FAQ: How must does it cost to sell my house? A Complete Guide

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Our Complete Guide To The Costs Of Selling Your House

Today we are walking you through our guide and checklist to most of the major expenses to selling your property. We want to highlight the big costs such as estate agent fees, solicitors fees, stamp duty, removals etc so you can budget accordingly and not miss any thing.

Why it’s important to budget all your costs when moving house?

When you are selling a house, most likely you are looking to buy a new home too. If you are upgrading you have either saved some more money to put into the new house, or you have agreed a larger mortgage. Or if you are downsizing you are taking some money out of your home to live on into retirement or share with the family. Either way, it’s important you budget the total cost of your move so you know you have enough to afford your new home and you have enough left over for all the bits and bobs.

So here is our definitive list of what will and could cost you money when moving house:

1. Estate Agents Feeswhen to talk to an estate agent

Estate agency fees are almost always the single largest cost when you are moving house if you are selling your existing home. As we discussed previously (FAQ: How much does selling your property with an estate agent cost?) estate agent fees can vary between 1% and 2% of the final sales price of your home. So for a €350,000 house at a fee of 1.5%, this will equal €5250. But don’t forget there is VAT applicable to that at 23% so all in at €6,457.

That said, although it is the largest expense of moving, it is important because a good agent can make you money, not cost you money. By that we mean you should hope for a good agent on a good fee because he will fight that much harder for you to achieve the best price for your property. A good agent can make as much as 5% difference on a sales price – well worth their fee!

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2. Estate Agents Expensesestate agent property marketing online

Another large expense can be the estate agent’s expenses. These are often demanded upfront my your agent to pay for advertising and marketing materials. That might include: online marketing, “For Sale” sign, printed brochures, professional photography and newspaper advertising.

The price you are charged for estate agent expenses varies depending on your house and the agent. But for a standard house in Dublin most agents will charge anywhere between €250 to €500 + VAT. For a larger house, over €500,000 for example, you will be looking at up to €1,000 and over €2,000 for a million euro house.

These fees are usually required before the agent will even put your property on the market. Or they will be added to your final bill. However, if you don’t sell your house for whatever reason (circumstances change, you can’t sell or don’t get the right price) you will still be charged these expenses.

So you’re out of pocket before the agent has done any work and without sure sign of achieving a happy result!

Or you could go with an agent like Churches who don’t charge any marketing expenses yet still provide top-class marketing for absolutely free. Click here to find out more about Churches Marketing…

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3. Solicitor’s Fees

Solicitor’s fees are often the next big expense when moving house although they are not as high as they once were. Solicitor’s fees used to be based on a percentage of the sales price – just like estate agent’s fees. However they have moved with the times and now most provide a flat-rate fee.

The conveyancing process is generally straight forward and rarely has an impact on the price achieved by the house – unlike the agent’s fee. So there is no need to incentivise a solicitor with a percentage or performance based fee.

Solicitor’s fees will still have a range depending on who you use and they do still vary it slightly depending on the value of the house. But you can expect an efficient and professional conveyancing solicitor to work on fees from around €1,500 + VAT. For a larger property you might be seeing a bill of €2,500 or if there are complexities to the title or permissions.

Expenses – Don’t forget their are usually a number of extra costs incurred by the solicitors in preparing your property for sale. These can include: legal searches, land registry fees, charges and other costs. This can come to another €1,000 quite easily.

Taxes – You solicitor will also at this time make sure all your outstanding taxes are handled. These have to be paid before your house can change hands. These may include: household charge, property tax, water tax etc.

Remember, if you are selling a house and buying a new one, your solicitor actually has two separate conveyances to complete. They might not charge you double but it might increase your costs from €1,500 to €2,500.


Only applicable on the house when you are buying, you won’t have to pay on the property you are selling.

Stamp Duty is now 1% of the purchase price of a property under €1,000,000 and 2% of the purchase price over €1,000,000. Stamp Duty used to be 6% in the boom so thank goodness it has come down and is not one of the biggest expenses any more.

See Myhome.ie Stamp Duty Calculator

5. Mortgage CostsESTATE AGENT COSTS (3)

Be aware that there will usually be some administrative costs with your mortgage provider when moving home. If you are leaving your bank or paying off your loan early there may be some charges or penalties.

If you are just moving house and staying with them, there will still be some charges covering the legal work as it is similar to a conveyance. You solicitor should handle this all for you but make sure you confirm with the bank what your fees might be.

Those are the major expenses you will incur when selling your property. Now here is a shortlist of some of the other costs you

6. BER Certificatemoving house costs BER certificate

Before your house can even be put on the market, you will need a Building Energy Rating certificate which will cost between €150 – €300 depending on the size of the house. This rating tells potential buyers how energy efficient your house is and are now required by law.

This is one of the only expense we at Churches can’t help you avoid (even though we don’t charge you anything upfront) but we can recommend some very competitive assessors and help arrange all the inspections etc.

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Find Out More:

  • What is a BER Certificate?
  • How much does a BER cost?
  • How is a BER calculated?[/alert]

7. RemovalsRemovals two men and a truck

Many people get so concerned with all the other major expenses that they forget about the process of phyically moving house! It can be one of the most stressful parts of the whole process but it doesn’t have to be.

You generally have a choice with moving house: do it yourself or hire a removals company.

Although a lot of people don’t budget for it and think they will just muddle through it with friends and family. But once you’ve gone through all the hassle of packing, hiring a van, breaking your back and getting stressed out – you might have been better hiring a professional.

A professional team like our friends at Two Men & A Truck will not only give you packing supplies they can also pack, load, unload and unpack all your items for you. Plus with their expert teams and trucks of every size they can do it for you in record time. A professional removal of a house may cost between €600 to €1,000.

Storage is also an option. Sometimes you will want to move some items to temporary storage while you sell or more. Two Men partners Nesta self-storage are a great option too for whether it’s just a few months or you want to declutter and keep items in storage for the longer term.

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Find Out More:

  • Should I hire a professional removals company?
  • Pros & Cons of moving house yourself.[/alert]

8. Buying CostsESTATE AGENT COSTS (2)

Other than Stamp Duty there are a few other costs you should consider when you move in regard to the house you are buying:

Survey – You should always get a surveyor to look over the house you are buying to ensure it is in good order and to flag any costly problems in advance. An average survey will cost between €250 – €500 but it will be more if it is a bigger property.

Valuation – If you are buying with a mortgage, your bank will send a valuer around to confirm the price you are paying for the property is reasonable by today’s prices. You have to pay this fee, which is generally €100 to €150.

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Find Out More:

  • What are the costs of buying a house?
  • What type of survey is right for my house?[/alert]

9. Other Costs 

We’ve covered the major costs of moving house, but there are always a bunch of little expenses that you may incur along the way. Here’s a list so you can keep track of what may need to be in the budget:

  • Preparing for Sale – You may decide you want to spruce up your home before selling it. That might include a thorough deep clean by professional cleaners (€150 – €200 try Hassle.com) or hiring a carpet cleaner to freshen up high-traffic areas (€38 for 48-hour hire at Woodies). Tidying your garden is a good option too, to improve the curb appeal. You can hire a general clearance for as little as €100 or hire a skipbag and do it yourself.
  • Decluttering the House – If you have a lot of junk… *Ahem*… we mean “personal items”… in the house, it would be better to have it somewhat cleared before putting it on the market. You have two options: take it to the tip or put it in short term self-storage.
  • Paying outstanding bills – You will have to make sure all property tax and household taxes are paid, but don’t forget you will be closing up all your utility bills when you move. Make sure to take meter readings on the final day of closing so you can report these to your utility company and the new owners.
  • Breaking Contracts – sometimes you might not be able to move your telephone, TV and broadband supplier with you. Check if you can or cannot and see if they will charge you any fees to exit your contract early.
  • Pet-Sitting Fees – Moving house can be stressful on our pets too. Why not put them in with a pet sitter while you get unpacked and settled so they’re not missing a dog bowl and their bed for the first night while you find which box it’s in.

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Adding up the cost of moving

So that’s our full list. Let’s add up the cost of moving for the example of selling a €350,000 house and buying a €500,000 house to give you a guide on the average costs

  • Estate Agent Fees – €6,457 incl. VAT
  • Estate Agent Expenses – €615 incl. VAT (or €0 with Churches)
  • Solicitor’s Fees – €3,075 incl. VAT
  • Solicitor’s Outlays – €1,500
  • Stamp Duty – €5,000
  • Mortgage Fee – €600
  • BER Certificate – €150
  • Removals – €750
  • Survey – €250
  • Valuation – €150
  • Other Costs – €500

TOTAL COST – €19,047

So that’s almost €20,000 in total costs and expenses to move house and buy a new one. So from the €350,000 you achieve on the sale of your existing property, you will only have €330,000 remaining – therefore you will need an additional €170,000 by way of savings or new mortgage to buy the new house for €500,000.

Make sure you add up the costs in advance before you decide to put your house on the market![/alert]

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Ben Thompson

A qualified Chartered Surveyor with a decade of experience with some of the world's most prestigious property companies, Ben leads our Blackrock sales team and pioneers our marketing platform.