Your Guide to Buying a Home in Oklahoma
The Buying Process: A Summary
- Oklahoma is similar to most states, as a real estate transaction can be closed by an attorney, title company professional, agents, or even a lending expert.
- In Oklahoma, it’s common for buyers and sellers to share the closing costs, but the buyer usually pays the policy premium, while the seller pays the transfer tax. The lender often pays the mortgage tax.
- After reaching an initial agreement on price, you and the seller will need to work through basic negotiations and details.
- Before shopping for a home, you have likely been pre-approved for a mortgage. However, you will need to finalize the mortgage before making a purchase.
- The closing is usually completed with both parties together at the same table.
- Conforming mortgages in Oklahoma are under the base limits (lowest possible maximum) for the entire state. As of this writing, the conforming limits for a single-family home are $647,200.*
Buying a Home, Phase 1: Negotiating Repairs and Updates in Oklahoma
Once you reach an agreement on price, you may assume most of the work is done. This is not exactly right, as you still need to negotiate details such as inspections and repairs.
- When you have an offer accepted by a seller, you will both need to sign a contract, which commits both parties to the sale.
- You will now pay the “earnest money,” which is paid to an attorney or escrow agent, never to the seller.
- The signed contract is sent to the attorney or title company. When they receive the contract, they will begin a title search to make sure the property can be legally sold without ownership complications.
- You will now review disclosures, which are statements of known issues or problems with the property. Review these thoroughly, as they will be important in future negotiations.
- You can now perform inspections on the property. Most will prefer a general inspection, as well as mold, termite, and radon inspections.
- Depending on the outcome of inspections, you can deliver a document which in Oklahoma is called the “Notice of Treatments, Repairs, and Replacements.” The seller will then get estimates for repairing any issues uncovered during the inspection.
- You and the seller will negotiate on price changes and repairs until an agreement is reached. (On the rare occasion that an agreement cannot be reached, both parties can walk from the contract without penalty.)
- You may negotiate a residential service contract (also known as a “home warranty”) which covers the cost of repairs for a certain period, usually about 6 to 12 months.
Phase 2: The Oklahoma Mortgage Process
Although you have been pre-approved for a loan, you’ll have to go through the process of finalizing the mortgage. This process can take a long time, so it’s best to start as early as possible.
- The first step is to submit an application, which you can do alone or with the support of a lending professional. (A real estate agent may be able to help with this process as well if you have any issues.)
- You will receive a “good faith estimate” from the lender. This is an estimate, to the best of their knowledge, for the final closing costs.
- Even though you have been pre-qualified, you’ll need to send a variety of documents to make the mortgage official. Requested information may include:
- Pay stubs from the past two pay cycles.
- Tax returns for the past two years
- Bank statements on all accounts you own.
- Loan documents for any debts, including car loans, student debt, and credit cards.
- Financial disclosures for anything that impacts your financial situation.
- Explanation on any credit inquiries, which (statistically speaking) increase your chances of mortgage default.
- Information on any large deposits that are not part of your regular income.
- Gift letters if you will be using a cash gift as all or part of your downpayment.
- Repeat or updated information on any of the above. Lenders want as much information as possible, so don’t be surprised if they need more documents and information than you may have originally thought.
4. The lender will eventually issue a final decision. Assuming you are approved, you’ll receive a conditional approval letter. This states their willingness to support your purchase, but certain conditions will need to be met. These conditions often include an appraisal, as well as a requirement that you not make changes to your financial situation. (For example, no additional debts or loans.)
5. An appraisal will be ordered by the lender. Assuming the price for the property comes back strong, the purchase can move forward. If the appraisal is low, the purchase may need to be adjusted with a lower price or a higher downpayment.
6. You will need to order homeowner’s insurance to complete the transaction.
7. Hazard insurance may be required. This is to protect the property from storms, fire, and other potential damage. If necessary, flood insurance may also be required.
Again, this process is extensive. For the best results, and to create time for any additional problems, it’s best to start as early as possible.
Phase 3: The Final Oklahoma Real Estate Closing
The closing in Oklahoma will take place with both parties (buyer and seller) together at the same table. After all documents are signed, you can move into your new Oklahoma property.
- Before the closing, the attorney or title company should run a title search. This is usually done far in advance of the closing.
- A final cash figure is calculated. This is the amount that buyers need to bring (in the form of a cashier’s check) to complete the transaction.
- A final walkthrough will be performed to ensure no damage has been done to the property. This should be completed by you and your real estate agent right before the closing.
- At the closing, you and the seller will sign all documents, officially completing the transaction.
- You will now pay the remaining funds for your downpayment.
- The representative from the title company or the attorney overseeing the transaction will record the purchase with the city or county.
- You’ll receive the keys to your home and take possession of your new property!
Oklahoma Conforming Mortgage Limits
Conforming loan limits are set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. This group sets limits for government-supported loans (FHA, VA, etc. as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans) on a county-by-county basis. Most of the country is under the base limits, but high-priced areas are allowed higher loans.
In the state of Oklahoma, all counties are under the base limits. From the heart of Oklahoma City, the state capital and largest city, to the most rural locations in Oklahoma, the limit for a single-family home is $647,200. It should be remembered that this is the limit for loans, not for purchase price. Also, not all buyers will qualify for this amount.
From the Ouaticha Mountains in the southeast corner to the Oklahoma Panhandle in the far west, the limit of $647,200 applies.
You can use a conforming loan to purchase a multiunit property in Oklahoma. The limit for a two-unit property is $828,700. A three-unit is $1,001,650, while a four-unit property has a conforming loan limit of $1,244,850.
There are other loans available, including jumbo loans, which allow for higher amounts. If you need to make a larger purchase, contact our team for information on Oklahoma jumbo loans.
*Note: Conforming limits are continually changing. These numbers were accurate as of this writing, but may have changed. For accurate and up-to-date loan limits, please contact our team.