Buying or selling a home? Jason Compton can help.

Buying a home is stressful for a lot of people, but it's not very confusing with some planning ahead of time. I like to furnish buyers with an overview of the whole deal so they understand exactly what they can expect. These are my nine steps to purchasing a home. When you're ready to get started, just contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm happy to answer questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 – Prepare to purchase a home
There are a lot of things you'll want to do before commencing your home search. You'll probably want to form an outline of must-haves, get an idea of what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in, and start planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than 1/3 of your net monthly income is a good rule of thumb to go by.

Step 2 – Get in touch with a real estate agent in Lexington
This is where Jason Compton can help. We can book a time to meet so we can talk about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about the mortgage and housing industries, other economic factors that could potentially affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Lexington area.

I can also assist you with getting started on your loan. There are some excellent mortgage professionals in Lexington, and I work with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with deciding which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Start house hunting
After our initial meeting, I'll start finding houses on the market that meet your needs. I'll preview most of the houses and eliminate the duds, and then we'll book appointments to view the houses when it's convenient for you.

When we tour the homes, I'll show you the positive features and negative ones. I'll also ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. As a rule, buyers change their list of must-haves as we tour houses and some items become far more essential than others. If such is the case, I'll go back through the listings once more and trim it down to the home you've been dreaming about.

Step 4 – Know the market
My understanding of the Lexington housing market is an essential factor in your house search. I am familiar with all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can alert you to some neighborhoods are "hot" and call for prompt action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for more examination.

As we view houses, I'll make sure to communicate if the seller's asking price has room for bargaining or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be careful and make sure you ask lots of questions, as every REALTOR will claim to know the market. If things don't add up, contact me at (803) 957-5566 or e-mail me at , and I'll be more than happy to answer any questions you have. My market expertise will help you stay a step ahead through the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the house you've been looking for
I'm sure we'll find your dream home in the Lexington area. When we do, I'll thoroughly create your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be made to suit your needs and the home. We'll include several contingencies, such as getting financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.

When presenting your offer, you'll probably need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to the home seller to secure an offer to buy the property and is often put towards the closing costs. If your offer is accepted by the seller, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days after. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Most contracts don't close on the first offer, and it's really common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this alarm you. We'll consider whether or not to consent to the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and go on.

How aggressively we negotiate the contract depends on market conditions. We'll also work within your financing limits. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a contract that's best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain your loan
Once we sign the final contract, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you've been pre-approved, this shouldn't take very long at all. However, you should to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll manage all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your mortgage lender will furnish you with a Loan Estimate (LE) of your closing costs within three days of receiving your loan application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs from your lender within three days of taking your loan application. The estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a strict range of accuracy, and I'll review the estimate and let you know if everything looks all right.

Then we'll close on your house. This should occur at a title company or escrow office and will most likely be a smooth and comfortable affair.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, make sure you call me at (803) 957-5566 or e-mail me at .

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