Moving from Wichita? Here are some answers to questions you may have asked:
My research says the cost of living is higher in the OKC metro than it is in Wichita. What gives?
Cost of living data is below (ACCRA data from 1Q 2012). As you can see, both OKC and Wichita are well below the national average. The published cost of living index overall is currently slightly higher in Wichita. However, in some of the individual categories that make up the overall index, OKC is actually a little more expensive than Wichita. Where you fall depends on how you spend your money. It is also important to keep in mind Oklahoma City's lower overall tax burden. The data shows you won't see much of a difference in your daily costs or buying power, and you might actually have more money left over, especially when you take taxes into account. For detailed cost-of-living info, you can check out our Cost of Living Calculator. Not sure how to interpret the data? Here's some info from the source themselves. Check out some COL, income and tax-related data below.
Source: Tax Foundation
What about car insurance rates?
According to homeinsurance.com, auto insurance rates are similar in Kansas and Oklahoma ($1212.31 and $1378.11 average annual premium, respectively).
What about housing per square foot?
Oklahoma City has one of the lowest housing costs for a Top 50 metro in the nation. Again, according to Zillow, price per square foot rates are similar in Wichita and Oklahoma City ($83 and $88, respectively, as of Oct. 9, 2012). These are determined by what is on the market currently and can vary from day to day, but obviously the rates are quite similar.
What about property taxes?
OK, we'll show this one again just because it's fun. Oklahoma City is well-known for its low tax burden on individuals and businesses alike.
What about earthquake insurance?
This is generally not included in standard policies. Oklahoma is certainly not known for earthquakes, though recently this idea has been "shaken up" a little (get it?). Most people in Oklahoma don't carry earthquake insurance. According to www.ok.gov/oid/earthquake_tips.html (which is also a good info resource on this subject), "Earthquake insurance is not a popular product in Oklahoma. Dan Ramsey, president and CEO of the Independent Insurance Agents of Oklahoma, estimates that less than 1 percent of Oklahoma homeowners carry earthquake insurance." Moreover, it would be nearly impossible to guess what you might pay for coverage due to all the factors involved (the webpage listed above has a good rundown on how this typically works), but this page puts estimates for earthquake endorsements at between $100-$150 per year. Whether or not you need it and how much coverage you would want is up to you.
What about sewer backup insurance?
Again, this is generally not included in standard policies. Again, this is up to you. If you live in an older area of the City or downhill from a main you might consider it, according to this page on the City's website. Again, rates for the sewer backup endorsement vary according to a variety of factors. Most estimates culled from a Google search look to be between about $25 to $50 per year.
What about water / sewer / electric / natural gas / other utility rates?
Check our Housing Q&A section for more detailed info on this.
How do I transfer my driver license from Kansas?
Information can be found at:http://www.dps.state.ok.us/dls/apply/dl_transfer.html. Probably the most important points are:
"A Driver License from another state, that is not expired, can be transferred to Oklahoma without having to take a written or drive test.
If the Out of State license has expired the applicant will have to take a written and drive test.
Applicant must appear before a Driver License Examiner and furnish both primary and secondary documentary proofs of identity, proof of full legal name and birth date, and proof of legal presence in the United States."
Check the website above for more info.
What are the requirements to obtain a driver’s license?
Information can be found at: http://www.dps.state.ok.us/dls/.
How do I renew my auto tags?
Information can be found at: http://www.tax.ok.gov/faq/faqmv32.html.
What about pet licenses?
Depends on the laws of your particular municipality. In Oklahoma City, a pet license is not required per se, but a dog must wear a rabies tag at all times. In Norman and Moore, for example, a pet license is required. The best bet is to check the website for the pertinent municipality or do a Google search.
What do I need to do to enroll my kids in school? Where can I find info on schools?
Depends on which school district you're in. For Oklahoma City Public Schools:
"The required enrollment information is current address, phone number and proof of residency. All incoming seventh-graders must have a whooping cough or pertussis vaccine booster before school. Proof is required for enrollment. State law permits medical and personal belief exemptions. A new personal belief exemption must be signed for the pertussis booster requirement. For more information, call 405-587-0000 or go to www.okcps.org"
Check your particular school district's website for particular requirements.See the Schools section of this website for more info on area schools.
How does my kid establish residency for high school athletic purposes?
Your kid's parents or guardian have to be actually living in Oklahoma. TheOklahoma Secondary School Activities Association (OSSAA) governs such matters. Check with them for particular questions.
Is a P.O. Box the same as a residence in Oklahoma?
Not unless you're really small! No, but seriously, no it isn't. You actually have to be living at a residence in Oklahoma to establish residency. Makes sense, eh?