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Closing Costs Keep Pace With Home Prices and Purchase Volumes

CoreLogic’s ClosingCorp has released its most recent Purchase Mortgage Closing Cost Report, showing the national average for mortgage closing costs for a single-family property in 2021 was $6,905, including transfer taxes and $3,860 excluding transfer taxes. These amounts represent a 13.4% and 11.2% year-over-year increase.

The average U.S. home price increased by more than $50,000 in 2021, while the average purchase closing costs increased by $818 including taxes, and $390 excluding taxes. Despite an increase in the absolute dollar amounts of closing fees, closing costs as a percentage of home sales prices were down slightly from 2020.

Average purchase fees as a percentage of the average sales price in 2021 were 1.81% compared to 1.85% in 2020 and when taxes are excluded, were 1.01%, down from 1.06% in 2020.

“As the mortgage industry comes off two years of record-low interest rates and red-hot consumer demand, lenders are now pivoting to address increasing headwinds from higher loan origination costs and lower origination volumes,” said Bob Jennings, Executive of CoreLogic Underwriting Solutions. “The Mortgage Bankers Association recently reported lender origination costs show a 13.2% year-over-year increase, which corresponds closely to the 13.4% increase we are seeing on purchase mortgage closing costs. As the market tightens in 2022, it will be interesting to see how lenders and borrowers respond and how these key metrics move.”

Top State and Metro Takeaways:

  • The 2021 report shows the states with the highest average closing costs, including transfer taxes, were Washington, D.C. ($29,888), Delaware ($17,859), New York ($16,849), Maryland ($14,721) and Washington ($13,927).
  • The states with the lowest closing costs, including taxes, were Missouri ($2,061), Indiana ($2,200), North Dakota ($2,501), Wyoming ($2,589) and Mississippi ($2,756).
  • The most significant drivers to differences in closing costs were the types and percentages of imposed specialty and transfer taxes.
  • The states with the highest average closing costs, excluding taxes, were Washington, D.C. ($6,502), New York ($6,168), Hawaii ($5,879), California ($5,665) and Massachusetts ($4,904).
  • The states with the lowest closing costs, excluding taxes, were Missouri ($2,061), Indiana ($2,200), Nebraska ($2,210), Arkansas ($2,281) and West Virginia ($2,465).
  • At the metro level, those with the highest average fees with taxes were primarily in the Eastern region of the United States including Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts ($28,724); Bremerton-Silverdale-Port Charlotte, Washington ($16,003) and Salisbury, Maryland and Delaware; ($15,723).
  • Metros with highest average fees without taxes were in Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, California ($7,063); Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, Hawaii ($7,016) and San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California ($6,412).

Cost calculations include the lender’s title policy, owner’s title policy, appraisal, settlement, recording fees, land surveys and transfer tax. The calculations use home price data from CoreLogic to estimate closing costs for an average home at the state, core-based statistical area (CBSA) and county levels. Ranges, rather than single values, are used to more accurately capture fees associated with the real transactions.

On May 5, 2022, CoreLogic’s ClosingCorp will be releasing the annual 2021 Refinance Mortgage Closing Cost Report.

To read the full report, including charts and methodology, click here.

About Author: Demetria Lester

Demetria C. Lester is a reporter for DS News and MReport, with more than six years of writing experience. She has served as Editor-in-Chief at Northlake College and staff writer at her alma mater, the University of Texas at Arlington. She has covered events such as the Byron Nelson, Pac-12 Conferences, the Women in Dallas Film Festival, to freelance work with the Dallas Wings and D Magazine. Currently located in Dallas, Texas, she is an avid jazz lover and reader. She can be reached at demetria.lester@thefivestar.com.
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