Homeowners spend $15K on average to prepare for sale

Dive Brief:

  • U.S. homeowners spend an average of $15,190 in extra costs that come with selling their home, according to a joint report from Zillow and Thumbtack.
  • The analysis found that more than eight in 10 home sellers invested in home improvements before listing their properties. Staging, carpet cleaning, interior painting, lawn care and house cleaning were the five most common improvement projects, and those who outsourced those jobs could expect to spend more than $2,650 nationwide to cover the costs.
  • U.S. sellers, on average, spend $12,532 on closing costs for agent commissions and sales or transfer taxes, which varies based on the home's sales price. Sellers in pricey markets like San Francisco can expect higher closing costs, paying up to $51,520 on average for a median home. Sellers in lower priced markets and in states without transfer tax will pay much less in closing costs, such as Indianapolis, where sellers pay only $8,238.

Dive Insight:

A shortage of available listings and growing demand for homes is continuing to lift prices and dissuade some would-be sellers from putting their properties on the market, for fear of being unable to find a replacement in time.

While the number of U.S. adults who expect to see housing prices rise in the coming months has increased, according to a recent Gallup poll, some owners are turning to value-add projects to have a better chance of securing a higher return on their investment when they do choose to list their homes.

Apart from routine maintenance and repair work, homeowners are eyeing value-add upgrades such as smart technology, built-in bars and marble countertops, according to real-estate listing website Redfin. Lower-cost outdoor renovation work is also piquing owners' interests, as they look to make homes livable for themselves now, in anticipation of selling at a higher value later on.

The residential remodeling market peaked at $340 billion in 2015, according to Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies. Spending is only expected to grow, with forecasts by the center predicting annual growth to continue at a rate of 2% in the sector through 2025. 

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Filed Under: Residential Building Economy
Top image credit: KB Home/Business Wire