The cost to sell a house varies by market, but typically ranges from between 7.59% to 8.59% or more of a home’s final sale price.
That means it costs sellers at least $26,000 to sell a home priced at $349,816 (the average U.S. home value).
Now for some good news: You can save money on your major home sale costs by shopping around and doing some upfront research.
- Free agent-matching services like Clever Real Estate pre-negotiate lower listing commission rates for you (sellers save $9,600 in fees, on average.)
- You can shop around to save on certain closing costs, like owner’s title insurance.
- Many variable costs, like home staging and repairs, may not be necessary.
How much does it cost to sell a house?
|Fee Type||Average Fee||Average Cost|
|Other costs||1% – 2%||$3,441 – $6,883|
|Total costs||7.59% – 8.59%||$26,120 – $29,562|
Nationwide, we estimate that sellers typically pay at least 7.59% in a home sale, but the total rate can exceed 8% depending on variable and optional costs.
In the above example, it costs close to $30,000 on the high end to sell a home priced at $349,816.
Your actual home sale costs depend on a number of factors, including:
- Typical real estate agent commission rates in your market. Rates may be higher or lower depending on what’s normal in your area.
- Your success in negotiating rates with a listing agent. Not all sellers will have success negotiating a lower rate.
- If you use an agent-matching service to find a realtor. These services provide sellers with built-in commission savings.
- If variable or optional costs are necessary, like home staging, repairs, and moving expenses.
- If your home sale contract requires you to pay buyer incentives, like closing costs or a home warranty.
Here’s how the costs break down.
1. Real estate agent commission: 5.37%
Realtor commission is usually the single largest cost in a home sale.
Realtor fees vary widely by state, ranging from as low as 4.91% to as high as 6%, with an average national cost of 5.37%, according to our data.
Based on the average home value nationwide ($349,816), the typical home seller pays close to $19,000 in real estate agent commission in a traditional home sale involving two full-time agents.
|Commission rate||Commission amount|
The fee covers both the seller’s agent and the buyer’s agent.
Home sellers are usually on the hook for covering the buyer’s agent commission, to compensate the agent for bringing a ready, willing, and able buyer to the table.
Realtor commission is deducted from the home’s final sale price at closing, and is often split evenly between the agents.
Can’t I just sell a house without an agent?
You can avoid paying a listing agent commission by selling without a realtor. So you could potentially save close to $12,000 in fees on a typical U.S. home sale.
However, FSBO-homes sell for 26% less than agent-listed homes, and a lower sale price negates any potential commission savings by selling without a realtor.
You’re also responsible for handling all of the tasks normally handled by a realtor – which could take up weeks, or even months, of your valuable time. It’s like giving yourself a very stressful second job!
We highly recommend speaking with a real estate attorney, realtor, or broker for more guidance, especially regarding your legal responsibilities and requirements as a seller.
2. Closing costs: 1.1%
Other home selling costs typically add another 1.1% or more to a home’s sale price.
Based on the average home value nationwide, the typical home seller pays $3,807 in closing costs.
However, like realtor commission, closing costs vary widely by area. You may pay more or less than the average closing cost rate, depending mainly on where you live.
Here are some common seller closing costs.
Transfer taxes and recording fees
Also referred to as stamp tax, deed stamps, and real property transfer tax, this fee is imposed by your state, city, or county. It’s paid before the new deed is recorded.
Transfer taxes cost an average of 0.44% nationwide or $1,538 on the average home sale.
The actual fee amount is based on your home’s tax assessed value and what your state or city charges.
These fees are charged by your local government to legally record your deed and other legal documents relating to your home sale.
Recording fees cost $121 on average nationwide.
Prorated property taxes
Sellers are often required to pay property taxes due up to the date of closing.
Taxes are prorated between the seller and buyer. Each party pays tax on the number of days they’ve own the house in the calendar year.
Your fee depends on your annual tax amount, and how many days lived in the house up until your sale date.
For example, let’s say your taxes are $5,000 per year and you sell your home on January 31:
- It costs $13.70 per day in taxes ($5,000 divided by 365 days).
- You’ll owe taxes on the first 31 days of the year ($425).
- The new owner pays taxes on the remaining 334 days ($4,575).
Prorated property tax example ($5,000)
|Days in house||Seller prorated tax||Buyer prorated tax|
Ask your realtor, attorney, or title company for more information on what you owe in prorated taxes.
Homeowners association (HOA) fees
You may owe several HOA fees if your home is located within an HOA community. Here’s why:
- Sellers are usually responsible for covering a prorated portion of membership dues at closing. The cost could range from $100 to $1,000 or more, depending on the amount of your HOA dues and when you sell.
- Some HOA communities may also charge an HOA transfer fee ($200–$300) to move home ownership records from you to the buyer at closing.
However, the buyer may be responsible for paying part of all of these costs in some markets. Or the fee may be negotiable in the sales contract.
Contact your realtor, attorney, or HOA for more information on seller HOA fees, and who is responsible for paying them at closing.
Owner’s title insurance
Title insurance may or may not be a required cost, depending on your state.
It protects you and the buyer against any potential problems related to your deed or property ownership, and can offer protection in case issues arise during your home sale (or after it closes).
Nationwide, title insurance costs home sellers $1,071 on average.
However, the cost of owner’s title insurance varies widely, from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Actual costs depend on your location, the insurance provider, and the price of your home.
Real estate attorney fees
You may owe this fee if your state requires closings to be performed by an attorney, or if you choose to hire a realtor.
Real estate closing attorneys either charge a flat fee (typically $800 to $1,500) or an hourly rate ($150 to $400 per hour). Attorneys perform a wide range of legal services, including:
- Reviewing all of your contracts and legal documents for accuracy.
- Advising you on issues that may come up during the sale, like buyer-requested repairs, and what happens with earnest money if a buyer backs out of the contract.
- Recording, filing, and verifying legal documents to make your sale official.
Real estate laws and fees vary widely by state. Check with your realtor to see if an attorney is required to handle closing, if it’s worth hiring one, and how much it might cost you.
3. Other potential costs: 1% to 2%
There are several other expenses that could add thousands more to your home sale costs.
This is the process of preparing your home for potential buyers by cleaning, organizing, and rearranging furniture.
It costs an average of $1,608 nationwide to stage a home, but varies between $745 to $2,659, according to HomeAdvisor.
Costs depend on factors like your market, the size and number of rooms furnished, and how much furniture needs to be rented.
Is it worth the cost? 82% of buyer’s agents said staging made it easier for their buyer clients to visualize the property as a future home, according to a National Association of Realtors report.
However, home staging isn’t necessary for every home seller. The decision likely depends on the condition and layout of your home, your budget, and other market-specific factors.
Deep cleaning is the process of hiring a professional to thoroughly clean and remove any of a home’s dirt, grime, and scum.
The average cost to deep clean a house averages $300 and ranges between $200 to $400 nationwide, according to HomeAdvisor. However, some companies may charge by the hour ($25 to $50) vs. a flat fee.
Factors impacting total cost include the size of your home, the number of rooms cleaned, the level of dirt build-up, and if you require add-on services, like carpet and rug cleaning.
Home repairs and improvements
You may or may not need to make home repairs or cosmetic home improvements before listing.
Actual costs depend highly on your situation. If your home is in poor condition and your goal is to sell for top dollar, you’ll probably need to spend more to get it listing ready.
However, if your home just needs a few cosmetic repairs to improve its curb appeal – like some paint or landscaping – you can probably keep your costs below $1,000.
This fee refers to the buyer’s closing costs and expenses that are negotiated into a purchase and sale agreement, before an offer is accepted.
Here are some common seller concessions to watch out for.
1. Buyer’s closing costs
Buyers and sellers usually just pay their own closing costs. In some cases, a buyer may request you to cover part or all of their costs (2% to 5% of the home’s sale price) to keep their out-of-pocket costs down.
You might agree to do this if an offer has all of the criteria you’re looking for, and if your home attracts first-time home buyers on a tight budget.
2. Buyer’s home warranty
Some home buyers – especially first-timers – ask sellers to pay for a home warranty. It’s a one-year service contract that protects buyers against the high cost of unexpected repairs.
A home warranty costs just over $1,000, but ranges from between $219 to $1,841 nationwide, according to HomeAdvisor. Prices depend mainly on coverage leves, and if any add-on services are included.
3. Repair credits
If a buyer has a home inspection contingency and discovers major issues during their inspection, the buyer may request money at closing in lieu of repairs.
However, repair credits are more common in a buyer’s market. In a strong seller’s market, many buyers avoid asking for repair credits, or waive an inspection altogether.
It costs $1,639 to hire professional movers for a short-distance move (under 100 miles), according to HomeAdvisor.
However, your moving or relocation costs could be much higher for long-distance moves. HomeAdvisor estimates an average cost of $4,703 for a cross-country move, and up to $10,000 for larger homes.
Actual costs depend on the size and number of trucks required, how much your stuff weighs, and if you hire a full-service company or rent a truck.
Mortgage prepayment penalty or payoff fee
Some lenders charge borrowers a prepayment penalty or payoff fee for paying off your loan in full early – usually within the first three to five years of loan origination.
Prepayment penalties usually start out at 2% of the outstanding loan balance if you repay your loan in its first year, but fall in each consecutive year.
Read the fine print in your loan documents carefully – the prepayment penalty should be clearly stated.
Ask your lender for a mortgage payoff quote to see what you might owe, or call them to get more information.
Capital gains taxes
You may or may not owe capital gains tax on your home sale. It depends on factors like your total profit, your time living in the home, and if you file your taxes as single or with a spouse.
Most sellers do not owe any capital gains tax thanks to the IRS tax break. Sellers may qualify to exclude up to $250,000 in home sale profit ($500,000 for married couples) by meeting certain criteria.
Speak with a tax professional for further guidance on capital gains tax.
Cost to sell a house calculator
Use our calculator below to estimate how much it may cost you to sell your house. It includes real estate agent commissions, typical closing costs, outstanding mortgages, and a few other potential costs.
Note: Our calculator’s figures are based on national averages. You may end up paying more or less in fees on your actual home sale.
To get a more accurate estimated net proceeds from your home sale, find a local realtor for a free seller’s net sheet.
3 ways to save money when selling a house
The single biggest way to save on your home sale is to reduce commission costs. Shedding just .50% off a commission rate can save you thousands. Here’s how to do it.
1. Shop around and negotiate with agents
You can shop around to find a realtor that charges a lower fee, as some realtors are more flexible on price than others.
But it’s probably not the best idea to choose an agent just because they offer a lower fee. Consider each agent’s experience, skills, and customer reviews in your decision-making process.
» Next steps: Read our guide on how to choose a realtor for more advice.
2. Use an agent matching service
Many home sellers don’t have the time or experience required to negotiate lower rates with realtors.
Thankfully, several agent matching services take care of this for you. Companies like Clever match up sellers with top local realtors, while also pre-negotiating lower fees.
For example, Clever agents charge a 1% listing fee on homes over $350,000, compared to the national average listing fee of 2.72%.
3. Sell without an agent
You can also choose not to sell with a realtor at all, to avoid paying listing agent commission entirely.
But not having a real estate professional in your corner is risky. For one, FSBO homes sell for up to 26% less than agent-listed homes, according to the National Association of Realtors.
It can also take weeks (or even months) of work to get your home sold. In some ways, it’s like having a stressful second job – and one that might not end up paying you anything.
Next steps: Still set on FSBO? Consider hiring a flat-fee MLS service to get your home listed on the multiple listing service (MLS) to reach the maximum number of buyers.
Costs to sell a house FAQs
How much does it really cost to sell a house?
While the cost to sell a house depends on your market and how you go about selling, it typically costs between 7.59% – 8.59% of a home's sale price.
That means sellers typically pay at least $26,000 in fees on a average-priced U.S. home sale. The cost to sell a house includes realtor commissions (5.49%), closing costs (1% to 2%), and several variable or optional fees (1% to 2%).
But sellers can save thousands of dollars on listing agent commission by negotiating a lower rate with agents, or using an agent-matching service like Clever.
Why does it cost so much to sell a house?
Realtor commission is the single largest expense when selling a home. It costs an average of 5.49% nationwide to cover both the listing agent and buyer's agent commission.
Closing costs add an additional 1% or more to your home's sale price, depending on factors like your market, the distance of your move, and if you pay for optional pre-listing expenses, like a home inspection or staging.
Use our cost to sell calculator to determine your potential home sale costs.
Do home sellers pay closing costs?
Yes. Home buyers and sellers have separate closing costs. Sellers typically pay closing cost fees that add up to more than 1% of the home's sale price. Those costs often include transfer taxes, recording fees, prorated property taxes, HOA transfer fees, and real estate attorney fees.
Learn three ways to save on your potential home sale costs.
How to Sell Your Home – The Ultimate Guide: Learn everything you need to know about the home selling process, from start to finish, to get ready for your big sale.
How to Find a Real Estate Agent: What You NEED to Know: Discover the top ways to start your search for a local real estate agent, and learn what to watch out for along the way.
Negotiating Real Estate Commission: One approach to saving money on real estate commissions is to directly negotiate with an agent. Learn how to do that here.
What is a CMA in Real Estate? Learn why a CMA report is a more accurate home valuation method compared to online home value estimators, and how to get one for free.