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Whether you’re buying or selling a home in Oregon, you’ll pay some form of closing costs. These encompass a variety of expenses, such as attorney fees, appraisal fees, credit checks and much more. They can vary widely depending on the sale price and exact location of the property in question. Here’s a guide to closing costs in Oregon, how much they cost and who pays for what.
How much are closing costs in Oregon?
The rate of closing costs varies greatly by state. In Oregon, it averages a relatively low 0.9 percent of the home’s sale price, according to the most recent data from ClosingCorp. By comparison, neighboring Washington state has an average rate of 2.4 percent. (Note that these figures do not include real estate agent commissions.)
Redfin data shows that the median home price in the Beaver State in September 2023 was $502,000. On a home of that price, 0.9 percent closing costs would come to $4,518. However, prices can range much higher or lower depending on what city you’re in: In Bend, for example, the median price was well beyond that at $725,000, which would result in closing costs of $6,525. In Pendleton, where the median was just $269,900, that figure comes down to $2,429.
Who pays closing costs in Oregon, buyers or sellers?
Buyers and sellers both pay closing costs in Oregon, as they do in every state. That said, there are particular expenses that typically impact one side of the transaction or the other. And, while Oregon does not require an attorney to oversee real estate closings, both sides would be wise to hire one anyway — legal fees can be considered part of closing costs as well. Here’s a breakdown.
Closing costs for buyers
The fees buyers bear the responsibility for are largely mortgage-related. These usually include:
- Lender fees: Fees from your mortgage lender can run the gamut from application fees to credit report charges to loan origination fees and more.
- Appraisal: Lenders will also require, and charge you for, a home appraisal. This is likely to run about $500, though, the location, size and condition of the home will impact cost.
- Home inspection: It’s smart to have the home inspected, to make sure you understand its overall condition and any issues that might need to be addressed. This will likely cost another few hundred dollars.
- Title costs: A title search will be necessary to be sure the home is free of liens or encumbrances before the ownership can be transferred to you, and title insurance protects the home from potential title problems down the line. In Oregon, the seller may pay for the owner’s title policy.
- Escrow: Buyers are often required to pay a preset amount of property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums upfront. These funds are kept in an escrow account and distributed as needed on your behalf.
Closing costs for sellers
Closing costs paid by sellers typically include the following:
- Realtor commissions: The real estate agents involved in the transaction typically split between 5 and 6 percent of the home’s purchase price in commission fees, paid by the seller. This will be your biggest closing expense: 6 percent of a median-priced $502,000 Oregon home comes to more than $30,000.
- Title fees: In Oregon, the seller typically pays for the owner’s title insurance policy.
- Transfer taxes: Most Oregon home sellers are off the hook for this common closing cost: Washington County is the only county in the state that charges a tax to transfer ownership of property.
- Property taxes and HOA fees: When you sell, you’ll need to pay any outstanding balances owed on your property taxes and to your homeowners association (if applicable).
- Concessions: If you agree to cover the cost of repairs or any other cost for the buyer, the amount of these seller concessions will be due at closing.
Wire transfer fees: When you sell your home, the amount you still owe on its mortgage is typically wired to the mortgage company. This may incur a modest fee.
Lowering your closing costs in Oregon
While there is no wiggle room on some real estate costs, like state taxes for example, many closing costs are negotiable.
For sellers, your biggest cost by far is also one of the most frequently negotiated: agent commissions. Even a small discount could yield big savings, especially for a high-valued property. The difference between a 5 percent or 6 percent commission on a median-priced $502,000 home, for instance, is just over $5,000.
Buyers have options for saving money on closing costs as well, starting with negotiating for the seller to pay part of them. This is common when an issue is found during the home inspection, for example — the seller may ask the buyer to cover the cost of repairs. In addition, buyers should look into whether they are eligible for any of the many down payment assistance programs or first-time homebuyer programs out there. If you qualify, these can help cover some of the costs associated with buying a home in the form of grants, low-interest loans or forgivable loans.
Find a local real estate agent
The best way to navigate a real estate transaction is with an experienced local agent by your side. Someone who knows your specific Oregon community inside and out can be an invaluable resource for both buyers and sellers, whether you want to pull neighborhood comps, find a home in a specific school district or price your listing perfectly. An agent can also negotiate on your behalf and ensure that all the required paperwork is taken care of properly.
According to data from ClosingCorp, closing costs in Oregon average about 0.9 percent of a home’s purchase price (not including agent commissions). Typical closing costs for the buyer include fees related to the mortgage, such as an application fee and a loan origination fee, and the costs of a home appraisal and inspection. Seller costs include the real estate agent’s commissions, which are typically the biggest expense of the transaction.
Yes, the seller is responsible for at least some closing costs in every state, including Oregon. These include Realtor commissions and can also cover things like title-related fees, seller concessions and wire-transfer fees when paying off the existing mortgage.