Home Selling in 98107>Question Details

In Bellevue, Home Seller in 98107

what are the average realtor fees in bellevue, wa and what is the average excise tax?

Asked by In Bellevue, 98107 Mon Jun 21, 2010

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In Bellevue

National Average is 6 %.....Really?
Let's check with the Department of Justice

"Over the past decade the average commission rate has remained relatively steady between 5.0 and 5.5 percent."....http://www.justice.gov/atr/public/real_estate/save.htm

I would also suggest you read this from the Dept. of Justice...
Competing Models of Real Estate Brokerage ... http://www.justice.gov/atr/public/real_estate/models.htm

In Fact you should read through all the info on the DOJ site, it is concise easy to understand and also includes the causes and results of the DOJ vs NAR lawsuit....http://www.justice.gov/atr/public/real_estate/index.htm

Agents are selling Services and are in competition for your Business, it is your responsibility to be a Smart Shopper. ......It is your Transaction and your Money.

Good luck
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
Commissions are negotiable. Your best bet is to meet with an agent you are interested in and interview them.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
I don't think it is a simple answer at all - I am impressed by the respectful discussion regarding what is such a sensitive issue for many in our field. You already got the excise tax rate below, then there is title and escrow fees on top of that - those depend on the companies, these services are obtained by (Ballard Escrow is pretty great in your neighborhood), the price of the home and complexity of the transaction for the most part. Commissions are flexible and negotiable and that is the bottom line.

You need to make sure to find out what all is included in that commission so there are not surprises. For instance, I hire professional to come in and do photography, cleaning, Staging, etc. I am willing to negotiate the fees, but need some kind of commitment that the seller isn't going to back out after I put so much money out. In 98107, the market is pretty good and you should be able to negotiate your commission rate based on the ability to generate a faster sale. Don't pay extra for the other items - you shouldn't need to.

Why not have a few agents over and ask them what they would charge you and tell them what you have in mind? We aren't easily allowed to discuss "standard" or "average" commissions for fear of getting slapped with an antitrust suit - plus again because commissions so directly affect our livelihood and ability to make a living it can be a sensitive issue.

Good luck!
Web Reference: http://www.cooperjacobs.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 23, 2010
Rob..So in your Opinion what is the "Simple Answer" to this "Simple Question"?..Seriously?

Patrick Flynn.."I always get a kick out of the threads that come out of these Q&A's...I think some even answered the question!"

And you answered, contributed what to the Question?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 22, 2010
Excise is 1.78%. As for commissions. By law they are always negotiable.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 22, 2010
Dunes, I don't think the average consumer, or even the very well informed consumer, is all that likely to know of the distinction between various MLS systems in different parts of the country. I would agree that practices that tend to keep out different types of brokers are anti-competitive, but doesn't mean it has much relevance up here. After all, the question was related to Bellevue.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 22, 2010
I always get a kick out of the threads that come out of these Q&A's...I think some even answered the question!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 22, 2010
Apologize for the deleting and reposting...In the first comment I linked to an article that had a April 2010 published date but then I noticed it had comments responding to it from 2008...Made it Questionable IMO..

Mack..Hud deciding to pay 6% does not in any way make 6% the Standard rate, do they pay 6% on ALL Hud property for sale Transactions..What do Banks pay?

"As to Dunes comments, I don't think the DOJ suit had much impact on us locally."

I merely mentioned the DOJ/NAR case information is on the site I provided the link for along with a lot of other information....I think
Consumers/the public are intelligent enough to read the info and decide for themselves.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
I think the last study put the national average of amount paid for commissions at 5.1% vs. what has been said below, and that's probably about right. The average price of a home in 98107 would probably warrant a flat fee plus whatever you offer the buyer agent. Most agents are somewhat flexible depending on price and condition of the property and whether you are pricing it fairly in today's market. The average sale should take 60 days or so to get an offer if it is priced appropriately. If you overprice it, that could be more work and cost a bit more for the longer anticipated time frame.

Also condition is important, since some of us include staging in the commission. Rarely does a listing need no help in that regard in this market.

Given the average age of homes in 98107, you may need to reserve something against the home inspection request expectation. Any of us can stop by and give you a quote and a net proceeds sheet showing all of your closing costs.

Instead of wasting a lot of time seeing everyone one at a time...maybe you can have a Broker's Open and invite brokers to come, view the property all at the same time and submit a written proposal. It's a bit out of the box...but might be better than trying to choose one from the limited info we can give you without having seen the "product".

I think 8% for all costs might be a good target range assuming it is a house and not a condo.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
Thing is, Dunes, HUD has essentially established 6% as the "standard" commission for short sales. Go figure.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
The excise tax is 1.78%, and the "average" realtor fee is (a neutrino must have hit the packet in transmission).
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
sorry Jeffrey, but your canned-response is almost verbatim from your training isn't it? Yes, ... discount agents do sometimes fall under the ... "you get what you pay for" category, but traditional agents charging 6% can also be bad. Unfortunately, this is an industry where the amount you pay the agent has very little reflection on the quality of work they do. Agents and brokerages that don't charge the full 6% do indeed need to sell more to make the same money as a 6% agent does, but how does that directly correlate to quality of work and services provided? Jimmy Johns sandwhiches is lightening fast and pretty well priced compared to say... subway. Does that directly correlate to an inferior product? No ...I actually think they're stuff is better than the competition.

This isn't selling electronics where usually the more you pay the higher quality the components you get. Real estate is an industry where the person delivering the service and the system they work under matters a great deal and what you get varies hugely from agent to agent. What you pay shouldn't matter. It all depends on what you think you as the seller will get for your money. Interview different agents, ...ask about what they do and how they do it. Ask them to justify their cost and don't fall for decades old canned-responses.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
Agent commissions are negotiable and you should interview a couple of local agents. The excise tax is 1.78% of the selling price paid by the Seller.

Jeff Dickinson, ABR, ASR, CDPE, SRS
REMAX Eastside Brokers, Inc.
Bellevue, WA
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
excise tax is 1.78% for the king co. the realtor fees usually do not vary with cities. There is not a standard realtor fees but by practice, usually a listing fee is 3% and a buyer's agent fee is 3%
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 30, 2010
15 responses for such a simple question? Seriously?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 22, 2010
Dunes, I think that once HUD established a commission rate for a large number of transactions, it became difficult for the government to argue that a bunch of agents sitting at the bar are engaged in anti-trust violations.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
Commissions are negotiable but average is 3% to the listing agent & 3% to the buyer's agent. Excise tax is 1.78%. Other expenses to sell a home are title insurance & escrow.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
The idea that 6% is the average is rather interesting. It must refer to the mode (most common) and not the mean. For it to be the mean it would indicate that there are a lot of agents charging more than 6%, which I don't think is the case at all.

I would echo someone's comments about focusing too much on cost. A good agent can be cheap and a bad agent expensive. Sort of like cars.

As to Dunes comments, I don't think the DOJ suit had much impact on us locally. Our MLS is a bit different than many others and didn't have many, if any, of the practices that the DOJ complained of. We've had a lot of discount brokers for a long time.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
Home seller in Bellevue
As many have mentioned commissions are not set. The average sales commission is 3% and I believe it is important to offer this to get all showings possible. Listing commissions will vary depending on company and services. As a few have said best to consult with a few agents. What services do they offer for their fees? What are their clients saying about their services? What is their experience? Are they familiar with your marketplace and price range? How will they help you in pricing and showcasing your property? Do they offer staging services at no cost to you and staging materials?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
The tax isn't an average, it is a given, as Nick pointed out.
I usually council sellers to budget between 9 & 10% of the listing price for settlement costs. This should cover the commisions, tax, Escrow and Title fees and provide a small contingency for unforseen items.
If you need to stage the home or make any improvements to establish a marketing advantage, the costs will rise from there.
Your Realtor will also be able to give you with a net-proceeds report on any offer amount that you entertain. As the numbers become more defined, the contingency should disappear.
Web Reference: http://www.nwhome.us
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
You will get a lot of the same answers from all of us, so no need to repeat again. You really want to talk with and interview some agents and go from there. there are so many more factors involved in how much you net as a seller that are more important then the commission.. I would be happy to consult with you about some of these things.

I have suggested in past posts, and will continue to suggest in the future, that as a seller, you Google every agent that responds to your question here on Trulia, learn as much as you can about who they are online, read their client testimonials, so you know what their clients are saying about them, and then give us each a call and just ask us why we think you should work with us instead of another agent. Then, pick the best fit for you and let them go to work for you with the skill and knowledge that they have so that you can net the most amount of money possible for your home. I hope to hear from you soon.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
6% is the national average. 3% for listing broker and 3% for selling broker. You may find a discount broker that will offer a 1% or a Flat isting fee. However, I would caution you to sign with a broker that discount their services. Discount broker's work on and focus on volume not always quality. If a discount broker is eager to cut their bottom line, what will they do to yours? You pay for what you get! 1.78% to King County for excise tax and minimal escrow and title fee's. 8.2% before any seller concessions is a good rule of thumb for a sellers cost of sale. Good Luck!!
Web Reference: http://www.nwssg.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
The average commission percentage for full-service real estate agents in Bellevue is 3% of the sales price. Above $1 million that tends to drop to 2.5%. Excise taxes are 1.78% of the sale price (payable by Seller).

Good questions!

-Nick Glant
NWG Real Estate LLC
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
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