Selling a home

From: Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

Costs of selling your home

Standard costs you can expect to pay include:

  • legal costs for services, including a statement of adjustment
  • a mortgage discharge fee to remove the collateral hold on your home (known as a “release” in Quebec)

A statement of adjustment requires the buyer to reimburse you if you prepaid your property taxes past the date on which you sell your home.

Other potential costs:

  • realtor or real estate agent fees
  • moving costs
  • staging fees, if you choose to stage your home yourself or pay a professional to make your home more appealing to potential buyers
  • cleaning fees, if you choose to hire a professional cleaner
  • mortgage prepayment penalties, if you sell your home before the end of your mortgage term

Learn more about when you may have to pay mortgage prepayment charges.

Setting your home’s sale price

To help you set the right sale price for your home, you can:

  • compare current sales listings of similar homes in your neighbourhood
  • ask a realtor to suggest a price

Remember to factor all of your selling costs into your sale price.

Selling your home with a realtor

If you use a realtor, you'll pay a commission based on the home’s sale price. Realtor commissions may be negotiable, but typically range from 2% to 6%, depending on your location.

A realtor can help you:

  • choose the right time to sell
  • list your home on an online site such as MLS (multiple listing service) or Centris
  • identify ways to increase the value of your home before you sell
  • determine an appropriate sale price
  • arrange showings and open houses
  • complete the necessary paperwork

Find out what to look for in a realtor and what to expect from a realtor.

Selling your home yourself

Some people choose to sell their home themselves. Selling your home on your own will save you having to pay a realtor a commission, but it will also mean taking on all of the responsibility for selling yourself.

Find out more about what’s involved in selling your home yourself.

Conditional home sales

Before you sell, consider whether you're willing to accept a “conditional sale.”

Often, a potential buyer will make an offer to buy your home on the condition they can withdraw it if certain terms aren't met, for example:

  • if the buyer isn’t satisfied with the home inspection
  • if the buyer can’t get mortgage approval
  • if the buyer isn’t able to sell their current property

Important documents your homebuyer may need

Once your home is on the market, gather any documents that will help you with the selling process, including:

  • deeds
  • surveys
  • property tax receipts
  • renovation contracts
  • transferable warranties

Tax implications of selling your home

In most cases, you won't pay tax on the money you make from selling your home if it was your principal residence every year since you bought it.

If you used your home to generate income, you must report the sale of your home on your tax return. For example, if you rented part or all of the property while you owned it, you must pay tax on the net proceeds of the sale.

Find out what tax rules could affect the sale of your principal residence and other real estate.

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