Our home sale calculator provides an estimate of how much money you’ll walk away with (your net profit) after selling your house — but you should only use this tool to get a rough estimate of your net proceeds.
Local real estate agents are your best resource for an accurate home sale estimate — whether you’re trying to figure out a fair asking price, or your total home sale proceeds. Realtors are the most reliable source of information because they:
- Have access to local sales data
- Know how to price homes competitively in your market
- Understand the common costs facing sellers
Note: To use our home sale calculator, you’ll need at least a ballpark idea of how much your home is worth. Talking to a realtor is the best way to get an accurate number.
Home sale calculator
How this calculator works
You can adjust the numbers in our home sale calculator based on variables like:
- Your estimated sale price
- Additional selling costs (like moving)
- Realtor commission
Use our other calculators to drill down on specific costs for selling👇
How to calculate your home sale proceeds
- Estimate your home sale price
- Subtract your mortgage balance
- Subtract closing costs
- Subtract capital gains taxes
- You’re done!
1. Estimate your home’s expected sale price
You can use popular online tools like Zillow or Redfin to estimate your home’s current value — as long as you’re aware of their inaccuracies.
Estimates from sites like Redfin and Zillow might be a good starting place, but you can usually get a more accurate estimate from a realtor.
Most realtors offer a free comparative market analysis (CMA) in an attempt to earn your business — but there’s no obligation to proceed if the agent doesn’t feel like the right fit.
2. Subtract your mortgage balance
If you have a mortgage, you’ll have to pay off your remaining mortgage balance when you sell your home. This money is taken out of the proceeds of the sale and paid directly to your lender.
Look at your latest mortgage statement to see how much you owe.
When you’re ready to sell and pay off your mortgage, contact your lender to find out if there are any other fees associated with an early payout.
3. Subtract seller closing costs
Nationally, costs paid by the seller before closing average 0.9% of the home sale price, BUT these costs vary widely by state. For example, seller closing costs are as high as 4.7% in Delaware but as low as 0.5% in Hawaii.
Your total closing costs can also go up or down based on what’s negotiated with the buyer. For instance, if you’re in a really hot market, the buyer might have to take on more of the closing costs to beat out other buyers.
On the flip side, if you own a home that’s difficult to sell because it’s in disrepair, or you’re in a market where homes aren’t selling quickly, your realtor or the buyer might suggest that you pick up more of the closing costs to make the deal more attractive.
4. Subtract capital gains taxes (if any)
You probably won’t have to pay any capital gains taxes when you sell if you’ve owned your home for more than two years.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) taxes the profit of a home sale at the same rate as your income, but the Section 121 exclusion means:
- The first $250,000 is exempt if you’ve owned the home for more than two years.
- The first $500,000 is exempt if you’ve owned the home for more than two years AND are filing jointly with your spouse.
Speak to a tax professional to make sure you won’t be on the hook for a big tax bill when you sell your house.
5. You’re done! (kind of)
Once you have all of these numbers, plug them into our calculator to come up with your estimated net proceeds. Even though we think this tool can be helpful, the ACTUAL net profit from your home is likely to be different than our estimate.
The best number you can get is from a local realtor — they know the market, understand typical closing costs in your area, and will be able to factor intangibles like recent renos and repairs into your sale price.
Remember: even though the numbers from a realtor are usually MORE accurate than online calculators, the final net proceeds could change after you list (if you drop the listing price or get an offer above asking) AND when your home goes under contract (as you’re negotiating with the buyer).
Whether you’re serious about selling or just exploring options, your next step is to consult a local agent. Talk to a few local agents until you find the best one for your home sale.
Breaking down the cost of selling a house
Real estate agents typically charge 5-6% of the sale price to sell your home. Commission is usually split between the:
- Buyer’s agent (1.5%)
- Buyer’s broker (1.5%)
- Listing agent (1.5%)
- Listing agent’s broker (1.5%)
*Assumes a total 6% commission a 50/50 split between each agent and their broker.
In other words, when $18,000 (6%) is deducted from your $300,000 home sale at closing, your agent only walks away with about a quarter of it (roughly $4,500, in this scenario).
We can help you save on commission while still connecting you with a top-rated local agent — giving you full service without the full price tag.
Seller closing costs range from 1-3% of the final sale price. Some of these costs can be negotiated, but typically seller closing costs include:
- Prorated property taxes — The remaining portion of property taxes that you owe in the calendar year may be due at the time of the sale.
- Title fees — Fees for changing the ownership on the property’s title.
- Transfer taxes — Taxes that some counties/municipalities charge for transferring ownership of a residential property.
Closing cost calculator
Capital gains taxes
A capital gain occurs when you make a profit on the sale of your home.
Use our capital gains calculator to figure out what your gain might be. The total tax on the gain depends on your marginal tax rate, and whether or not you qualify for the $250,000 or $500,000 exemption based on two years or more of residency. (see above)
We’re not tax professionals, but we recommend speaking with one if you have any questions about your particular tax situation!
Capital gains calculator
If you sell your home and still owe money on a mortgage, you’ll have to pay it off with your home sale proceeds.
This means if your home sells for $400,000, but you still owe $50,000 on your mortgage, $50,000 will be deducted from your sale proceeds to pay off your mortgage lender.
You can contact your lender to find out if there are any extra fees for paying off your mortgage early, and what the steps are. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, lenders are usually required to respond to these requests within seven business days.
Mortgage payoff calculator
Ways to maximize your home sale profit
Get a lower commission rate
Most people pay 5-6% commission (2.5-3% per side) without realizing that realtor commissions can be negotiated. As a home seller, it’s difficult to negotiate buyer’s agent commission — there’s usually a standard rate in your area that sellers offer — but you can negotiate with your listing agent.
Local agents might not agree to reduce their listing fee for you, but a reduction of even 1% could save you thousands of dollars.
We pre-negotiate a reduced commission with top agents from well-known brokerages like Keller Williams, RE/MAX, and EXp. You’ll pay just 1.5% — in comparison to the 2-3% that listing agents typically charge.
Don’t sell before 2 years
You should wait to sell until you’ve owned your home for at least two years, if possible. Life circumstances might force you to sell, but selling before the two-year mark will result in a steep capital gains tax that could eat into your profits.
Thanks to the IRS’s Section 121 exemption, it’s unlikely that you’ll have to pay any capital gains taxes. The exemption makes that first $250,000 gain tax free, or the first $500,000 if you’re married and filing jointly.
Build more equity in your home
You’ll net more money from your home sale by continuing to pay off your mortgage. That’s because the more of your debt that you pay off, the more of the home you actually own — a concept called “equity”.
Home equity represents the dollar amount of how much of your home you actually own once your current mortgage balance is factored out.
Home equity = Current home value – current mortgage balance
For example, if Susan’s house is currently worth $350k and she’s got $100k left on her mortgage, her equity in the home is $250k.
Focus on high-ROI renos
Small improvements can make a big difference — not just to your final sale price, but also to your selling time. If there are several similar houses for sale in your neighborhood, yours will be more attractive to buyers if it’s in the best shape.
A local realtor can advise you on the highest return on investment (ROI) repairs/upgrades based on local market selling times and what buyers are looking for.
Data from Remodeling Magazine’s 2022 Cost vs. Value report shows some of the highest ROI renovations and repairs nationwide. Interestingly, these upgrades allow you to recoup MOST of your investment, but none actually increase your overall net proceeds.
Highest ROI home repairs (national averages)
|Return on investment
|Garage door replacement
|Manufactured stone vaneer
|Minor kitchen remodel
|Siding replacement - fibre cement
|Siding replacement - vinyl
Don’t sell on your own!
For Sale By Owner (FSBO) sales are sometimes attractive to homeowners because there’s a chance you won’t have to pay any realtor commission — and sometimes it works in hot seller’s markets. However, there are a few common problems with selling FSBO:
- FSBO homes sell for less, on average: FSBO homes sell for anywhere from 5.5–26% less than agent-represented homes.*
- Buyers expect a discount: If someone sees a FSBO sign in your yard, they’re likely to expect a discount since there’s no professional representation. It’s kind of like buying something on Craigslist versus buying it brand new at a retail store.
- You’ll probably still have to offer buyer’s agent commission: Agents have been known to avoid FSBO sales because they want to make sure they get paid when their clients buy a home. To encourage agents to bring buyers, you’ll probably have to offer 2–3% commission, so you aren’t really going to avoid realtor commissions completely.
- You might outprice yourself: Unless you’re a real estate expert, you might not know the true value of your home. If you price it too low, you’ll leave thousands of dollars on the table. If you price it too high, it might sit on the market for months, costing you a lot of time and money.
- There’s no one in your corner to negotiate: Realtors know what contingencies to include in a contract, how to respond to a buyer’s demands, and how to protect your best interests before closing day. Without an expert negotiator to back you up, you might miss important details and end up making less than you were hoping to when your home sells.
*Data from Collateral Analytics and the National Association of Realtors.
How do you calculate profit on a home sale?
To calculate the potential profit on a home sale:
- Estimate the home's sale price using a calculator, or speak to an agent.
- Subtract common expenses like closing costs and realtor fees.
- Subtract the remaining balance of your mortgage.
- The final number is your net profit.
Use our home sale calculator to get started!
How much comes out of the sale of a house?
On average, roughly 8% comes out of the sale of a house when you include:
- Realtor commissions
- Closing costs
If you still have to pay off the remaining balance of your mortgage, a lot more money could be taken out of your sale proceeds. Learn how to calculate your net proceeds.
- Internal Revenue Service. ‘Topic No. 701: Sale of Your Home.’ Jan. 24, 2022. https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc701
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. ‘Know Your Rights: Your Mortgage Servicer Must Comply with Federal Rules.’ Sept. 2020. https://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/documents/cfpb_know_your_rights_mortgage_servicer_comply_federal_rules_handout.pdf
- Remodeling Magazine. ‘2022 Cost vs. Value Report.’ https://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2022/
- Collateral Analytics. ‘Saving Real Estate Commissions at any Price.’ Aug. 17, 2017. https://collateralanalytics.com/saving-real-estate-commissions-at-any-price/
- National Association of Realtors. ‘Highlights from the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.’ Nov. 11, 2021. https://www.nar.realtor/research-and-statistics/research-reports/highlights-from-the-profile-of-home-buyers-and-sellers
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