Closing Costs in Georgia: Everything You Need to Know

 

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How Much Does Closing Cost in Georgia?

Georgia closing costs vary based on numerous factors, including appraisal fees, inspection fees, and attorneys’ fees. Learn more in this overview.

Author: Stan Faulkner, Founder, Faulkner Law, LLC

Mr. Faulkner is an experienced counselor and litigator with 15 years of experience, having held bar licenses in four states (Mo, Il, Ct and Ga). Stan Faulkner uses this experience and focuses his skills in the pursuit of assisting individuals in probate (trust and estate) matters, guardianships and conservatorships, estate planning, business disputes and contract disputes. Published on November 01, 2021.

Closing is the final step in the process of buying or selling a home. At this point, the buyer is expected to pay a down payment and any other charges that have been agreed upon, while the seller signs and transfers ownership of the property to the buyer.

The entire real estate closing procedure, which includes the transfer of ownership of the property, must be handled by an attorney who is licensed to practice in the state of Georgia.

Most of the time, only one attorney is involved in the transaction, and he or she represents the buyer (in the case of a cash purchase) or the buyer’s lender (in the case of a lender-financed acquisition).

If your home is set to be purchased or put on the market for sale, you may have to pay closing expenses and sales commissions. This page contains thorough information from a Georgia closing expenses attorney who will help you understand all the costs.

Real Estate Closing Costs in Georgia

The closing process is one of the most important times when you’ll need an experienced attorney. Going through the entire experience of selling a house is frustrating enough without thinking it can all fall through during the closing process.

If you want to prevent that, reach out to Stan Faulkner at Faulkner Law. Drawing on more than 16 years of legal experience, he is a responsive and effective closing attorney who can assist you with real estate law and help you succeed with your goals.

Closing Costs Calculator: What Georgia Closing Costs Include

 

Although many closing costs can depend on the condition of the property and the lender’s requirements, some closing costs are typically present in every home sale. These costs include:

  • Fees for a home inspection – Although a home inspection is not mandatory; some choose to get one and avoid financial devastation in case of expensive home repairs.
  • Title fees – When doing a title search, the attorney or the title company will verify the property’s legal owners and determine what other costs have to be paid so the buyer would get a clear title of the property. These closing fees include title search fees and transfers.
  • Real estate transfer taxes – Fees for a transfer tax average $1.00 per $1,000 of the property’s value. Under the Georgia Residential Mortgage Act, $10 for any loan subject and a tax of $1.50 per $500 of the loan amount must also be paid.
  • Appraisal fee – The professional appraiser must value the property before the loan officer moves forward with a home loan. It also ensures the buyer is paying a fair market value of the property.

A settlement state is created by summarizing all the credits, fees, and real estate transactions that show how all the money has changed hands.

Closing Costs Estimator in Georgia

In addition to all the fees mentioned, other fees will probably be included in closing fees.

Closing costs may also include loan origination fees which are charged by a mortgage lender for processing a loan request, attorney’s fees, homeowners’ insurance, property taxes, and other expenses that are due in addition to their monthly payment.

How Much Are Georgia Closing Costs?

The seller typically pays between 5% and 10% of the sales price for the closing. Buyer closing costs are generally between 2% and 5% of the sale.

Currently, the median home value in Georgia is around $250,000, which means the buyer’s closing costs would end up somewhere between $5,000 and $12,500. On the other hand, the seller’s closing costs will approximately be between $12,500 and $25,000.

Similarly, the typical value of homes in Atlanta is around $350,000, so homebuyers would have to pay between $7,000 and $17,500, and home sellers from $17,500 to $35,000.

Average Closing Cost in Georgia

 

All the closing costs are negotiable and can vary. But, if you are a seller, some average closing costs include, for example, 6% of the sales price for a real estate agent’s commission. That is the case, assuming both you and the buyer want to engage an agent for this real estate transaction.

Also, as a seller, you’ll owe property taxes for the portion of the year you owned the house. The title search fee will usually be between $100 and $200, while the settlement fee can be between $350 and $600. You’ll also have to pay a transfer tax to your county when the deed is recorded, as well as any outstanding utility bills and homeowner’s insurance fees.

The buyer pays from $300 to $500 for appraisal and between $250 and $600 for a home inspection. They can also purchase a homeowner’s title insurance policy to protect their interest in the property. Title insurance can, for example, protects lenders or buyers in Georgia from financial liabilities that may arise because of a hidden lien or a claim, as well as from defects on the title of a Georgia property. Also, title insurance can protect the owner or lender from public records mistakes, property line disagreements and other similar events that may occur.

Other costs may include additional windstorm and flood insurance due to the risk of hurricanes and because standard homeowners policies don’t cover flood or wind damage in high-risk states.

Recording fees that cover the cost of registering the sale should also be considered, as well as unexpected costs.

The buyer usually pays document stamps on the mortgage just as the seller pays for the documentary stamps on the deed. The amount to be paid is not based on the property’s purchase price but the mortgage loan amount.

How to Calculate Georgia Closing Costs

Bear in mind that closing costs also depend on the amount of down payment, the selling price, and the buyer’s credit score.

Creditors use a credit score system to determine if an individual would be a good risk for mortgages. So, the buyer will have to pay expenses involved with getting a credit report, credit history, and other potential loan costs. If you take out a conventional mortgage loan in Georgia, you may be required to pay private mortgage insurance. Its purpose is to protect the lender in case a borrower fails to make mortgage rates.

Some mortgage lenders will allow home buyers to pay for discount points upfront to reduce an interest rate. One percent (1%) of your loan amount equals one discount point.

 

Typical GA Closing Costs

A real estate agent will schedule your closing most of the time, and everyone whose name appears on the title to the property or the loan must be present.

Anyone who will not attend and whose name appears in closing documents should send a representative with a Power of Attorney to execute the documents.

The buyer has to bring the agreed amount of money, and both parties should have prepared closing documents. You should make sure to arrive at least 10 minutes before the scheduled time to ensure there is enough time to gather all relevant information.

How Much Money Do You Need for Closing Costs?

In the state of Georgia, an estate closing begins when the seller and the buyer sign the final purchase agreement. The contract has to include crucial terms, such as the purchase price, closing date, and any closing costs paid by the seller.

The closing will happen about 30 to 45 days after all parties sign the contract. All parties involved, including the closing attorney, will be working towards the closing during that time.

The buyer should bring the agreed amount of money, shown on a Good Faith Estimate given by the mortgage lender or on a Settlement Statement. Also, have in mind that a closing attorney can’t accept a personal check above $5,000 at closing.

 

Who Typically Pays Closing Costs in Georgia?

 

Both the buyer and the seller have to pay just one part of closing costs. The buyer closing costs are generally between 2% and 5% of the sale, while the seller typically pays between 5% and 10% of the home’s sale price for the closing costs.

Who Pays Closing Costs and Attorneys’ Fees in Georgia?

When it comes to attorneys’ fees for their services in the closing process, it’s good to know the fees are included in the closing costs. That means neither the buyer nor the seller has to pay attorney fees separately.

Although legal fees may be high, professional help will be worth it. Don’t forget that purchasing a home may be one of the biggest purchases of your lifetime, so you would want to make sure your documentation is in order.

 

How Do I Estimate Closing Costs?

The closing cost typically ranges from 3% to 6 percent of the entire home purchase price. Also, while purchasing a $200,000 home, the price may rise. Closing costs vary depending on your state, the type of loan you’re getting, and the lender.

What Determines Closing Cost on a Home?

It’s good to know that you don’t always have to pay the closing costs up front in the state of Georgia. You can also pay them together with your mortgage loan in some circumstances. 

Many websites offer a closing cost calculator where you can figure out how much the total cost would be. You can use them as a good estimate; however, it would be wise to consult an experienced attorney at the closing of a Georgia estate to make sure you have considered all expenses.

There are many hurdles to overcome, and Stan Faulkner at Faulkner Law can help you do that. He possesses a deep understanding of Georgia’s real estate laws. So, if you encounter a real estate issue, you can contact the law office at (770) 685-9501 and schedule an initial consultation. 

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