Posted by B.L. Renfrow on May 31, 1999 at 19:47:12:
I was talking with a Canadian coworker the other day and when the conversation turned to the property she just bought in Ontario, I could hardly believe the attorney charges she paid, which apparently are quite typical for Ontario. Made me feel good about living in NY, the taxation capital of the US!
I have no suggestions how you could get around those seemingly exhorbitant charges, but I can certainly appreciate how it could put a damper on investment there.
Here in NY closings are handled by attorneys as well, not title companies. Mine charges about $300 to represent me as seller, $425 if I’m the buyer, or $550 for both. That includes title search and examination, preparation and review of all documents, filing all the stuff at the courthouse, use of his office space for the actual closing, etc.
Closing costs, in addition to the attorney fees, would include such things as transfer tax (which is significant here), mortgage tax (if applicable), filing fees, deed recording, tax record search as well as things like survey, title insurance and inspection fee. In addition, if one is obtaining an institutional mortgage loan, you can add a committment fee, processing fee and PMI (with certain loans). So while it is not a set percentage, closing costs do obviously depend to some extent on the purchase price. I assume the costs are less in those states where closings are handled by title companies and escrow agents and every aspect of the transaction is not taxed to death.