In a real estate transaction there are a lot of fees and costs involved but different parties pay for different things. For instance, your lender may pay for title insurance or may ask the buyer to pay for it. And then there are things that sellers pay for, can be asked to pay for, or are required to pay for depending on the state and the requirements for the county and how the real estate transaction and the contract is written up. Generally, here is who pays for what in a real estate transaction.

BuyerWho Pays for What in a Real Estate Transaction?

Buyers are generally expected to pay for the following items:

  • Title insurance premium
  • Notary fee
  • Document preparation
  • Home inspections
  • Tax proration from the date of acquisition
  • Applicable transfer fee
  • Loan charges submitted by the lender
  • Interest on the new loan from the date of funding to 30 days prior to the first payment date
  • Change of record fees
  • Home warranty
  • City transfer or conveyance tax
  • Recording charges for documents


Sellers are generally expected to pay the following items:

  • Real estate agent commission
  • Deed document preparation
  • Documentary transfer fee
  • Loan fees required by the buyer's lender
  • The payoff of existing loans
  • Interest accrued to lender being paid off if necessary
  • Judgments and tax liens
  • Tax proration
  • Unpaid homeowners dues
  • Title insurance premium if necessary
  • Recording charges
  • Bonds or assessments if applicable
  • Delinquent taxes if applicable
  • Notary fees
  • Escrow fees

These fees typically get bound into the overall closing costs required to be paid by buyer, seller, both, or each. Depending on how the contract is laid out. In VA loans and some USDA loans, the sellers are required to pay the majority if not all of the closing costs, even those that would typically be paid by the buyer in a conventional loan situation. The buyer and seller should both receive an estimate of all of these fees and know exactly how much to bring to closing if necessary or how much is going to be wrapped up in the cost of the loan.

For more information on who pays what in a real estate transaction feel free to give us a call. We can help explain all real estate terms and situations and help you buy or sell throughout the Portland Oregon real estate market today.