We all know that there are costs to sell a house in Atlanta. Sure you can save a few dollars selling by owner, but it will cost you in terms of time and effort. If you decide to list with a realtor, they do a lot of the heavy lifting, but it will cost you – a lot. And, often, it’s not until you receive the final statement before you realize how much is coming out of your equity (or your pocket!).
Here are just a few of the costs you can expect when selling a house in Atlanta!
#1. Realtor’s Commissions
Good real estate agents are worth their weight in gold. You can typically get more for your house, and their market knowledge and home selling skills can help you sell your house faster in a shorter amount of time.
But they don’t come cheap. A typical realtor fee is 3% for both the buyer’s AND seller’s agents – and both commissions are paid by the seller in Atlanta.
A straight percentage fee means that the more your house is worth, the more it will cost you. If you sell your home for $200,000, commissions will be $200,000 x 6% = $12,000. If your home sells for $300,000, then the cost is $18,000. Quite a chunk!
You can find cheaper agents, or flat fee MLS listings, but beware of low-cost agents. You pay for what you get. You need an agent with marketing skills, good photos, and good negotiation skills – so do your research and interview top agents in your area if you want to go this route when selling your home.
#2. Minor Repairs
You probably shouldn’t do any major repairs before you sell – meaning don’t replace the roof, hot water heater, HVAC, remodel, etc., but you should fix anything that will update the cosmetic condition of your home.
If you need to fix some scuffs, replace some rotten deck boards, pressure wash, or put on a new coat of interior paint, this will increase what you get for your home when you sell.
You want your home to look good when people see it online or in person – so don’t skimp on cosmetic updates.
#3. Staging Your Home
If you’ve already moved and your furniture is out, then you should stage the home. Staging has been shown over and over to help your home sell faster and for more money.
Even if you haven’t moved, you can still enlist the services of a professional stager. They can help you place items and reorganize to make your home appeal to more buyers.
They use items like flower vases, art, and other arrangements so that your home shows very well.
Also, make sure that you take down all of your family pictures and other personal items. You want buyers to see themselves in your home, and taking down personal items will go a long way.
#4. Marketing Your House
If you hire an Atlanta real estate agent, it’s important to ask during your interviews what marketing is included with their service.
Some full-service agents will market your property in several different ways, and some will leave the cost up to you. So make sure that you know this going in.
Even if your agent plans to do all the marketing, you may want to spring for professional photos and virtual tours on sites like Zillow and Redfin to attract more buyers. This can be particularly important during times when there are not as many buyers out there going to open houses.
#5. Negotiated Repairs
Most of the time, after the inspection, the buyer will request some repairs to be made before closing.
You have more leverage in a seller’s market, but many times it’s just easier to go ahead and pay for the repairs in order to get the house sold faster.
Some homeowners will pay for their own inspection prior to listing so that they know what’s coming, but this is just another expense.
#6. Closing Costs
Many home sellers are not prepared for the fees to close the transaction.
You should also be aware that while you don’t have to write a check for many of these fees, they will come out of your equity.
So you won’t see the impact until you receive the closing statement.
These costs are typically 1-2% of the home’s sale price. Doesn’t sound like much, but a $200,000 house will cost you $2000 – $4000 – no small chunk of change!
Here are a few of they typical costs seen at closing:
- Seller’s Concessions – Fees that buyers negotiate for the sellers to pay at closing
- Title Fees – sellers usually pay the buyer’s title insurance premium
- Attorney Fees
- Prorated taxes, insurance, and interest
- Homeowner’s Warranty – many times the seller will pay for a year-long home warranty
#7. Holding Costs
Also called carrying costs, this is a hidden fee that most people don’t realize they are paying. The longer it takes to sell your house, the more money the house is costing you.
This is why a fast house sale to an investor like us can ultimately save you money.
If your house sits on the MLS for months, you still have to pay taxes, insurance, utility bills, general maintenance (like mowing the lawn, blowing leaves, etc.), and keeping the house sparkly clean for showings. And all of these costs are for a house that you don’t want!
This adds up in real dollars, but it also weighs on you mentally. While most of us are resilient and can stick with a home that isn’t selling for a month or two, anybody would become frustrated after the house sits on the market for 4, 5, 6 months or longer.
Selling your house quickly not only saves you money in terms of holding costs, but it also helps you move on much faster, giving you peace of mind and getting that weight off your shoulders.
#8. Moving Fees
Whether you hire a moving company or rent a truck, it costs money to move. And obviously, the bigger the house, and the more stuff you have, and the farther you have to move, the more it costs you.
Some of the rental companies advertise at $19.95 to rent one of their trucks, but it really costs much more than this – especially with a bigger house.
Hiring a moving company will be even more expensive, but it may be the only option if you have heavy furniture and no strong backed family members to help.
How Does it All Add Up?
Taken together, here is what you can reasonably expect to pay when selling your home by agent:
- Realtor’s Commissions – 6% of the sales price
- Minor Repairs & Staging – 1%
- Marketing – 0 – 1%
- Negotiated Repairs – 2%
- Closing Costs – 2%
- Holding Costs – 1%
- Moving Fees – 1%
So, you are looking at 13-14% of your home’s sales price to come out of your pocket or out of your home equity when you go to sell via the traditional way. For a $250,000 home, this comes to $32,500 – $35,000! Even if you go on the low range (say 10%), this is still $25,000.
Give Us a Call Instead!
Selling your house directly to Homeowner Help Today will help you avoid all of these expenses. You won’t have to worry about cleaning, making repairs, property inspections, months of waiting to find a buyer.
We can give you a fair and straightforward offer for your house in Atlanta when you are ready to sell. Give us a call!