When it’s time to sell your home, you want the process to be fast, easy, and inexpensive. But selling a home the traditional way can take several months in some markets and can be a major drain on your bank account.
Many sellers aren’t aware of how much selling a home can cost. From real estate agents’ commissions and expensive repairs to closing costs, home sales aren’t always cheap.
Fortunately, there are ways to sell a home that won’t break the bank. Read on to learn the cheapest way to sell a property.
How Much Does it Cost to Sell a House?
Even in a “seller’s market,” in which there’s a shortage of homes for sale, selling a house can be expensive. But how much does it really cost?
Real Estate Agents’ Commission
The largest expense for most home sellers is the real estate agents’ commission. In most cases, this fee runs from 5 to 6 percent of the total selling price. For instance, if your home sells for $200,000, you’d end up paying (at least) $10,000 in commissions.
This commission is usually split between the seller’s agent and the buyer’s agent. But according to a recent study by Bankrate.com, in 77 percent of transactions, the home seller pays the entire fee.
Repairs and Renovations
Got a leaky faucet or (worse) a leaky roof? Want to replace those 1970’s avocado green appliances? Whether you have necessary repairs to complete or want to update your home before selling, it’ll cost you.
Plus, if the inspector or appraiser find any major problems, you’ll likely have to fix them before selling. Either way, making repairs and renovations is not cheap.
Studies show that staging a home for sale can increase the selling price. But staging costs money, too. Costs like a fresh coat of neutral paint, renting a storage unit, or installing new flooring add up fast. According to Realtor.com, most professional home stagers require a three-month contract, so even if they help you sell quickly, you’ll still be on the hook for staging costs for the remainder of the contract.
Usually, the buyer pays closing costs, which range from 2 to 4 percent of the sale price. But they may ask you to chip in and foot at least part of the bill. Closing costs often include:
- Title policy and insurance
- Attorney fees
- Property and transfer taxes
- HOA fees
- Escrow costs
- Brokerage fee
Alternative Ways to Sell Your House
Fortunately, there are a few cheaper ways to sell your house.
First, price your home to sell. You want your home to stand out, and a competitive price may just do the trick. While you may make less money on the sale price, the lure of landing a good deal — even the home needs work — may incentive buyers. That way, you may be able to sell the home for a bit less, but avoid investing in repairs and upgrades.
You may work with a flat-fee agent to save money. This type of agent agrees to sell your home for a flat fee, rather than taking a full 3 percent (or more) commission. Usually, this costs less than the industry average.
Sometimes, you may be able to negotiate real estate agent fees. Some agents will agree to represent both the sale of your current home and the purchase of a new home for a reduced fee. Either way, it doesn’t hurt to ask!
You can save money by doing minor work yourself, instead of hiring professionals. Just keep in mind that DIY projects must still be good enough for an appraisal.
The Cheapest Way to Sell House?
Selling your home yourself, also known as FSBO, is the cheapest way to sell a house. This means you will be responsible for everything involved in the sale, from listing the property to marketing it, showing it to potential buyers, and negotiating the sale price. With this, there are drawbacks such as you will need to invest a significant amount of time and effort into the process, and you may not be as successful as you would be if you worked with a real estate agent.
If you’re looking to sell your home quickly, the easiest way to sell a house is through a home-buying business like HomeGo. Offers are based on the value of your home and the company handles all paperwork and closing costs.