How much does it cost to sell a house in South Australia?
If you’re planning to sell a house in South Australia, there’s a few key costs you’ll need to factor into your budget. Here we detail the main costs of selling a house, from real estate agent fees to conveyancing costs, and why these may vary depending on your situation.
Key costs to consider when selling your house in South Australia
How much it costs to sell a house in SA varies by location but there are some common key expenses:
Form 1 document
In SA, one key cost of selling a house is the Form 1. Also known as a Vendors Disclosure Statement, the Form 1 is a legal document outlining important information about a property for sale. Its purpose is to alert buyers to any details about the property that could impact their decision to purchase it. Sellers are required by law to serve the Form 1 to the buyer at least 10 days before settlement, although agents typically organise it before advertising the sale.
How much a Form 1 costs depends on your property and who’s preparing your form. Government searches required to fill in the form all incur a fee – these vary by property type. Search fees are additional to your agent’s preparation fee, which some include in their overall charge, while others may outsource the work to a conveyancer.
If you’re selling without an agent, you’ll need a conveyancer or specialist Form 1 service, who’ll also charge a preparation fee on top of the searches – some by the hour.
All up, a Form 1 can cost $900+ which may sound expensive, but it’s worth noting an incomplete or misleading Form 1 can result in the buyer pulling out of the sale and/or costly fines. Working with a good agent can lessen the risk of mistakes in your Form 1. They’ll guide you through what information you need to provide and ensure your vendor's statement is thoroughly prepared.
Agent fees and commission in South Australia
Average real estate commission fees are around 2.35% in SA, compared to the national average of 2% to 2.5%.
Like elsewhere in Australia, how much commission you could pay is influenced by your location. Comparing real estate commission fees among urban and rural areas highlights the differences:
- In the Adelaide suburb Glenelg, average agent commission rate is 1.94%, equating to $15,520 commission on a $800,000 property sale
- In the rural town Port Wakefield, 98.7 kilometres north of Adelaide, average agent commission rate is 2.88%, equating to $23,040 commission on a $800,000 sale
- In the historic town Hahndorf, average agent commission rate is 2.5%, equating to $20,000 real estate agent commission on a $800,000 sale
As this shows, a few percentage points translates into thousands of dollars in real estate commission fees, but this shouldn’t suggest simply looking for the agent with the lowest rate. It’s better to find an experienced local agent you can trust and negotiate a mutually agreeable deal.
Before negotiating, it’s important to know how agent fees are structured. Commission is a percentage of the sale price agents receive for selling your home but doesn’t cover associated costs, like marketing. Some agents quote higher commission rates that include advertising while others quote low and keep marketing costs separate – so always ask what is and isn’t included.
Real estate agent commission is usually either fixed or tiered. Fixed is the most common and is simply your sale price multiplied by the commission rate. Tiered is an incentive-based structure that rewards the agent with a higher rate for every dollar they get over your agreed amount. A tiered commission motivates your agent to work for the best possible sale price.
Selling your property at auction requires hiring a professional auctioneer, which can cost between $200 to $1,000 in SA. Auctions also demand extensive marketing campaigns which are typically more expensive than for private treaty sales. On average, a $700,000 house can cost between $6,000 and $9,000 to advertise for auction.
If you're looking to sell your home anytime soon, it's a good idea to calculate the cost of selling your home to avoid any surprises.
Conveyancing costs in South Australia
Conveyancing fees can cost anywhere from $500 to $2,200 depending on your property, but $800 is a good general estimate. Your quoted conveyancing fee may not include additional expenses, such as administrative or transaction fees, so be sure to ask for a breakdown of all possible charges before you sign.
When planning to sell, it’s wise to budget for potential marketing costs as not all agents include these in their commission structure. In SA, marketing costs can vary from $400 to $5000, depending on the size of your campaign.
Additional costs + why these costs are also worth investing into
Preparing your house for sale can help boost your selling price. Buyers are more willing to pay for a well-maintained home that feels ready to move into. You don’t need to go overboard – some of the most value-adding preparations are simple repairs, garden maintenance and professional home staging. Minor cosmetic updates can be just as effective as big renovations and can cost under $2,000.
Keeping track of all these costs and processes can be a lot to remember, but OpenAgent's ultimate property guide can help you stay organised and on top of it all.
Other factors that can alter the cost of selling a house in South Australia
These additional factors can also affect how much it costs to sell a house:
In high density locations where there’s more competition amongst agents, commission rates tend to be lower while rural areas with fewer agents have higher rates. As we saw earlier, commission is around 1.94% in metropolitan Adelaide compared to 2.88% in rural Port Wakefield.
If you have an unusual property or one that’s only going to appeal to a small number of buyers, your agent will have to work harder to sell it. This will likely incur a higher commission rate for their time and efforts.
Method of sale (private or auction)
Selling at auction can cost more than selling through an agent due to auctioneer’s fees and greater marketing costs.
You may be able to negotiate a lower commission rate if you’re selling a high value home as your agent’s fee will be more than enough to cover their efforts. Conversely, agents are less likely to reduce their rate for a lower value home.
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