When you're ready to close on your home, both you and the buyer will be charged closing costs, which are a variety of fees required to transfer the ownership of your property to the buyer.
As the seller, your closing costs will typically range from 1% to 3% of the total sales price. These costs will generally cover fees related to transferring ownership of the property such as transfer fees, title insurance, and recording fees.
However, when considering your expenses, remember these closing costs don't include your realtor fees. You'll still need to pay realtor commission fees — which average 6% in West Virginia.
Between the closing costs and agent fees, your expenses can add up quickly. But, it is possible to reduce your selling costs.
To learn about all your options when selling your home, get in touch with Clever for a free, no-obligation consultation to see how you can sell your home and save. Working with a full-service Clever Partner Agent can save you up to 50% on commissions, putting thousands back in your pocket and reducing the total cost of selling your home.
To help you better understand what your closing costs are and what they cover, here's everything you need to know about paying closing costs on your West Virginia home.
What are closing costs?
Closing on your home is the final phase in the home selling process where you officially transfer ownership of your property to the buyer. During closing, all the necessary paperwork and payments are finalized. And if all goes to plan, both you and the buyer will have satisfied all agreements laid out in the contract.
At closing, a third-party representative from an escrow company will oversee the process to ensure all money and documents are transferred properly.
Both you and the buyer will also be responsible for various closing costs. These costs are assorted fees needed to facilitate closing on your home. As the seller, closing costs will be deducted from the profit on your home, so you don't need to worry about paying out of pocket.
How much are closing costs in West Virginia?
While both you and the buyer will be shelling out for closing costs, typically the buyer takes the brunt of closing costs. For the buyer, they'll pay around 3% to 4% of the sales price. As the seller, you'll typically pay around 1% to 3% in closing costs.
Keep in mind, however, while your closing costs are lower, they don't include commission fees which can tack on an additional 6%.
How to Calculate Your Closing Costs in West Virginia
To ensure you know exactly what to expect, you can easily calculate your closing costs by multiplying your home price by the typical closing cost percentage — between 1% and 3%.
For example, according to August 2019 data from Zillow, the median sale price in West Virginia is $148,800. If you multiply this price by the usual closing cost percentage (1%-3%), you can expect your closing costs to range anywhere from $1,488 to $4,464.
What's included in West Virginia closing costs?
While buyers and sellers have their own typical closing costs, who pays what is negotiable. If a buyer submits an offer requesting you cover some of their closing costs, you'll want to know what they are and how much they'll cost.
Title Search: $300
The buyer's lender will conduct a title search to ensure you're the true owner of the property and there are no liens or issues with the home.
Title Insurance: $1,000
Title insurance protects the buyer and the lender from any unexpected liens or problems that might arise with the property's title in the future.
Home Inspection: $270 and $348
Before closing, you'll have a home inspection to determine if there's any major issues with your home.
An appraisal verifies the worth and value of your property for the buyer's lender.
Lenders typically require a survey to ascertain the property boundaries and building locations.
Credit Report: $25
The charge for a lender to pull your credit history and credit score.
Loan Payoff Costs: 0.5% to 1.5% of the sales price
Loan payoff costs include application fees, prepaid interest, and loan origination fees for the buyer.
Mortgage Payoff/Prepayment Penalty: Varies depending on your lender
At closing you'll be responsible for paying off the remainder of your mortgage. And depending on your lender, if you pay off your loan before the end of your mortgage's term, you may be charged a penalty.
Outstanding Amounts Owed on the Property: Varies
These additional costs can include prorated property taxes, unpaid homeowners association dues, utility bills, and homeowner's insurance.
Transfer Taxes: $6.60 on every $1,000 of the sale price
Transfer taxes are issued by the state to transfer the deed of your property to the buyer which can vary depending on your county.
> Learn more about West Virginia transfer taxes with: West Virginia Real Estate Transfer Taxes: An In-Depth Guide.
Recording Fees: Varies by County
This fee is to register the sale and transfer of your property, making it part of the public record. The cost does vary by county but as an example, in Boone County recording fees cost $25 for the first five pages and $1 for each additional page of a deed.
Attorney Fee: $600
In West Virginia you're required to have an attorney present at closing to assist with the deed transfer and help manage any documents. The average cost in West Virginia is around $600 but can vary depending on your transaction.
Other State Requirements: Varies
Before you can sell your home, West Virginia requires you to have both a pest inspection and a lead-based paint inspection to protect the buyer. On average, a pest or termite inspection will cost you anywhere from $50 to $280 and a lead-based paint inspection will cost between $253 to $342.
Other Home Selling Costs in West Virginia
In addition to closing costs, you'll also want to factor in other major expenses that will crop up when selling your home. The biggest cost will likely be your real estate commission fee. Typically, you as the seller are responsible for covering both your agent's commission, as well as the buyer's agent's commission.
The average commission rate in West Virginia is 6% of the sales price of your home. That 6% is then split, usually evenly, between your agent and the buyer's agent so both agents walk away with 3% each.
For example, the median home price in West Virginia is $168,500. With a 6% commission rate, assuming you get an offer for your asking price, you'll be paying around $10,110 in commission costs and each agent will receive $5,055.
But commission costs won't be your only added expense. You'll also want to budget for any repairs you'll need to make that came to light during the inspection. You can either pay for these repairs directly or provide the buyer with a credit.
And don't discount the repairs and home improvements you'll need to make even before your home hits the market. Any storage fees, staging and prepping, or landscaping done to up the value of your home can also set you back a few thousand dollars.
Who pays closing costs in West Virginia?
Typical Seller Closing Costs
For you as the seller, your 1% to 3% in closing costs typically relate to paying off any outstanding bills and loans as well as fees needed to transfer the ownership of the property. In addition to paying commission and repair costs, here's what you'll mainly be responsible for in closing costs:
- Transfer fees
- Title insurance for the buyer
- Attorney fees
- Mortgage payoff and any penalty fees for prepayment
- Escrow fees
- Prorated property taxes
- Recording fees
- Other amounts owed like HOA fees and utilities
Typical Buyer Closing Costs
Compared to you, the buyer usually has a long laundry list of closing costs. Their 3% to 4% in closing costs mostly cover the expenses associated with lender fees. Here's what the buyer can expect in closing costs:
- Application fee
- Courier fee
- Title search fee
- Appraisal fee
- Credit report fee
- Home inspection
- Lender's title insurance
- Survey fee
- Origination fee
- Underwriting fee
- Attorney fees
- Prepaid interest
- Recording fees
- Escrow fees
Should you pay the buyer's closing costs?
Like most things in real estate, closing costs can be negotiated. So even if a buyer traditionally pays a certain closing fee, it doesn't mean that the seller can't cover it instead.
But why would you do this? Wouldn't you want to walk away with as much profit as possible?
While, yes, you want to earn as much as you can from the sale of your home, sometimes it's actually in your best interest to help the buyer and pay for some of their closing costs.
The buyer typically puts up the most money during a real estate transaction. Because of the financial burden put on the buyer, they may struggle to come up with the funds to cover both the home price and closing costs. To ensure a buyer won't back out due to lack of finances, you can help out with some of the buyer's closing costs to seal the deal and make sure the deal goes through.
Another reason you would be motivated to pay the buyer's closing costs is if you're selling in a buyer's market, when buyers have plenty of homes to choose from. In this scenario, by offering to pay closing costs, you can incentivize buyers to consider your home over others, helping to clinch the deal.
Key Takeaways for West Virginia Home Sellers
Most sellers don't realize the extent of costs that come with selling their home. Between commission, home staging/prepping, and closing costs, the cost to sell your home adds up.
But now that you know you'll be coughing up an additional 1% to 3% in closing costs, you won't be blindsided and can properly budget so you have enough left over to purchase your next home or cover moving costs.
To get a better idea of what closing costs you should expect for selling your specific West Virginia home, consult with an experienced real estate agent, tax advisor, or attorney to ensure you won't be surprised by any charges.
And to help you save even more when selling your home, look for ways to reduce your commission costs, which make up the bulk of the expenses. Clever Real Estate partners with top, full-service agents across the country who works for a flat fee of $3,000 or 1% if your home sells over $350,000, saving you thousands in commission.
To learn more about how you can save at closing, get connected with an experienced, local Partner Agent and see how much you can save on selling your West Virginia home.