finally, we will give some additional information on who should cover these costs and when.
Does it Cost to Sell a House?
In most cases, the answer will be yes. There are some costs that are mandatory, such as the real estate commission. If you work with a broker, they will typically charge around six percent of the final sale price. There are also other fees that may be charged by your lender or other professionals involved in the process.
Then there are the costs that can be avoided if you’re willing to do some of the work yourself. For example, you can save on the real estate commission by selling your house yourself.
There are also costs like advertising and staging that you may be able to skip if you’re not too picky about how your home looks to potential buyers.
On the other hand, there are some costs that are unavoidable, like the transfer fees. These vary by state and county, but in Virginia, they typically run around $150.
You’ll also want to budget for closing costs, which are usually another percentage of the selling price (around one percent).
How Much Does it Cost to Sell a House?
Frankly, selling a house isn’t cheap. The average real estate agent commission hovers around 5% to 6%, depending on where you live. And if you factor in additional costs that are common in most sales, like repairs, closing costs, and relocating costs, your total expenses can come closer to 10% of the home’s sale price.
There can also be a substantial investment of your time as you wait for the right buyer to make an offer, qualify for a mortgage, and then close the deal.
So if we were to estimate these total expenses based on the sale price of $343,000 (the median price for a home in Virginia), you could end up paying $54,000 in total costs. The real estate commission will be most likely the biggest fee you will pay as a seller.
What are the Costs to Consider When Selling a House?
There are several listing costs to expect when selling a house in Virginia. Below we’ll break down the estimated costs of each so you can be better prepared when putting your house on the market.
Preparation Costs to Sell Your Home
When it comes to selling your house, you’ll want to make sure it’s market-ready so that potential buyers will be interested. There are four primary expenditures to keep in mind as you prepare your home.
- Staging Costs (~1% of Sale Price)
When potential purchasers arrive at your property for the first time, you want them to concentrate on the home’s best features while visualizing themselves living there. That’s where staging comes in handy. Staging refers to placing furniture and decorations to make a property as appealing as possible to prospective buyers.
The average cost to hire a professional stager in the United States, according to Fixr, is about $1,500. But it can range from $1,000- $3,000. You may save money staging your home if you do it yourself, but the downside is you’ll have to put in the time and effort.
Consider what you’ll need to purchase if you go the do-it-yourself route. It may include paint, new furniture or light fixtures, curtains, and decorative items, among other things. You might also want to invest in a deep cleaner for your carpets, which can cost between $35 and $50 per day, or hire a professional, which can cost $80 to $550, according to HomeAdvisor.
Staging may be worthwhile if you’re ready to sell. According to a survey from the National
Association of Realtors (NAR), 29% of sellers’ brokers noticed an increase in buyers’ bids from 1% to 5%. Staging increased the sellers’ home value by 6% to 10% for 21% of respondents.
>> Want to skip the hassle of listing, showings, and months of uncertainty? Learn how selling to Avante works.
- Landscaping Costs (~1%)
When it comes to selling your house, the outside of your home may be just as essential as the inside. The attractiveness of a property’s curb appeal may entice purchasers, particularly those who conduct house hunting online and rely on pictures for comparison. Landscape maintenance covers things like mulching, pruning shrubs, and planting flowers; standard lawn care covers weeding and fertilizing.
At the low-end, landscaping may cost as little as a few hundred dollars if you’re simply reseeding the lawn or improving your flower beds.
According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost of a more comprehensive service—flower beds, plants, trees, and so on—is $3,365. This will obviously be determined by the size of your yard and the amount of work that needs to be completed.
- Home Repairs and Maintenance (Varies)
Maintenance and repair concerns are some of the most common causes for a pending sale to fall through at closing. If you’re selling the traditional way, ensuring your home is in good condition before the listing can help you avoid making major concessions to the buyer when an offer is on the table.
As you prepare to sell, inspect your house for damaged features, broken appliances, and spaces that need to be cleaned or refreshed. A pre-inspection assessment might also help you figure out what needs to be repaired.
The overall cost of repairs will differ based on the state of your property. As you determine what needs to be repaired, think about what you can accomplish yourself and where professional assistance will be required. Make sure to get a couple of quotes before hiring anyone.
- Home Improvements (Varies)
Aside from maintenance, consider whether you want to make any modifications to the house, how much time and money you have available, and what kind of return on investment it will provide.
Kitchens are among the most important rooms for potential buyers. A modest renovation may cost you almost $21,200 on average. The upside is you’ll be able to recover some of the money spent on the project, but you’re spending time and effort if you do it yourself. Hiring experts may save time, but they may also be inconvenient or costly.
If you don’t have as much time or money to spend on a larger remodel, focus on smaller upgrades that add value. Instead of upgrading the entire kitchen, for example, you may work on renovating cabinet handles and adding a new backsplash in just one weekend. Both may catch the attention of a potential buyer and add some value.
Negotiating the Sale
After your property is ready to sell, you must wait for a buyer to make an offer. You can proceed into the next stage of the selling process after you’ve accepted an offer, which usually entails some back and forth negotiating between your agent and the buyer’s agent. There are also additional expenses to consider.
>> Find out the benefits of accepting a cash offer for your house.
- Real Estate Agent Commissions (~5% to ~6% of the Sale Price)
Real estate agents handle the selling legwork for you, such as arranging showings and open houses, paperwork, updating your property record, and organizing things like hiring a real estate photographer. You can save time by utilizing these services, but they aren’t free. According to Bankrate, sellers pay 5% to 6% of the sale price in commission costs on average. That means you’d spend $17,000 to $20,500 for a $343,000 home.
This commission is split between your listing agent and the buyer’s agent. If you’re selling to cash home buyers in Norfolk like Avante Home Buyers, there are no agent fees involved.
You may also sell your property FSBO without the assistance of an agent, although you are still responsible for paying a buyer’s agent fee if the buyer is represented by one. Assuming that’s half of the average rate predicted by Bankrate, you’d be paying 2.5% to 3%. Given that 87
percent of purchasers use an agent, according to the NAR, that fee is frequently unavoidable.
- Seller Concessions (~1.5% to 2%)
A concession means you’ve agreed to pay certain fees for the buyer, usually as a negotiating tool in order to entice them to complete the transaction. They could, for example, request that you assist with inspection expenses, processing fees, or other costs. In a seller’s market, buyers may request concessions if they do not have enough money to cover their closing costs or if the property is older and they want to save money for repairs. Buyers can also utilize concessions as a bargaining chip in a buyer’s market or to offset the expense of having to make a higher offer in a seller’s market.
The amount that a buyer may ask for is limited by the type of loan they have. Conventional loans that follow Fannie Mae standards allow for discounts of up to 3%, 6%, and 9%, depending on the buyer’s down payment size. According to The Mortgage Reports, concessions for FHA and VA loans, which are backed by the Federal Housing Administration and the Department of Veterans Affairs, respectively, are limited to 6% and 4%.
The cost of concessions will be influenced by the market you’re selling in. In Virginia, when purchasers ask for concessions, they typically request between 1.5 and 2% of the house sale value.
Finalizing the Deal
There are still a few expenses to consider as you near your closing date.
- Closing Costs (~1% to 3% of the sale price)
Closing costs are a mix of charges that are paid by both buyers and sellers at the conclusion of a real estate transaction. Sellers typically pay between 1% and 3% at closing, according to Realtor.com. If you want to sell your property for $343,000, you might spend anywhere from $3,430 to $10,300 in closing costs.
Closing costs are generally lower for the seller because there are fewer fees to pay. The closing fees, which are paid to the closing agent, include: property taxes, your attorney’s charge, recording charges, a transfer tax, and any fees connected with paying off your prior mortgage are the main expenses you’ll incur.
When you sell a home, you must pay transfer taxes if the title is transferred from one person to another. Transfer tax may be levied by the state, county, and municipal governments. The cost varies based on where the transaction occurs. Transfer taxes typically range from 0.01% to 5% of the sale price.
To declare a sale closed, you must first pay off your mortgage. Because the proceeds of the transaction are used to pay off your old loan, there may be a little gap if the settlement amount doesn’t include prorated interest. You may need to write a check to the lender to make up for the difference.
You may also have to pay a prepayment penalty if you pay off your loan early. Prepayment penalties are typically 2% to 4% of the total amount of your original loan, as reported by Realtor.com.
- Buyer’s Home Warranty (<1%)
While your home insurance typically covers the structural components of your house in the case of fire or certain natural disasters, a home warranty has a broader definition. Home warranties can cover repair and/or replacement costs for kitchen appliances, HVAC, as well as washer and dryer repairs and replacements.
When it’s time to sell your property, you may offer to buy a warranty for the house up until closing in order to reassure the buyer they won’t be responsible for repair costs after they sign. Alternatively, you could promise to pay for a year or two of coverage after closing.
A buyer’s warranty costs anywhere from $300 and $600. It’s a nice perk to offer buyers, but it’s not a requirement.
Relocate to Your New Home
You’ve probably paid for all of the expenses associated with selling your property by now. However, as you prepare to move into your new home, keep the following expenses in mind as well.
- Moving Costs (~1% to 2%)
You may move before the closing or after. Three factors that influence moving costs are:
- If you’re moving a short or long distance
- The number of household items you’re moving
- If you’re moving by yourself or hiring professional movers
Hiring expert movers have a lot of benefits. A full-service mover can pack your belongings, transport them to your new home, and unpack them for you. However, you’ll need to pay a fixed price or an hourly charge for that convenience.
The cost of professionally moving a three-bedroom house in your area may range from $760 to $1,000. Long-distance movers charge more for moves that involve big or bulky items, such as a piano or a swing set for your kids.
A DIY move is another option, but depending on the size of the truck and the distance traveled, renting a moving van may cost as little as $50 or more than $2,000. When you include in the rental fee and fuel expenses, a local move might be as little as a few hundred dollars. You’ll also need to budget for boxes, tape, and other packing materials.
If you have items that need to be discarded, you may have to pay for either a portable dumpster that can be taken away or a service that will carry those things away. Finally, you may have to put down a deposit for electricity, gas, water, and waste collection at your new property.
- Home Transition and Overlap Costs (~1%)
There is frequently a period of time between selling your present house and moving into a new one. If you’ve already closed on a new home, you may pay ownership costs for two properties at the same time. It can include mortgages, utility expenses, HOA fees, property taxes, and homeowners insurance.
If you haven’t closed on your new house yet or are still looking for the ideal one, you’ll need to budget for temporary housing. You’ll also be responsible for storing your furniture and other goods until you can settle down permanently. According to Move.org, the typical monthly cost of self-storage varies from about $100 to almost $300, depending on the unit’s size. Keep in mind that in this case, you’ll have to relocate twice, which is both time-consuming and costly.
One of the advantages of selling to Avante Home Buyers is we give you control of your moving timeline so you can avoid these housing overlap costs.
There are often more expenses when selling a house than just real estate agent fees—10% of the sale price is a good place to start. Take time to crunch the numbers of each of the charges mentioned here individually, assuming they apply to your circumstances.
The more accurately you’re able to estimate the total amount you’ll pay, the less room there is for surprises.
More importantly, you’ll have a better idea of how much you stand to walk away with, and therefore, how much you can put towards your next home.
The cost of selling a house is dependent on the market, what you are trying to sell it for and how quickly. The size of your home, location, condition and other factors also impact its final price.
If you’re looking for ways to save money on your home sale, you’ll want to consider selling to one of the companies that buy houses in Virginia.
Avante Home Buyers can offer a custom solution tailored specifically for sellers like yourself who want cash fast without any hassle or delays; we can provide many benefits not offered by traditional real estate agents.
This “Buy my house Virginia Beach” home buyer can save you money on realtor commissions and closing costs, and they will buy your home as-is! No expensive repairs or improvements are required.