Who pays the seller?

I am very confused about a few basic real estate points. I am guessing that most people know the answers to these questions already because I can’t find them posted anywhere, nor have I found them in a few books I have read. I’d be joyous for any help.
Who pays the seller for their house upon sale? Does the bank give them the full amount that they’ve sold the house for? Does the bank pay them in small amounts or one lump sum? Does it have to do with how much equity they have in the house?
Also, where does the realtor’s commission and closing costs come from? The down payment?
I’m trying to find out the answers to these questions and am not having any luck by researching them online or in books so far (although I have found alot of other great info on the way.) I’d like to be able to go through realtors sometimes to aquire properties, but I’d like to be able to creatively finance without using the realtors comission. (I like to feel like everyone will be benefitting right off the bat upon the purchase.)
Also, through a realtor is it possible to ask (when presenting an offer to buy) that the owner may possibly finance? If the owner agrees is it the buyer who would pay the realtor?
And…lastly…can one research the title and lookup any liens themselves without having to find a lawyer or title company? I don’t need to know how, I just want to know if it can be done and if it would be legal.
Sorry for all the questions but I’m extremely new to this and have no idea how mortgages, banks, realtors, etc work. I know the concepts of what to look for but am clueless when it comes to financial stuff. :oops:

Thank you so much for your time.

Michelle the newbie.


At closing, you will pay your down payment to the title company and your bank or mortgage company will pay the rest to the title company. The title company will then pay the existing lien holders, the lawyer, the state (fees), the real estate agent, etc. and then anything that is left over goes to the seller. This is the usual scenario, but there are others depending on the particular circumstances of the deal. You can always ask if the seller will finance the property, especially if the property has no existing mortgage. If the owner agrees to finance the deal, the realtors fee usually comes out of the down payment. In some instances, the down payment may not cover all of the fees, so the seller may actually have to pay to sell the property.

“And…lastly…can one research the title and lookup any liens themselves without having to find a lawyer or title company?”
Yes, you can go to the court house and look up information on the property and the owners/sellers to find out about the liens and transfers of the property. You should do this if you are going to buy the property “sub2” or if it is “pre-forclosure”. There may be other times that you would need to do this, but I can’t think of them at the moment. If you are going to buy a property the conventional way, the title company will do this for you as part of their service to you. They must do it before a title policy can be issued.


Thank you very very much. :mrgreen:
That was exactly what I needed to know. :mrgreen:

Michelle the Newbie