How Much Are Closing Costs for Sellers in Washington?

By 

Bailey Peterson

Updated 

October 9th, 2020

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According to our analysis in a typical Washington sale, home sellers pay 2.18-2.19% in closing costs. Considering the median home value in the state of $431,487, this amounts to $9,393-9,464. Included in these costs are title company fees, title insurance, transfer taxes, and more.

Below, we discuss the most common closing costs sellers face, who pays for them, and how much they cost.

How much are seller closing costs in Washington?

At the end of a home sale all parties involved go through a process called "closing" — where money is exchanged, papers are signed, and ownership of a property is officially transferred. Closing costs are the fees that are charged during this process.

Based on our research, Washington home sellers usually pay 2.18-2.19% of the home's sale price in closing costs – not including realtor fees – which can eat a large portion of your sale’s profits.

Luckily, the seller isn't saddled with all the expenses. Costs at closing are split between a buyer and seller, and negotiations determine who pays for what.

Below we break down the major closing costs that sellers can expect to pay in Washington:

Title service and closing fees: 0.24-0.27% (~$1,101)

These fees are paid to the title or escrow company for any services provided, including the title search. It’s common practice for sellers to split these fees with their buyer.

Owner's Title insurance: 0.31-0.33% (~$1,393)

Owner's title insurance protects home buyers and their lender if a dispute arises over the ownership of the property. For example, if there’s a clerical error in the paperwork, or if a previous owner failed to pay property taxes, title insurance will cover the costs to remedy the situation. This includes any required legal representation in court or even a reimbursement of the cost of the home.

Transfer taxes and recording fees: 1.60-1.63% (~$6,944)

When property ownership changes hands, the state, county, and/or city charges the new owner transfer taxes. In some cases, these fees are split, but it’s common for the seller to cover these costs in Washington.

» MORE: Washington Transfer Taxes

Property taxes: Varies

Home sellers usually credit the buyer a prorated amount to cover property taxes. This is because property taxes are paid in arrears, meaning you pay them only for the time you’ve owned the home at the end of the pay period.

It's not fair for the buyer to pay taxes on the property before they owned it, so sellers pay buyers the amount they owe for the time they own the home.

Other closing costs

There are other closing costs that a seller may be responsible for, depending on the exact situation. These include:

  • Home Owner’s Association (HOA) fees
  • Settlement or attorney fees
  • Property appraisal fees
  • Mortgage payoff and/or prepayment penalties

Other home selling costs in Washington

Along with closing closets, a seller pays the realtor fees of both the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent. The average realtor commission in Washington — buyer’s and seller’s combined — is 5.45%. This fee is often the largest cost for home sellers at closing.

Looking to keep more of your home's equity? Start with realtor commission

If you are selling your home, your biggest expense will probably be the fees paid to real estate agents.

Real estate commissions average around 5.5% nationwide — which could really take a chunk out of your earnings!

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» LEARN: How much it costs to sell a house in Washington

Who pays closing costs in Washington?

Buyers and sellers each have their own unique closing costs that they're expected to pay. Here’s a breakdown of who typically pays what in Washington:

Closing costWho typically paysAmount
Owner's title insuranceSeller$1,393
Lender's title insuranceBuyer$781
Transfer taxSeller$6,909
Closing feeBoth$1,048 (each)
Recording feesVariesApprox. $100-200

How to calculate your closing costs in Washington

The rule of thumb for sellers in Washington is to expect to pay 2.18-2.19% of their home's sale price in closing costs, but the actual costs can vary depending on your location, your home’s value, and what you've negotiated with your buyer.

For a typical Washington home, here's how the closing cost calculation breaks down:

CategoryPrice
Home sale priceMedian in state
Title service and closing fees (0.24-0.27%)$1,025-1,151
Title insurance (0.31-0.33%)$1,354-1,427
Transfer taxes and recording fees (1.60-1.63%)$6,909-7,014
Total closing costs$9,288-9,592

» LEARN: How to use a seller net sheet