What are the Seller Closing Costs in Massachusetts?

seller closing costs in Massachusetts

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According to Zillow, the median home in MA sold for $423,344. Here’s how you can save approximately $12,700 in commissions on an average MA home by selling it For Sale By Owner on Houzeo.com

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the final step of selling your home. Closing on a Massachusetts home can be one of the most exciting moments for you as a seller, but it can also be frustrating alone if you aren’t well prepared. Massachusetts is also one of the expensive states when it comes to closing costs. Several regulations make it a tedious state.

As a Houzeo For Sale By Owner (FSBO) seller, we expect you to go to your closing prepared. Our comprehensive Massachusetts Home Seller Guide will help you accomplish exactly that.

Did you know Houzeo’s Gold Plan provides relevant Federal and State Seller Disclosures?

In this section, we’ll discuss the key documents and expenses you need to be aware of when closing on a home in Massachusetts.

What Are the Different Home Seller Closing Costs in Massachusetts?

1.Mortgage Payoff:  One of the biggest items on your list of fees, it’s the remaining balance or prepayment penalty on your property at closing. This may include the principal balance, recording fee, or any penalty that the lender might charge you.

2. Real Estate Broker Commissions:: In Massachusetts, the expected full-time professional real estate commission would be around 5% to 7% of the sales prices—typically asked for by listing agent and the other half to the buyer’s agent. Although this fee varies greatly with the level of work or service. If you’re selling FSBO via Houzeo, congratulations… You’ve likely saved thousands by paying $0 in listing agent commission! Go on. Pop a bottle of the finest Champagne or Scotch. You deserve it.

3. State, County, and City Transfer Taxes or Stamps: This fee is charged for transferring your own property title to the buyer. In Massachusetts, they charge a rate of around $4.56 per thousand dollars of the sales price—according to the HUD-1 Settlement Statement at line 1203.

4. Attorney and Escrow Closing Fees: Real estate attorney fee may price at $800 to $1100. Usually varies entirely of the amount of work and what type of home is being sold. It’s your attorney’s obligation to assist you in any way possible, to ensure the success of your sale, and also to protect you from any laws.

5. Additional Certificates: The state of Massachusetts requires additional certificates such as the following:

  • Title V Certificate. This is only applicable if your property has a private septic system. The law requires all properties with private sewerage systems to be evaluated and inspected. In accordance to Title 5, the seller should hire a professional for a system inspection. The pay could be estimated between $600 to $800 for the inspector and the Certificate of Compliance.
  • Smoke Detector and Carbon Monoxide Detector Certificate. For a fee of $50 to $100, this is a certification conducted by the local fire department to ensure your property is in compliance with the local and state regulations. Under the Massachusetts State Law, the seller is responsible to remedy any issues on Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors in the property. It’s preferable to get the test as earlier as possible so there would be more time for other inspections.

6. Title Insurance. Usually calculated based on the home sale price. This means that it entirely depends on the value of the property when it comes to the cost of your title insurance.

7. Title Search. It’s an examination of the property title to avoid any issues or liens that should be settled prior to closing. The fee would cost around $300 to $600.

8. HOA Dues, Document Fees, and Transfer Fees: These include HOA dues, a document fee at the beginning of Escrow, and a transfer fee at the end of Escrow. If your property is part of an HOA in Massachusetts, you can also check the Massachusetts HOA and COA Foreclosures.

How Should I Prepare for My Massachusetts Home Closing?

Your closing agent will schedule a date for your closing. Here’s how to prepare for your closing day

1. Review Your Closing Documents in Advance: Closing documents should generally be available to you in advance of the scheduled closing date. Review these documents at length and understand their provisions. Here are some key documents you’ll likely sign at closing:

The HUD-1 or Closing Disclosure: This form must be supplied to the borrower at least 3 days before the closing. Most Massachusetts homes are purchased with a mortgage. If this is the case on your transaction, you’ll get the Closing Disclosure summarizing the costs in detail. If your transaction is all cash, you may get the HUD-1, although this is less common.

These documents detail amounts you’re being charged for (all fees including taxes, insurance, escrows, credits, etc.) Remember, depending upon how much equity you have in the property, you might be asked to bring a check (or send a wire) on the closing date. Ensure there are no typos in your name, address, property address, bank info, and other details. Then review every amount and the totals to ensure there are no mathematical errors or inadvertent costs. You’ll be surprised how many times these documents have errors – this is one of the reasons our founder launched Houzeo.

The Deed: (Deed preparation costs between $150 to $200) This document enables the legal transfer of title from the seller to the buyer. Read this document carefully, verifying all details including the legal description of the property, the deed book, deed book page, and the Property Identification Number (PIN), if any.

We know of a case where a Seller sold a $94,000 property, but the deed also legally transferred over the Seller’s 5 other homes worth $680,000 over to the Buyer. There was a huge scramble post-closing to correct this mistake. It could have been a nightmare for the Seller if the Buyer didn’t honestly transfer the rest of the properties back to the Seller.

2. Ask Questions: If this is your first time selling a property, schedule an appointment with the closing agent before the date of the closing. Prior to that appointment do your research and ask clarifying questions on anything you have doubts about.

3. Bring TWO Forms of Official ID: There will likely be a licensed notary involved who’ll require that you swear you are who you say you are. Take a valid driver’s license or passport for ID. Carry a secondary ID as well, just in case.

Now you’re ready! You might’ve heard horror stories of people being blindsided by high closing costs in Massachusetts – but that’s often the result of not preparing and educating themselves ahead of time. If you are a Houzeo For Sale By Owner Seller in Massachusetts, we want you to be one of the most educated home sellers out there. Next step, log on to Houzeo.com and list your home for sale by owner. You’ll be in full control of your listing, and save thousands in the process!

Note: This is only a quick guide for all the sellers in Massachusetts. Despite most information readily available online, seeking expert advice helps progress the process of selling a home.

Did you know Houzeo’s Gold Plan provides relevant Federal and State Seller Disclosures?

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Closing Costs in Massachusetts FAQs

What are closing costs in Massachusetts for seller?

If you’re planning on selling your Massachusetts home, here are crucial expenses you need to consider: Real estate attorney fee that costs around $800 to $1100. Massachusetts Excise Tax Stamps which amounts to $4.56 per thousand dollars of the home price. Real Estate Agent Commission costs between 5% to 6%. Title V (Septic Expense) for an inspection and certificate of compliance that could cost $800. The Smoke Detector and Carbon Monoxide Detector Certificate charge a fee between $50 to $100. 

Who pays closing costs in Massachusetts?

Both the buyer and seller should pay the fees at the closing. They must pay for their real estate agents, and also the commission of the buyer’s agent that is 5% to 6% of the home’s sale price. As a buyer, you should expect to pay most of the closing costs, while some fees are for the seller. But when all things considered, who pays what costs are a negotiable matter. So that means a little talk can lead to a bigger sale price.

How much are closing costs in Massachusetts for buyer?

If you’re planning on buying a Massachusetts home, here’s a list of usual closing fees you need to know: Property Tax, Home Inspection ($400 to $800), Escrow Closing Fees ($2.00 per thousand dollars of the purchase), Recording Fee (varies by every county), Title Insurance, Flood Insurance (average costs of $550 a year), and Title Search. Other optional fees may include Pest Inspection ($100-$200), Radon Inspection, Mold Inspection ($250-$350), Title V Inspection ($600-$800), Well Water Inspection, and Lead Paint ($200-$400).

How should I prepare for my Massachusetts home closing?

At this point, you’re in the final stage of selling your home. Here’s how to prepare for your closing day: 1. Review your closing documents beforehand—the HUD-1 or Closing Disclosure and The Deed; 2. When in doubt, ask questions; 3. You must provide two forms of official ID—a driver’s license or passport. Other things you need to bring are keys, codes, garage door openers, and any devices to access the control system of your property. 

How can I save my closing costs in Massachusetts?

By selling your property as For Sale By Owner on Houzeo.com, you can save up a huge fortune. Considering the median home in Massachusetts sold for $423,344, the approximate money you can save can be around $12,700 in commission. It’s a great steal! And to top it all, you’ll have complete control of your listing and sell the property fast and easy. 

How can I list my Massachusetts House on MLS Listing?

A small flat fee can put your Massachusetts home in Houzeo’s Flat Fee MLS listing. Our wide range of custom-made plan has everything you need to make home-selling easier and convenient for you. Just provide the required information and photos for the listing. Once done, you have to sign the necessary agreements and disclosures. 

How much is the transfer tax in Massachusetts?

Unless there’s an agreement that the buyer will shoulder the fee, the seller has the usual responsibility to pay the real estate transfer tax. In most Massachusetts counties, and as of the year 2010, the estimated costs could run $4.56 per $1,000—according to the HUD-1 Settlement Statement 1203. Also, you need to purchase excise stamps from the Registry of Deeds in the county to pay the tax. 

What are the documents and expenses in closing a Massachusetts home?

To complete closing a home in Massachusetts, here’s what you need. 1. Mortgage Payoff, 2. Real Estate Broker Commissions (5% to 7% of the sales price), 3. Transfer Taxes or Stamps ($4.56 per thousand dollars of the sales price), 4. Attorney and Escrow Closing Fees, 5. Title V Certificate ($600 to $800) and the Smoke Detector and Carbon Monoxide Detector Certificate ($50 to $100), 6. Title Insurance, 7. Title Search ($300 to $600), 8. HOA Dues, Document Fees, and Transfer Fees.