The US has some of the highest commissions in the world

Miami /
Oct.October 07, 2016 10:30 AM

The United States is among the most expensive countries to sell a home, according to a new report.

In the U.S., commissions on home sales averaged 5.5 percent. Mexico topped the list with an average of 7.5 percent, the Wall Street Journal reported. On the flip side, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Singapore and the Netherlands were the most affordable countries to buy a home with commissions as low as 1.5 percent.

Surefield surveyed brokerages in 32 countries and compared them to similar findings in 2002. Since then, the majority of countries surveyed reported lower commission rates, including China, where commissions averaged 2 percent now compared to 7.5 percent in 2002.

While the rates have declined steadily every year since 1991 in the United States, it’s been a minimal change. Real Trends reports that in 1991, the average commission on a home sale in the U.S. was 6.1 percent compared to 5.3 percent in 2015, according to the Wall Street Journal.

They can be even higher for condo sales, depending on market conditions. The Related Group raised commissions for two preconstruction towers in Brickell up to 10 percent in early 2016 in an effort to sell out.

The U.S. has kept its commissions high likely because of the buyer’s agent. Most countries only use seller’s agents. And in Japan and Hong Kong, commission rates rose, probably due to their new use of the two-agent system. [WSJ] – Katherine Kallergis


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