What are your typical closing costs?

Hi there,

Beginner here. I have done some research about closing costs, but most resources I found were related to buying a house using a mortgage and not to buying vacant land without a mortgage.

What are your typical closing costs on the buy and on the sell side provided that
a) you use a title agency both when buying and selling the property
b) you use an agent to sell the property.

Let’s say you buy a property for 30k and sell it for 70k.

My questions are:

  1. What would be your average title agency fees when buying the property for 30k?
  2. What other closing costs are there? What would be your overall expenses when buying?
  3. How much does an agent typically charge?
  4. What would be the title agency fees and other fees on the sell side?
  5. Who typically has to carry the title agency fees on the sell side? (I understand that is negotiable but what is standard?).
  6. Who typically has to carry the agent’s fees?

I understand those fees probably also depend on the area, but it would be great to get an average.



Hey man!

I know we spoke during Office Hours yesterday, but I think this is a great opportunity to follow up - thanks for posting this here!

During Office Hours, I wasn’t able to share the settlement statement on the current deal I’m doing because it had sensitive information on it.

I went ahead and blocked that information, so I could upload it here (see below).

I feel like this is a good representation of a “run-of-the-mill” or “base-hit” kind of a deal.

Breaking Down The Numbers

  • The price it’s being sold for is $10,900

  • I bought it for $3,210.57 (including closing costs), which a private money lender funded as a mortgage.

  • When you total all my closing costs, I’m paying $571.69

  • This does not include $654 I’m paying in agent commissions

  • (You’ll see the lender payoff is $5,149.69, which is $3,210.57 in acquisition + $1,939.12. This is their portion of the profit, paid as interest)

With all title costs, agent commissions, and mortgage payoff (the price to purchase originally + private lender’s profit, paid as loan interest) the total cost of everything is:


So my profit for this deal is:

$10,900 - $6,375.38 = $4,524.62

This isn’t the world’s greatest deal of all time… but hey - I’ll take it!


@jarenb Hey Jaren. This is REALLY helpful, thanks so much! I really appreciate that you share this with the community (and I’m sure others do too).

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Now, I want you to take a look at this for comparison. This is the title quote one of my customers just got for a $4900 purchase. I tried, and succeeded, to get him to switch to my title, but after talking with the other title he decided to go with them out of honor, and the fact he prepaid them (???) and they said they already committed the money and would only refund half.

Settlement Fee $ 450.00 (compare to 100-250)
Deed Recording $ 31.50 (compare to Simplifile’s 4.50)
Deed Doc Stamps $ 34.30 (fixed state rate)
Title Search $ 250.00 (compare to 85-100)
Municipal Search $ 85.00 (Included in Title Search)
Electronic Filing $ 50.00 (bandit fee. See Deed Recording)
Owner’s Title Policy $ 100.00 (varies with value, fixed by law)


Watch out for overpriced…anything. Go ask 5 more title companies for their rates using a typical transaction for comparison.

Also, realize that title companies and their upstream (underwriters, etc) are in the weeds with all the real estate activity lately. Expect 30-45 day quotes, and expect some companies to not be accepting more work.


@johannes No problem, my friend! Glad you found it insightful.

I can post an example here as well for a closing I’ll be doing later this week. The purchase price is $69,000, I’m paying all cash (no financing involved), the property taxes are being prorated between the buyer and seller.

Note: I put down a $1,000 earnest money deposit when I made the offer, so the total amount I have to bring to closing is $68,249.13. You can follow the numbers below…

In summary, my total closing costs on this deal are $335 ($69,000 purchase price + $300 closing fee + $30 recording fee + $5 tax certification = $69,335 - $1,000 EMD - $31.07 pro rata share of city/town taxes - $54.80 pro rata share of county taxes = $68,249.13 cash at closing)

A few things to note on this…

  • This is a VERY simple settlement statement because there is no financing involved.
  • In this transaction, a title insurance policy is being paid for, but the seller is paying for it, so you won’t see that cost included here (this is the buyer’s settlement statement, which looks different than the seller’s settlement statement).
  • There are other closing costs I’m paying outside of this statement (namely, a Phase I ESA and a survey). Sometimes these items will be included in the settlement statement, but in this case, they aren’t appearing here, because I paid for these separately.

Also note - in most “normal” transactions, the seller will pay for a pro rata share of their property taxes and for the owner’s title insurance policy - but if you’re buying from a motivated seller and offering to pay all of the closing costs, then the property taxes, title insurance and every other expense will be on your shoulders, as the buyer.


@retipsterseth Hey, just wondering from reading this post. I’m selling a parcel and the buyer wants his Realtor to handle the closing. The Realtor told me that since I don’t have an agent that the seller is required (in AZ) to pay the agent fee. Is that standard? I built a comfortable margin into the price so I’m okay with it but I wasn’t expecting it, and have never heard of that. I always thought the agent can’t get paid by both parties and the agent told me the seller will be paying the buyer’s agent fee.

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@suitedconnector - it is pretty standard for the seller to pay the commission. However, if your buyer is the one insisting on this, you could require that they pay the cost since the service is entirely for their benefit and not you. They would have to cough up the extra cash to cover this, rather than you having to forego this amount of your sales proceeds.

I’ve encountered this in the past, and I sort of look at the situation based on how motivated I am to sell the property. If it’s been a problem child that I’ve been waiting for a long time to sell, and if I have the profit margin to cover it, I’ll just bite the bullet and pay for it in the interest of getting the deal done. However, if I’m not in a situation where I need it sold yesterday, then you could throw it back in the buyer’s court and make them choose to either pay the commission out of their own pocket or just walk from the deal.

@retipsterseth The agent initially wanted 12%! Ridiculous, on a transaction that is so much easier than selling a house. I cut the commission in half and he immediately accepted.

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@suitedconnector Wow, that is crazy! I’ve never heard of an agent charging that much for anything, in any type of real estate (commercial, residential, land or otherwise). Perhaps there’s some logic behind that that I’m just not aware of, but that sounds pretty outlandish. I’m glad you thought better than to pay for all that.

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Here’s a recent example as well, the property was in Texas where the title insurance premium (and the $2 guarantee fee) is et by the state based on the transaction price for the property.