What Are the Closing Costs for Buying a Home?
If you are in the market to purchase a home, you may be wondering who pays for closing costs.
Typically, buyers and sellers each pay their own closing costs. Oddly enough It can change by
county … by tradition not rules!
Buyer’s Closing Costs
When you buy a home there are closing costs. These are costs that go above what you are paying
for your down payment. Closing costs are your out–of–pocket fees used for items like getting your
home loan, having the house appraised, getting the title transferred into your name and so on.
Your closing costs can range between two and as much as five percent of your loan amount.
This means if you’re taking out a $600,000 mortgage loan, closing costs could range from $12,000
to $30,000. The amount a home buyer has to pay in closing costs can vary a lot depending on
the home price, location, and other factors.
Typical closing costs paid by the buyer include:
Origination Fee — This is the fee from your mortgage lender used to set up and process your
application, verify your documents, underwrite, and close your loan.
Appraisal Fee — This is the fee to have your home appraised.
Title Search and Title Insurance — A title search ensures that your new home’s title is clear,
and no one else can claim rights to the home or property. Title insurance provides protection
against undiscovered claims.
Upfront Mortgage Insurance or Funding Fee — Some home loans require an upfront fee to
insure or ‘guarantee’ the mortgage. Government–backed home loans like FHA, VA, and USDA
mortgages, all have an upfront fee, though you can roll this fee into your loan amount instead of
paying it at closing.
Discount Points — Discount points let you ‘buy’ a lower interest rate by paying an extra fee at
Escrow — Escrow is set up so that you pre–pay money that will be placed in an escrow account
and disbursed as necessary to pay for your property taxes and homeowners’ insurance.
You will also have your down payment due at closing, This impacts cash to close but is not a
closing cost – you are paying a portion of the purchase price to the seller.
Any earnest money you paid when you made an offer on the house will be credited toward your
down payment at closing.
The type of mortgage you choose can also have a big effect on your closing costs. And the biggest
of these is mortgage insurance.
Mortgage insurance or MI is only paid when put less than 20% down to buy the home. Most
mortgage insurance is paid with your monthly payment and considered an annual payment,
however there are some loan programs that also have an initial mortgage insurance premium that
is called an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium and may be due at closing as well.
Let’s look at some of these types of programs with Upfront Mortgage Insurance.
FHA Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP)
The first program is FHA home loans which require annual mortgage insurance and an upfront
The upfront mortgage insurance premium, or UFMIP — is equal to 1.75% of the loan amount, or
$1,750 for every $100K borrowed.
Despite its name, FHA upfront mortgage insurance doesn’t have to be paid at closing. Most
borrowers roll this cost into their loan amount rather than pay it with cash.
Rolling UFMIP into your loan will greatly reduce your closing costs. But it does mean you’ll pay
interest on the fee over the life of your home loan.
VA Loan Funding Fee
VA loans do not require annual mortgage insurance. But they do require a one–time ‘funding fee’
due at closing.
For first–time home buyers, the VA funding fee is usually equal to 2.3% of the loan amount. Buyers
who’ve used a VA loan before will pay 3.6% of their loan amount. If you make a down payment
of 5% or more, the VA funding fee is reduced.
If you have a service related disability – the funding fee can be waived.
VA home buyers also have the option to roll this fee into their loan amount instead of paying it
along with their closing costs.
sometimes it’s worthwhile to ask the seller to provide a credit towards closing costs rather
than a reduction in price. Sure you pay a little bit more for the house but if cash to close is
the critical factor it’s a way to get there.
It’s important to be aware of all the costs associated with buying a home so that you have enough
money to pay your closing costs. If you’re not sure, check with your lender, they will cover your
closing costs and your options.
There are several costs to be aware of when buying a home, but the great news is that our team
is here to help you throughout the process.
I look forward to helping you get into the house of your dreams!