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Best Housing Grants for Low-Income Buyers in Oklahoma

Buying a home in Oklahoma can feel impossible, especially if your income is below average. Luckily, there are many mortgage programs, grants, and down payment assistance options available to low-income home buyers in the Sooner State. Learn more about your financing options in this financial guide.
Buying a home in Oklahoma can feel impossible, especially if your income is below average. Luckily, there are many mortgage programs, grants, and down payment assistance options available to low-income home buyers in the Sooner State. Learn more about your financing options in this financial guide.

Buying a home can seem like a pipedream for many Oklahoma residents. If you make less than the average salary in the Sooner State, the path to homeownership can feel challenging, expensive, and often, impossible.

Yet, realizing your dream of becoming a homeowner may be easier than you think. There are a variety of low-income home buyer programs in Oklahoma in place to help lower income individuals and families easily navigate through the home buying process. Low-income home buyer programs range from state to federally run financing opportunities, to little known private lending programs, each with their own flexible requirements and benefits.

If you’re ready to finally become a homeowner, don’t let your income hold you back. Use this guide to help you utilize the best resources available for low-income home buyers in Oklahoma.

Best Oklahoma Loans & Grants for Low-Income Home Buyers

There are many statewide home buyer programs available in Oklahoma to help prospective buyers realize their dreams of purchasing a home. No matter your specific income or financial situation, it’s best to start at the state level and explore all of the programs available to you.

Here are the top programs in Oklahoma low-income applicants should consider:

OHFA Home Buyer Assistance Programs

The Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency is a state-run program that offers many grants and mortgage packages to low-income or first-time home buyers. There are a variety of products available, but below are the most popular:

OHFA 4Teachers and OHFA Shield

This statewide program is designed to help teachers, firefighters, medical technicians, and law enforcement officers better afford to purchase a home. This program offers low mortgage rates and down payment assistance for eligible buyers.

Highlights include:

  • Down payment assistance (only 3.5% down payment required, which can be rolled into loan)
  • Quarter-percent rate reduction off daily mortgage rates

Requirements include:

  • Buyer must be in one of the above eligible professions
  • Property must be located in Oklahoma
  • Property must not exceed $276,100
  • Buyer income must not exceed state income requirements (varies by county)
  • Buyer must have 640 credit score or higher
  • Buyer must not exceed debt-to-income ratio requirements
  • Buyer must be a first-time homeowner

You can learn more about OHFA 4Teachers and Shield products here.

 

OHFA + Freddie Mac Home Possible Loan

This private loan is funded through OHFA approved resources and available to Oklahoma residents. This product specifically targets low-income home buyers and offers various assistance to make the buying process more affordable.

Highlights include:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages
  • 3.5% to 4% down payment assistance gift (provided by OHFA)
  • No loan review fees
  • $1,500 to $2,500 closing cost assistance (depending on income)

Requirements include:

  • Buyer must have 640 credit score or higher
  • Buyer income must not exceed state income requirements (varies by county)
  • Buyer must meet lender specific requirements

To learn more about this loan, buyers should reach out to an OHFA approved lender.

OHFA DREAM

Low-income buyers who already have a lender or who find better rates and discounts through other financing options are still eligible to apply for OHFA DREAM down payment assistance. This down payment assistance product is available to both existing homeowners and first-time home buyers in Oklahoma.

Highlights include:

  • 3.5% to 4% down payment assistance gift (not required to be paid back)

Requirements include:

*A version of this program, entitled GOLD offers 3.5% down payment assistance in the form of a gift to be used with the 4Teachers or Shield mortgage options.

You can find out more about state provided mortgage assistance grants and loan options in Oklahoma here.

Learn More: Everything You Need to Know About Low-Income Home Loans.

Best Federal Mortgage Options for Low-Income Buyers

Federal mortgage programs make it easy for low-income and first-time home buyers to afford the up-front costs of buying a home. Most of these programs specifically target first-time home buyers, though there are options available to help existing Oklahoma homeowners purchase a new primary residence.

FHA loans, VA loans, and USDA loans are the three most popular federal financing programs available for low-income home buyers in Oklahoma.

FHA Loans

All across the country FHA loans are popular for first-time home buyers. In Oklahoma FHA loans are often one of the most affordable and easily obtained mortgages for low-income first-time home buyers. With low credit score requirements and affordable down payment options, FHA loans are a great way for low-income applicants to realize their homeownership dreams.

FHA loans highlights include:

  • Fully backed by the U.S. federal government
  • Low down payment options (3.5% requirement for buyers with a 580+ credit score and 10% requirement for buyers with a 579 or lower credit score)
  • Access to low and fixed interest rates
  • Option to roll closing costs into the mortgage amount

FHA loan requirements include:

  • Buyer must be a first-time home buyer
  • Buyer must purchase private mortgage insurance
  • Buyer must have proof of steady job history

VA Loans

If you’re a low-income applicant living in Oklahoma and are also a current or former member of the military, a VA loan may be your most beneficial mortgage option. VA loans are available to all Oklahoma military members, whether they are existing or first-time home buyers. The benefits of VA loans are often even better than FHA loans.

VA loan highlights include:

  • Fully backed by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs
  • No down payment required
  • No private mortgage insurance required

Requirements of VA loans include:

  • Buyer must have a credit score of 620 or higher
  • Buyer must pay a funding fee of 2.15% (which can be rolled into the mortgage)

USDA Loans

Most home buyers in Oklahoma purchase homes outside of cities, opting to live in the nearby suburbs, smaller towns, or other rural places. USDA loans help low-income first-time home buyers purchasing a home in a rural area better afford property with down payment assistance and low mortgage insurance options.

USDA loan highlights include:

  • No down payment required
  • Lowest private mortgage insurance rates and premiums on the market

USDA loan requirements include:

  • Property must meet location requirement (designated rural area in Oklahoma)
  • Buyer must have a credit score of 640 or higher
  • Buyer’s Income must not exceed the USDA limits
  • Buyer must purchase private mortgage insurance

FHA, VA, and USDA loans are three of the most helpful federal mortgage options available to low-income home buyers living in Oklahoma. A full list of federal mortgage programs designed to help low-income and first-time home buyers can be found here.

Learn More: The Complete Guide to FHA Loans By State

Best Private Lender Programs in Oklahoma for Low-Income Home Buyers

When most home buyers think about mortgages and down payments, they think of banks and high, 20% down payment requirements. These mortgages are traditional, private lender mortgages traditionally granted by banks, credit unions, and other major financial institutions. While many prospective home buyers think state and federal financing options are more affordable, there are a few private programs worth exploring.

Oklahoma low-income home buyers should first visit with their local financial institutions (banks and credit unions) to learn more about the home mortgage products and assistance programs they might qualify for. Some banks and credit unions offer lower rates and other benefits when members combine services, so researching local private financing options can help save a significant sum of money during the home buying process.

Once local options have been explored, low-income home buyers in Oklahoma should consider two Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage programs. While these private lenders typically follow traditional requirements for mortgages, they offer two products (Frannie Mae’s HomeReady program and Freddie Mac’s HomeOne Mortgage program) which can help low-income buyers better afford to buy a home.

HomeReady and HomeOne Mortgage highlights include:

  • Low down payment required (3% down payment)
  • No geographic limit on property location
  • Ability to cancel private mortgage insurance when 20% home equity is met

HomeReady and HomeOne Mortgage requirements include:

  • Buyer must have a credit score of 620 or higher
  • Buyer must complete a homeowner education course (for the HomeOne Mortgage product only)

Oklahoma residents can find out more about private mortgage programs here.

Learn More: 7 Easiest Mortgage Lenders for First-Time Home Buyers

Home Buyer Rebates in Oklahoma

Another significant way home buyers in Oklahoma can save money when purchasing a home is by working with a talented, local real estate agent. Agents can help buyers find properties within their budget, walk them through their best financing options, and offer financial advice along the way.

Local real estate agents also know the best time to buy in Oklahoma to help maximize your savings and will work on your behalf to negotiate the fairest price on your new home. Some agents even offer home buyer rebates, designed to save you even more money at the time of closing.

If you don’t already have a local agent, Clever can match you with a top-rated, full-service agent near you. Clever Partner Agents help you get on-demand showings, designed to help you view properties quickly, so you can increase your chances of buying the home you love. In addition, Clever Partner Agents offer $1k home buyer rebates for buyers who purchase homes over $150,000.

Get connected to a Clever Partner Agent today to find out more and receive a no-obligation consultation.

Learn More: How to Get a Home Buyer Rebate

 

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Jamie Ayers

Jamie is the Director of Content at Clever Real Estate, the free online service that connects you with top real estate agents and helps you save thousands on commission. In the past, Jamie has managed columns for clients in a variety of leading business publications, including Forbes, Inc., CEO World, Entrepreneur, and more. At Clever, Jamie's primary goal is to provide home sellers, buyers, and investors with the information they need to successfully navigate the ins and outs of the real estate industry.

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