Expenses When Selling A House

If you want to sell your house in California, there are various expenses you’ll need to be aware of with a traditional market sale. Unfortunately, a number of these costs will eat into the total amount of profit you take away from the sale when going with a standard real estate agent. With some planning, you can find many simple ways to minimize these charges. 

Working with a home buyer like Trusted House Buyers to get a cash offer on your house is the easiest way to sell your house, and leave you the most money in your pocket at the end of the sale. We buy houses as-is in any condition, saving you money on expensive repairs, inspection costs, and agent commissions – not to mention the faster and stress free process.

Read on below to learn more about the different expenses that come with selling a house the traditional way, and remember that’s just one part of what you need to know when selling a house, so if you’re curious to know more, click here.

Expenses Before Selling The House

Before finding a potential buyer for your house, you’ll likely incur several upfront expenses. Although some of these are optional, they should be considered as necessary investments which may help speed up the sales process and help you increase the final offer price you get on the home. Here are some of the most common expenses of this kind.

Painting Cost

You should consider freshening up your old house with a new coat of paint. This will make its appearance more attractive to potential buyers. While some people might think they’re willing to do this themselves, the truth is, you’ll likely need a professional painter. Painting a house is serious business, so it’s best to call in a professional to do the job. Most painters in California charge an average of $3 per square foot of paint, but often a fresh coat of paint can work wonders on a home’s visual appeal.

House Repairs And Improvements

You must be confident that your house is in the best condition possible before showing it to potential buyers. If there are damaged fixtures and appliances, you must get them repaired before hosting any viewings. In some cases, you may decide that you need to remodel some parts of your house to match the desires of your target market. We take the stress away from homeowners by purchasing houses in all conditions, as-is. No remodeling comes cheap, but when properly executed, it can raise the market value of your home. 

Home Staging

Home staging involves hiring an interior decorator to declutter, rearrange, and properly furnish your house before it gets listed. Research has shown that home buyers often pay more for staged houses. If you hire a professional home stager, expect to spend anywhere between a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Home staging doesn’t come cheap, but the results can be phenomenal.


Your lawn and garden are the first things seen by potential buyers when they visit your house. If you want to impress them, you might need to do some landscaping. For instance, ensuring that your lawn is neatly trimmed, and your garden is raked, pruned, and tidied up. These things go a long way in creating the right impression.

Pre-Inspection Reports

Although it is not mandatory, sometimes it’s helpful to have your house professionally inspected for termite, pest, or structural damage before listing it. You can help justify your home’s price with this inspection report or use it to make a list of areas that require repairs. In California, most of these inspections cost about $600 or higher, depending on the home’s size.

Costs Of Closing The Sale

When you’re listing your house, be sure to keep in mind the amount of money you’ll need set aside for paying your closing costs. Fortunately, you can discuss with your buyer who pays for which closing costs. In our case, we cover all closing costs throughout the process. For a traditional market sale, here are some of the necessary closing costs you’ll have to cover.

Agent Commission

If you’re selling your house through a real estate agent, you must pay them a commission at the closing of the sale. In California, most agent commissions range between five and six percent of the sale price. This commission will be shared between your agent and your buyer’s agent.

Credits And Other Closing Expenses

In California, the buyer and the seller agree on who will cover the expenses incurred when closing the sale. These expenses include escrow fees, title insurance, recording and transfer fees, etc. You also must cover the outstanding mortgage and home appraisal fees.

Transfer Tax

In California, you’re required to pay documentary transfer tax at the closing of the sale. This tax is a small percentage of the sale price. Usually, this amount is paid by the home seller.

Property Taxes

California charges a tax on the transfer of property titles at a rate of fifty-five cents per $500 of the closing cost. You also must clear any outstanding property taxes before you transfer the property to the buyer.


Lastly, it’s possible to avoid some of these costs by accepting cash offers on your house. For instance, if the home you are selling is situated in San Diego, you can sell it directly to us, Trusted House Buyers. We are committed to helping owners of distressed homes make quick money by giving them cash offers. We cover all costs, along with repairs and inspection fees. We pride ourselves on giving each customer the best service, and a fair cash offer. So get in touch with us today if you’re interested.

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