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Selling your home? Make sure you’re aware of hidden costs

Don't overlook these key expenses

It’s no secret that buying a home takes time and money. Well, it turns out, so does selling a home. According to Zillow and Thumbtack’s Hidden Costs of Selling Analysis, the average homeowner spends over $15,000 in “hidden costs” to sell their home. 

While a real estate agent’s commission is one of the most expensive costs, it definitely isn’t the only one. From staging fees, home improvements, repairs and seller concessions, there are several hidden costs involved in the selling process. 

Are you thinking about selling your home? Make sure you’re aware of the fees you’ll have to pay, so you can budget accordingly. Here are three potentially unexpected costs you should be aware of:

1. Staging Costs

To attract potential buyers, sellers have to make sure their home is aesthetically pleasing. Not only does the house need to be clean, but the furniture should match the decor and be arranged in an appealing way. 

According to HomeAdvisor, the average seller pays almost $1,500 in staging costs. And while there are ways to cut down on staging costs, staging a home is crucial to making sure it sells quickly, and for the price you want. 

You also want to make sure the outside of your house is in good shape. After all, curb appeal is just as attractive to potential buyers as the indoor layout. Besides cutting your grass and mowing your lawn, you might also decide to add certain foliage to increase your home’s price tag.

Home improvements and renovations are also important to buyers. For example, let’s say a buyer is deciding between two homes with a similar price tag. If one of those homes has new kitchen appliances, they’re probably going to go with that one. 

2. Real Estate Commission

Working with a real estate agent isn’t free, but it takes the work off your plate as a seller. A real estate agent finds potential buyers, arranges housing tours and handles all the paperwork and coordination between all the parties involved.

According to Redfin, the average real estate commission is 5%–6% of the home’s sale price. Of course, this percentage varies depending on the agent and the location of the house being sold.

3. Seller Concessions

A concession is when the seller agrees to pay part of a buyer’s closing costs. This is usually done in an effort to convince the buyer to take the deal. A seller concession could include putting money towards the inspection costs, appraisal fees, taxes or another expense. Naturally, the price a buyer will ask a seller to pay will vary.

Sellers also have to pay closing costs. And while a concession can be part of closing costs, sellers might also have to pay attorney fees, transfer taxes and costs related to paying off the mortgage. 

Bottom Line

While this is a great time to be a seller, it’s not without its challenges. Regardless of how high in demand your house is, you’ll end up spending money to sell your home. 

3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

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