Women still face hurdles when it comes to equal pay and job opportunities. Even so, sales to single women home buyers outpace sales to single men. Here’s our guide to the implications of this growing trend.
More single female home buyers than male
Today, single women make up almost a fifth of home purchasers. Male buyers come in at less than 10 percent.
This trend fits with the growing representation of women in higher education, where they make up the majority of college students and earn more postgraduate degrees than men. Single women are increasingly buying homes despite the fact that they earn around 20 percent less than their male counterparts and carry two-thirds of the nation’s student loan debt.
Why are single female home buyers outpacing men?
Given these differences, how is it that single women are buying more homes than single men?
Their lower incomes and the prospect of lower retirement savings may make young women more focused on financial security than young men. Studies show that women tend to be more risk-averse and make more conservative financial decisions. Single women may also be caring for children or aging parents, making security over the long haul a primary goal. And like all home buyers, single women enjoy tax benefits from homeownership. All of these factors contribute to single women wanting to buy a house as soon as possible.
Single women buyers also may have an easier time buying a home because, thanks to their history of regularly paying bills and loans on time, their average credit score is well over 700.
Marketing your home with single women in mind
Since a significant portion of the buyers who take a look at your home may be single women, make your home appealing to them.
To attract single women home buyers, emphasize updates and upgrades. No one likes the idea of an aging HVAC system breaking down, particularly someone who’s buying for financial security. It’s also a good idea to describe smart home and security systems.
Watch your terminology in marketing. Convert terms like “his and hers closets” into “dual closets,” so that you highlight attractive features without making it sound like your house is only appropriate for couples.
If there is space that could become an extra bedroom for a renter or an aging parent, be sure to describe these.
Buying a home as a single woman
If you are a single woman aspiring to homeownership, take these steps toward your dream.
- Before applying for a mortgage, pull a free copy of your credit report to learn your credit score. Contact the credit agencies to correct any errors.
- Strive to save a 20 percent down payment. This strengthens your mortgage application. With this much put down, you won’t be required to buy mortgage insurance. This means your monthly payment will be lower.
- Use a mortgage broker to shop for the best interest rate and terms. Then get preapproved for a mortgage to show that you’re a serious buyer. This is a more substantial step than becoming prequalified, which is a more cursory look at your creditworthiness.
- Consider taking in a roommate to help with mortgage costs. If this interests you, look for a home with space suitable for a tenant.