In Raleigh, selling a home costs 7-8% of the home’s final sale price. For the typical home in the City of Oaks, that’s between $30,300 and $34,650. This cost includes home preparation expenses, seller closing costs, and your agent’s real estate commission.
If your jaw is on the floor, it’s okay—it’s not all bad. While some smaller costs (like painting and cleaning) are paid upfront, the largest ones are only due after the home sale transaction is complete. Keep reading to learn more from our detailed breakdown.
Real estate commission
The average real estate commission in Raleigh is 5.5-6.3% of the home’s sale price. This is split between the seller’s and buyer’s agents, and it’s only paid after the sale goes through. This is the largest cost you’ll face when you’re selling your home, so why should you hire a real estate agent at all?
Real estate agents have expert negotiation skills, a professional view of the market, and comprehensive legal knowledge—but the real case is in the numbers. Though you'll pay around 6% for an agent’s services, agent-listed properties sell for 30% more on average than houses listed for sale by owner.
Seller closing costs
Seller closing costs in Raleigh average around 0.8% of the final sale price. For the typical home in Raleigh, that’s about $3,500. Closing costs typically include excise taxes, transfer fees, deed preparation costs, prorated property taxes, HOA transfer fees, and more. Check out a breakdown of some of the fees that can arise unexpectedly if you aren’t advised by your agent.
Home appraisal fee
Home appraisals are a fixed-rate fee (rather than a percentage), and they usually cost $300-$450 depending on the size of your property. For this fee, a licensed appraiser will come to your home, inspect it, and create a write-up detailing how much it’s worth. Usually, a bank won’t lend a buyer money to buy your home if it hasn’t been appraised, so this is a fee you won’t be able to skip.
Home inspection fee
Separate from the appraisal, the home inspection focuses on the structure of the home rather than its value. This inspection looks for issues that call for repair from the roof all the way down to the foundation. They usually cost $400-$500.
While the buyer usually covers the home inspection, it’s a good idea to have your own done pre-listing so you’re not caught by surprise by any critical problems during your home sale.
Property taxes in North Carolina are pro-rated and split between the buyer and the seller. This means you’ll pay property taxes for the part of the year you own your home, and the buyer will pay the remaining amount from when they purchase the property to the end of the year.
The actual cost of the property taxes depends on your home’s assessed tax value and the property tax rates set out by the taxing authorities in your area. Your agent can help you determine the amount you need to pay.
Transfer taxes in North Carolina are paid at a rate of $1 for every $500. That means if you sell your house for $500,000, you will pay a $1,000 transfer fee to the State of North Carolina.
This is currently the only transfer tax you’ll pay in Raleigh. Seven North Carolina counties currently levy an additional 1% tax during the transfer of real estate, but Wake County isn’t one of them.
The word escrow refers to a legal arrangement in which a third party—in this case, an escrow company—holds onto money until conditions (like a completed home sale) are met.
When money is held in escrow, it’s safe in a third party’s hands until the transaction is complete. Your escrow company will also assist in closing and make sure funds are properly distributed to everyone involved in the transaction.
Escrow fees are typically 1-2% of the purchase price, and they’re divided between the buyer and seller during negotiations.
A courier fee is a minor but sometimes unexpected charge that happens when you’re selling a house with a mortgage. You won’t deal with this if you’re mortgage-free, but otherwise, expect to spend around $30 to send your current loan documents where they need to go.
Those are some of the closing costs you can expect to pay while selling your house. During negotiations in a softer housing market, buyers often ask sellers to cover a higher percentage of closing costs, including some of theirs. This is less common in today’s market, in which most properties have multiple offers and buyers battle to stay competitive.
Home preparation costs vary depending on your specific situation. Your agent can help you determine which ones to prioritize to sell your home for top dollar, but we’ve included a few basics here.
A professional cleaning will cost around $205—more or less depending on the state of your home and its size. You can eliminate this cost by going DIY, but letting a pro do it will save you time and stress. Since the professional doesn’t live in your space, they may notice areas needing attention that you normally wouldn’t. Think baseboards, heater vents, light switch plates, and other details that make your house look sparkling new when freshly cleaned.
Big remodels aren’t usually worth your time and effort before a home sale, but minor repairs and cosmetic upgrades are. The most cost-effective moves you can make are repairs to surfaces like walls and doors (around $45 to DIY) and a new coat of paint ($1,915 for a whole project with a 107% ROI).
The average cost of staging a home is $300-$600 for a design consultation and $500-$600 per staged room per month. Other stagers work differently and charge 1% of the final purchase price.
Though staging may seem costly, it’s worth the expense. Staged homes sell 87% faster and for 17% more than empty homes. If you want to save on this expense, focus on staging only the main areas of the home. You can stick to the kitchen, living room, and master bedroom and still get great results.
Not sure who to hire? At the Coley Group, we offer staging services and cosmetic renovations through our Compass Concierge program—at no upfront cost to you.
How can I find a great real estate agent to help me sell my home?
When you decide to sell, you’ll want an agent who will prioritize you, provide you with expert guidance, and help you maximize your home’s value—while making your sale as fast and stress-free as possible. The best agents have intimate knowledge of the locations they serve and a problem-solving attitude. We move quickly and keep you informed every step of the way. Complete the form below to start your seller's journey today.
Not ready to start the process yet? Let’s chat about your situation and what the best course of action will be for you.