There are a few different types of expenses for buyers to prepare for, in addition to the down payment.  If you offer $100,000 with a 20% down conventional loan, there's more to the story than showing up at the closing with a check for $20,000.

In a cash deal, closing costs for a buyer are cheap and minimal.  The real costs come with getting a mortgage.   When working with a lender, the loan officer is required to provide a good faith estimate of all these costs, around the time that the loan application is completed.

A lender's lawyers would not likely allow them to publish a projection of costs like this, but here we are just discussing the costs that I have seen as typical over my real estate career.   Costs vary significantly, but can be broken down in to these categories:

  1. Mortgage costs:  Origination Fee, Processing Fee, Appraisal Fee, Discount Points, etc
  2. Closing/Title costs: Lender's policy, title search and abstract, closing fee
  3. Other Costs of buying property:  Home Inspection, Homeowners insurance, pro-rated property taxes, prorated HOA fees & start up fees, Survey, Termite inspection

At the time that you contact the Mortgage Loan Officer for a prequalification letter, ask for a rough idea of the closings costs that you need to anticipate.   Often, you can negotiate the seller to contribute a concession towards your closing costs.   This strategy will minimize your cash used up front, and can preserve your cash for things like movers, furniture, and reserves.