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Understanding 1031 Exchange Closing Costs

December 20, 2023

Beyond IRS compliance, a successful 1031 exchange requires proper planning to maximize the exchange funds. That’s why it’s important to be aware of all the potential exchange expenses and closing costs before you start an exchange.

Closing costs in a 1031 exchange generally range between 2% to 5% of the property’s value. For instance, on a $100,000 property, you can expect closing costs to be around $2,000 to $5,000.

However, the exact amount may differ depending on several factors. Before you initiate an exchange, you should consult an experienced qualified intermediary and tax advisor as their expert guidance can help you make informed decisions.

With over 32 years of experience as the best-qualified intermediary in Los Angeles, California, Universal Pacific 1031 Exchange has assisted many investors in handling the complexities of property transactions worth over $100M. With a proven track record of success, our team of experts are always available to offer their experience in facilitating seamless exchanges. Take the first step by booking a free consultation with us today.

In this article, we’ll consider the meaning of closing costs, common costs associated with a tax-deferred exchange, and other things you need to know.

What are Closing Costs?

What are Closing Costs?

Closing costs refer to the various fees and exchange expenses incurred during the final stages of a property sale. These costs cover many services and processes necessary for completing the transactions and transferring property ownership of an investment property from the seller to the buyer.

Common Types of Closing Costs Involved in Property Transactions

  • Title Insurance Premium: This policy safeguards against potential issues with the property’s title, ensuring a clear and legal transfer of ownership.
  • Loan Origination Fees: These charges cover the lender’s administrative costs for processing the loan application and other loan processing fees.
  • Appraisal Fees: Before finalizing a replacement property purchase, investors often conduct appraisals and inspections to assess its value and condition and ascertain that the property’s worth matches the agreed price.
  • Escrow Fees: These fees cover the escrow agent’s services, as well as managing documents and exchange funds to pay during the replacement property transfer process.
  • Attorney Fees:  In some cases, legal professionals assist in reviewing contracts and ensuring legal compliance throughout the transaction and they may charge a fee for their services.
  • Property Taxes: Depending on the timing of the sale, both the buyers and sellers may need to pay their share of the prorated property tax payments up to the closing date.
  • Transfer tax: This refers to a government-imposed fee charged for the transfer of property ownership from the seller to the buyer.
  • Recording Fees: Charges for recording the real estate transaction in public records.

Closing Costs Specific to 1031 Exchanges

Closing Costs Specific to 1031 Exchanges

In the context of 1031 exchanges, specific closing costs relate to the nature of the tax-deferred real estate transaction. These exchange expenses are different from traditional property sales and play a key role in facilitating the exchange process while adhering to IRS regulations. These exchange expenses include:

  • Qualified Intermediary Fees: This refers to the compensation paid to a qualified intermediary who facilitates the exchange, and oversees compliance with IRS regulations throughout your exchange. You can take advantage of the affordable services we offer at Universal Pacific 1031 Exchange to minimize your exchange expenses. Reach out to us today to get started.
  • Property Inspection and Due Diligence Costs: These expenses are related to assessing the condition, legal status, and potential of a relinquished property before sale or replacement property before purchase.
  • Professional Fees: These are charges for services provided by professionals like real estate agents, attorneys, accountants, appraisers, or consultants. These fees can cover various tasks such as legal advice, contract preparation, negotiation assistance, and tax consultation.
  • Depreciation Recapture Tax Consideration: Depreciation recapture is a tax provision that comes into play when you sell a property for more than its adjusted tax basis and have previously claimed depreciation deductions on that property.

How to Calculate 1031 Exchange Closing Costs

How to Calculate 1031 Exchange Closing Costs

1. Identify the Type of Property Transaction: Determine whether you’re calculating closing costs related to a purchase, sale, or refinancing.

2. Gather Essential Information: Collect relevant details including the fair market value, loan costs and amount when applicable, and transaction details.

3. List Potential Closing Costs: Compile a comprehensive list of potential exchange expenses involved in the transaction. Also, find out local fees and rates associated with the transaction, as these can vary by location.

4. Estimate Fees and Expenses: Use the gathered information to estimate the costs associated with each item on your list. For instance, title insurance may cost a certain percentage of the property’s value, usually between 1% to 3%. Consult with a qualified intermediary or tax advisor prior to making payments, or use online tools to estimate these costs accurately

5. Calculate Total Closing Costs: Sum up all estimated expenses to arrive at the total closing costs. Ensure you include all potential fees to obtain a more accurate estimate. Again, tax advisors can help you identify possible tax liability so you don’t skip any fee.

6. Review and Compare Estimates: Compare your estimated closing costs with estimates provided by lenders or professionals involved in the transaction. This comparison helps identify any discrepancies.

7. Budget and Prepare: Once you have a comprehensive estimate, create a budget and allocate funds accordingly. We recommend that you prepare for these expenses in advance to ensure a smooth closing process.

Factors That Can Influence The Amount of Closing Costs

Factors That Can Influence The Amount of Closing Costs

The exact amount you pay for costs related to a 1031 exchange may be determined by a combination of factors which may include:

  • Property value
  • Transaction complexity
  • Qualified intermediary selection
  • Location of properties
  • Market conditions
  • Financing involvement
  • Appraisal and inspection requirements
  • Brokerage commissions
  • Time constraints
  • Tax planning complexity
  • Negotiation and communication skills

Real Case Studies: How Closing Costs Affect a 1031 Exchange

Real Case Studies: How Closing Costs Affect a 1031 Exchange

Gregory, a savvy investor, exchanged his rental apartment for a shopping complex in a tax-deferred exchange. He did his due diligence to estimate all potential costs. More importantly, Gregory engaged an affordable qualified intermediary who provided expert guidance and ensured IRS compliance throughout the process.

Unlike Gregory, Jones failed to consult a tax advisor and was not aware of transfer taxes, property taxes, security deposits, and some loan-related expenses when he exchanged his office building for land. Due to his negligence, these fees later came up unexpectedly for Jones, which later affected his exchange funds.

From these cases, you can see that it’s always recommended to seek guidance from experienced professionals before you start an exchange to maximize your exchange proceeds.


Understanding closing costs and planning for them ahead of your 1031 exchange helps you stay on course throughout the exchange process. If you’re not clear on the expenses involved, do not hesitate to reach out to us at Universal Pacific 1031 Exchange so you can be sure no cost will take you by surprise.

Call us at (866) 261-1962 to book a free consultation, discuss your needs, and start your exchange.

About The Author

Michael Bergman, CPA
Michael Bergman is a California licensed CPA and Real Estate Broker with over 32 years of experience in commercial real estate. Specializing in 1031 tax-deferred exchanges and financial oversight, his expertise is invaluable for complex real estate transactions. Michael’s unique blend of financial acumen and real estate knowledge positions him as a trusted advisor in the industry, offering sound advice and strategic insights for successful property management and investment.

Don’t let taxes hinder your property investment decisions. Connect with us today for a free, no-obligation 1031 exchange consultation. Let us help you navigate the process with ease.