Which Closing Costs Will I Pay When Buying a Home?

by Lori Vernon Gagetta 02/18/2019

If you’re a first-time homebuyer, you might be wondering what all of the expenses you can expect to have when it comes time to close on your home.

Ideally, you’ll want to understand all of the closing costs months in advance so that you can plan accordingly. However, even if you’re close to purchasing your first home, it’s still useful to get to know closing costs better.

In today’s post, I’m going to cover the closing costs that are typically the buyer’s responsibility.

Buyer’s closing costs

There’s good news and bad news when it comes to closing costs for buyers. The bad news is that buyers are typically on the hook for the majority of the closing costs associated with a real estate transaction. The good news, however, is that many of these fees will be grouped together as part of your mortgage, meaning you won’t have to devote much time or thought to them individually.

That being said, to ensure that you know where your money is going, here’s a breakdown of the main closing costs that you’ll likely be responsible for as a buyer:

1. Attorney fees

Real estate attorneys research the ownership of the home, ensuring that the seller actually has the right to sell you the property. Though this is usually a formality, it is an important one.

Attorneys can either charge a flat fee or hourly rate.

2. Origination fees

The origination fee is paid upfront to the lender. It’s the fee that they charge for processing your mortgage application and getting you approved as a borrower.

3. Prepaid interest

Many buyers pay their first month’s interest in advance. This is the amount of interest that will accrue from the time you purchase the home until your first mortgage payment is due (a month later).

4. Home inspection

Inspections are one of the closing costs that can save you a ton of money in the long run if they find anything during their visit to the home. Inspectors should be licensed in your state, and you should choose your own inspector based on ratings and reviews (not at the recommendation of someone who is incentivized to sell you the home such).

5. Escrow deposits

Escrow deposits are typically shared between the buyer and seller and it is the fee that escrow agents charge for their services. You can think of an escrow as a neutral third party that keeps your money safe while purchasing a home.

6. Recording fees

All real estate purchases have to be recorded by the local government. Typically, this is performed by the county or town hall. Recording fees are charged whenever a real estate transaction occurs.

7. Underwriting fees

Mortgages are all about determining risk. A lender wants to know whether they will see a return on their investment by lending to you. To do so, they research your credit and income history. The fee the charge for this work is called the underwriting fee.

About the Author
Author

Lori Vernon Gagetta

After attending the University of Iowa, Lori traveled extensively with her positions in the travel industry before calling the Napa Valley home. For the past twenty years, Lori has earned a reputation for her organizational skills, honesty and integrity in the community as Manager of a local Travel Agency, as Director of Operations for Francis Coppola and as Director of Operations for a highly successful executive placement firm. 

These diverse positions have enabled Lori to explore the many different aspects of business from a small, local yet competitive company to the worldwide exposure of marketing international resorts, property management and the high tech industry of Silicon Valley.

As a member of the North Bay Association of Realtors, Napa Chapter, the National Association of Realtors, the California Association of Realtors and the Bay Area Real Estate Information Services, Coldwell Banker Previews International, Lori brings her attention to detail and her dedication to customer to Real Estate. Joining Coldwell Banker, Brokers of the Valley in August 2001, has afforded Lori the opportunity to experience all aspects of the residential real estate market. From the first time home-buyer, to the acquisition and marketing of vineyard land, ranch or estate property, Lori offers a progressive, informative and professional approach. 

This dedication and commitment has earned Lori a position in the President's Elite, the top 1% of all Coldwell Banker International Sales Agents.