Buying real estate: who pays the agency fees?

Seller ? Buyer ? Who finances the fees paid to the professional involved in a real estate transaction? It all comes down to the signing of the sale mandate.

This is one of the questions that many buyers ask themselves when buying a property. Who will pay the real estate agent’s fees? The seller or the buyer?

If the amount of the fees is obligatorily indicated in the real estate advertisement, the latter must also specify whether they are chargeable to the seller or chargeable to the buyer.

Read the real estate ad carefully

The real estate agent is indeed required to display his rates in his real estate ads and his shop window.

If the agency fees are paid by the seller
In this case the property is sold at the price including agency fees (FAI) with the mention specifying the fee to be paid by the seller.

If the agency fees are to be paid by the buyer

In the case of a property for sale at the buyer’s expense, the amount of the agency’s fees is then specified as a percentage of the price in the advertisement.

A contract between the seller and the estate agent

A sale mandate is a bilateral contract between the owner of a property he wishes to sell and a real estate professional. It can be exclusive (only one agency will handle the sale of the property) or non-exclusive.

It must contain :

  • the identity of the people selling the property;
  • the references and contact details of the firm(s) in charge of the sale;
  • the designation of the property – verification of the title of ownership – ;
  • the selling price;
  • the amount of the remuneration;
  • the duration of the mandate – in general, an irrevocable period of 3 months, tacitly renewable for periods of one month -.

The sale mandate also includes important information, the choice of which is up to the seller: will the agency fees be paid by the seller or by the buyer? It is up to the seller to decide.

Be careful, because once signed, the mandate cannot be changed before a certain period of time.

It is up to the seller to decide

At the time of a sale, the real estate agent asks the seller to make a choice; what he decides will affect not the total amount the buyer will pay, but the purchase costs (notary fees and taxes) that the buyer will have to pay. It is therefore at the time of the signature of the mandate that everything will come into play.

What are the purchase costs?

The term “notary fees” is often used unfairly to refer to all the costs related to the purchase.

In reality, these include the following:

  • fees (sum received by the notary in return for a service for which the rate is regulated): 10%;
  • disbursements (sums advanced by the notary to assemble and draw up the notarial deed): 10%.
  • registration fees, i.e. the taxes due on any sale: 80%.

The notary fees are added to the real estate agency fees. The buyer must therefore bear in mind the additional costs to be paid when buying a property.

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