According to recent statistics, it is expected that more single women will purchase homes than in any time in history. As explained by Realtor.org 16% of all repeat homebuyers are women, while only 8% are men. When it comes to first time homebuyers the numbers look similar: 23% are single women, while only 15% of all first time homebuyers are men. They continue explaining that “about one-quarter of the nation’s nearly eight million single mothers spend more than half of their incomes on housing, compared [to] one-tenth of households headed by single fathers.”
One can ask themself where the increase of women homebuyers originates? Here are some possible reasons that explain the current trend.
1. More single women
It is very simple, we are moving further away from the traditional way women were perceived by society. Women used to graduate from high school, find a husband, get married and take care of their families. There were less single women that could afford to purchase a home. Nowadays, many women have different priorities. Before they get married, they want to study, start their own career and explore their opportunities. At the same time, they don’t want too rent their places for to long, but rather they prefer owning them. This was found by a study conducted by the Joint Center Of Housing Studies at Harvard University. These results show that women have “a strong desire to own [their] own home”, and explain the increase in women buying homes over the past twenty years.
2. Difference in income
Over the past 30 years the amount of women graduating from college increased by approximately 13%. Thirty years ago about 41% of college graduates were females. Today the numbers are at around 54% (Peter Francese, founder of American Demographics Magazine). This increase in graduating female students has led to an increase in income of women. Peter Francese continues by stating that there was a 10% increase in women’s income over the past decades. In addition to that, he explains that 52% of all white-collar workers are female. This makes it easier for women to invest in houses than in the past. After all, you can only buy a home if you can afford one.
3. Equal Opportunities
Through the introduction of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act in 1974 it is much easier for women to receive loans. Since then, banks can’t deny credits based on sex or marital status. This is why it is easier for single mothers to buy homes, or to invest in real estate. This is reinforced by the equal rights movement. As mentioned earlier, more than half of all white-collar workers are female, which means more women have higher incomes, enabling them to buy homes.
4. Reason for repeat buyers to continue investing
There are several reasons for women to invest into real estate, even if they are already current owners. One of the reasons is relocation for work. Many times, single women are very ambitious, and hard working. This is why they are willing to relocate for a promotion or a pay-raise. Another reason could be that children move out, and single mothers end up living in homes that are too big. As a result they want to buy a place that is smaller, and either sell their old place, or lease it out. In addition, women might also turn into repeat buyers for pure financial reasons. After having purchased their own home, the have the experience they need to maintain an apartment. People are able to simply buy places in order to lease them out and have a second source of income in addition to their primary job.