Conveyancing How to Guides...

The Cost of Selling a House: What to Expect

Reading time: 4 mins

Carrie Tennick, May 04, 2021

The cost of selling a house can be high, depending on your situation. There are lots of things that could affect how much it costs to sell your house.

Every house move is different and your circumstances will be unique to you. This means the cost of selling your home can vary depending on the person. Your cost might even be different to your neighbour’s.

The list of things that you might have to pay for when selling your house include:

  • Conveyancing fees

You can’t sell a house without legal work. Your conveyancing solicitors will make sure everything is legal and binding so your sale is squeaky clean. Your estate agent might suggest their solicitors, but you don’t have to work with them. It’s your choice.

They’ll usually charge a flat fee, but some will charge a percentage of your home’s value. If you’re buying a house at the same time as selling, you might be able to negotiate your solicitor’s fees. There’s certainly no harm in checking.

Conveyancing fees may be higher when you’re selling a leasehold home as there is extra work involved.

For a quick conveyancing quote, try our calculator

  • Estate agent fees

Your estate agent fees could end up one of the highest costs of your home sale. But this all depends on which agent you choose, how much commission they’ll take and whether you have to pay extra for any of their services.

Negotiating costs with estate agents is common, so don’t feel like you can’t do that. Make sure you’re happy with the terms and conditions before agreeing to go ahead with them.

But there’s also the possibility that you won’t even need an agent. You might be able to sell to someone you already know. You might also be able to market your home yourself to find a buyer – social media is a popular way of doing that.

  • EPC

You can’t sell a house without an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). It gives buyers the information they need about how energy efficient their home is. Like appliances, they are rated on a scale from A to G. According to Which?, the UK average is D.

An EPC is valid for 10 years. This means that if you bought the house you’re selling in the last 10 years, you could use the one you got when you bought it. And EPC costs between £60 and £120, so you’d save some money doing that.

You can also usually save some money by arranging your own EPC, instead of getting one through your estate agent. But make sure you sort one out before you put your house on the market. There are separate rules for listed buildings, so remember to find out whether you need to supply one or not.

  • Home improvements

You might want to make some improvements to your home before you try to sell it. How much you spend on this will depend on how much you want to do.

Some improvements will just need a bit of time, while others might be more major projects. So before you start to renovate the kitchen, it’ll be worth finding out how much value it would add and if you’d really get that back when you sold.

You could get an estate agent around to give you their thoughts. This usually wouldn’t cost anything as it’s part of the initial process before agreeing a contract. But double check that before you invite one over.

  • Mortgage costs

You may have some charges to pay on your mortgage when you sell your house – but it depends on your specific mortgage. You might have to pay a mortgage exit fee or an early repayment charge, depending on your contract. You might also be able to port your mortgage if you’re moving to a home with a similar value. This may or may not have a cost – it depends on your mortgage.

A mortgage exit fee is charged for closing your mortgage account. This means you could have to pay it when you remortgage to a new lender or when you pay off your mortgage. You won’t always have to pay an exit fee, so check your agreement.

The early repayment charge is what you’ll have to pay if you repay your mortgage before the agreed term has ended. This is usually when you’re in a fixed-rate period, but could also apply when you’re out of one so check your terms. An early repayment charge usually costs between 1% and 5% of the value of the mortgage.

  • Removal costs

This one might slip your mind when you’re looking at your finances. But you’ll have to consider how you’re going to move your belongings along with you.

Hiring movers will cost more than doing it yourself, but it could be worth avoiding the hassle. What’s important is that you get enough quotes for movers or hire vans to get the best deal. But don’t always go with the cheapest – reviews are important too.

First4Lawyers may not be able to help with your removals, but we could make sure you get the best legal help at what will probably be a stressful time. Try our conveyancing fees calculator to see what the cost of your sale might be.

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