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The Realtor Fees You Don’t Know About and How Much You Should Expect to Pay

Real estate investment. House, key and calculator on table.
Many people who hire real estate agents get confused about the payment process. Keep reading below to learn about these realtor fees and how much they cost.

Are you thinking about hiring a realtor to help you buy or sell a home?

A realtor is a great investment, regardless of if you’re buying or selling. A buyer’s agent will help you find a home within your budget, negotiate on your behalf and can even find properties that haven’t hit the market yet. A listing agent will help you find buyers more quickly and handle paperwork and contracts on your behalf.

Fixed fee real estate can save home sellers thousands.

However, before you seek professional help, you should know about realtor fees. If you’re confused what realtor fees are, keep reading for a complete breakdown of how much you can expect to pay in Western Washington.

What are Realtor Fees?

Realtor fees are traditionally a small percentage of the purchase price of the home. This number is typically around 6 percent, but it can sometimes go down. The fee percentage will depend on the selling price of the home and how competitive the market is in the area.

For example, if the selling price of a home is $400,000, with a 6 percent realtor fee, the realtor fee will total $24,000. This payment is typically shared evenly between the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent. This part of the process is negotiated between the agents, and it’s not something the buyer gets involved in.

At VerraTerra, we are a full service, fixed fee (flat rate) real estate agent. As your broker, we only charge 1% and never more than $6,000 to sell your home. As you can see in the example above, this fee structure can save Seattle home sellers a lot of money on their real estate transaction. 

Who Pays the Realtor?

If you’re the one who’s buying the home, we have good news for you. You’re likely off the hook for paying the realtor, as sellers normally pay realtor fees. This fee is paid by the sellers at closing and, as we mentioned earlier, it’s typically a small percent taken from the selling price.

When you’re selling your home, you should take this into account when you’re considering an asking price.

Be Aware of Other Closing Costs

Paying the realtor isn’t the only closing cost you’ll encounter before you buy or sell your home. Closing costs are also something to consider.

Unlike realtor fees, the closings can (and likely will) be negotiated during the sale. This is when having a good realtor comes in handy, as they’ll need to negotiate who will pay the closing costs during the sale. In addition to the realtor fees, closing costs can include:

  • Taxes or homeowner’s association fees
  • Recording of the deed
  • Surveyor costs
  • Insurance
  • Loan processing

Of course, this is just a short list, and every home sale is unique. You might have only some of these or additional fees that need to be paid. Typically you can expect the total closing fees to be about 3.5 percent of the closing costs. However, depending on where you live, this number can jump between 2 percent and 7 percent.

As we mentioned earlier, who pays the closing fees is negotiated before an offer is accepted. If a seller wants to get rid of a home quickly, they might offer to cover some or all of the closing costs. However, if a buyer wants to make a competitive offer, they might offer to cover all closing costs.

Want to Learn More?

Realtor fees are just one small detail of the home buying and selling process. While these fees can be expensive, the benefits of a realtor typically out weigh the costs. Check out the rest of our blog to learn more about the costs associated with realtors and the selling or buying process.

If you’re thinking about buying or selling in the Western Washington area, contact us today. A VerraTerra realtor will make your life easier.