How To Buy a House in Oklahoma
January 30, 2023
Are you considering buying a house in Oklahoma in 2023? Congratulations! Buying a home is an exciting process, but it can also be intimidating. It requires research, planning, and a lot of organization.
If you’re a first-time home buyer in Oklahoma, you don’t need to feel overwhelmed. Luckily, we have created a blog post that goes through everything you need to know about the home-buying process. Here are the nine steps to buying a house in Oklahoma in 2023.
9 Steps To Buying a House in Oklahoma
Step 1: Save For The Down Payment
The down payment is typically required by the mortgage lender and is a lump sum of cash that you will need to pay the seller on closing day. Different mortgage lenders have different requirements for the down payment, but typically you will need to have 3.5% – 20% of the total purchase price. For example, at the average Oklahoma home price of $$190,568, a 20% down payment would cost $38,114.
First-time home buyers have a common misconception that they need to make a 20% down payment to become eligible buyers for a mortgage loan. Not only is that belief not true but the average first-time buyer actually puts 7% down on a house.
Private Mortgage Insurance
The main benefit of putting 20% down on a house is to avoid having to make monthly payments for private mortgage insurance (PMI). There are now many lower and no-down payment mortgage options available for first-time buyers.
Conventional loans are the most common type of mortgage for first-time home buyers and the minimum down payment is usually 3% – 5%. Government loans like the Federal Housing Administration, Veteran’s Affairs, or the United States Department of Agriculture can have even less of a minimum down payment with some loans requiring nothing at all.
Step 2: Assess Your Financial Situation
Before you start shopping for a home, it’s important to assess your financial situation. This includes reviewing your credit score, debt-to-income ratio, employment history, and income. The recommended credit score when getting a mortgage is 620 or higher.
There are many closing costs associated with buying a house that will chip away at your wallet, so make sure to have a realistic expectation of the total costs and your own financial situation before buying a house in Oklahoma. Here are a few of the costs to consider when buying a house:
- Earnest Money Deposit
- Home Inspection
- Property Taxes
- Homeowners Insurance
- HOA Fees
Step 3: Get Pre Approved For a Mortgage
Once you’ve assessed your financial situation and saved for a down payment, it’s time to look at mortgages. Getting pre-approved by a mortgage lender is a great way to separate yourself from other home buyers.
Pre approval is the process where the lender checks your credit score, employment history, and financial information to determine if you are eligible for a mortgage loan up to a certain amount.
Many home sellers in Oklahoma will require buyers to get a pre approval letter before buying a house so it is important to start the process as early as possible.
Step 4: Choose The Lifestyle You Want
When you’re buying a house in Oklahoma, it’s important to consider the lifestyle you want. From rural communities to bustling cities, each neighborhood has a different vibe in Oklahoma.
Ask yourself what you are looking for in a lifestyle. Do you want to live in the city or the suburbs? Do you want a big house or a small condo? Do you want a yard or a low-maintenance home?
Asking yourself these questions will help you narrow down your search and find the perfect place to call home. These questions will also help you define a budget and what you’re willing to spend in total on a house.
Step 5: Start Working With a Real Estate Agent
Once you’ve decided on the lifestyle you want, it’s time to find a real estate agent to work with. Having a good real estate agent by your side helps to make sure that you don’t make any costly mistakes.
Real estate professionals have a comprehensive understanding of the home-buying process and the local real estate market. However, not all real estate agents are good at what they do and it can be difficult to find a reputable one.
If you want a streamlined way to find a good real estate agent, then you’ll want to work with a Negotiator. Negotiators are real estate agents that have all proven themselves to be top performers in their local real estate markets. They have closed a large volume of real estate deals and are skilled in the art of negotiation.
If you’re looking to buy an Oklahoma home and need help from a real estate agent who knows how to navigate these markets, search for an Oklahoma Negotiator here.
Step 6: Begin House Hunting
Most first-time home buyers would consider the house search to be the most fun part of the home-buying process. With the help of a real estate professional, you will be able to start exploring houses and neighborhoods that fit all of your criteria including location, size, price, and more.
Without a real estate agent, this step can take a lot of time and effort as you would need to find houses that are for sale, contact the sellers, and schedule tours.
Make sure to have a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves when you start looking at houses. This will help you to stay focused on your goals and not get caught up in the emotions of buying a house.
It can be easy to fall in love with a house that is under your budget or has a great backyard but if it doesn’t have everything that you need, then it probably isn’t the right house for you.
Step 7: Send an Offer
Making an offer is a crucial aspect of the home-buying process. The offer represents your interest in the property and will serve as the basis for all negotiations afterward. It sets the precedent for how the rest of the transaction will play out, so the offer needs to be well-structured and thought out.
An experienced real estate agent can help you put together a strong offer that protects your interests, engages the seller, and helps you get the home you want. There are a variety of components to an offer and if you’re preparing one, here are a few elements to include:
- Amount of money you want to offer on the house
- Amount of earnest money deposit
- Pre approval letter
- Expected closing date
- Expected Move-in date
- Deadline to respond
Step 8: Get an Inspection and Appraisal
After your offer is accepted, the home will need to be appraised to ensure that the price you’re paying is in line with the current market value. An appraisal is when a professional inspector does a thorough examination of the property to assess its true worth apart from the listing price.
An appraisal is usually required by the mortgage lender and once the appraisal is complete, you’ll be one step closer to finalizing your loan and getting the keys to your new home.
However, even though appraisals can reveal issues within the property the purpose is not to be a home inspection. It’s important to schedule a separate home inspection with a certified inspector to get a detailed report of the property’s condition.
Buying a house that has problems like a faulty roof or electrical wiring can be a nightmare and cost you a lot of money down the road. A home inspection will give you an accurate picture of the property’s condition so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not to move forward with the purchase. Many lenders also require inspections to finalize a loan.
Step 9: Close on the House
Once the inspection and appraisal have been completed, it’s time to close on the house. This is when you sign all of the paperwork and officially become the new owner of the home.
Many states require a real estate attorney to be present during the closing process so make sure to check local laws and regulations before you proceed. Once the closing is complete, you can begin to move in and start making your house, a home.