The number of single women buying homes is on the rise. According to data collected by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), single women now make up 17% of all home buyers, while single men represent a mere 7%. And while married couples still make up the majority (66%) of home buyers, the percentage of single women buying homes just hit its highest point since 2011.
For NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, the reason boils down to opportunity.
“Single women for years have indicated a strong desire to own a home of their own, as well as an inclination to live closer to friends and family,” Yun said. “With job growth holding steady and credit conditions becoming somewhat less stringent than in past years, the willingness and opportunity to buy is becoming more feasible for many single women.”
For many, the fact that single women are outpacing single men as homeowners may seem counter-intuitive. After all, NAR points out that the average income for single women ($55,300) is much lower than that of single men ($69,000). Furthermore, due in large part to higher incomes, homes owned by single men are worth 10% more, on average, than homes of single women.
But recent articles released by Bloomberg and Housing Wire provide some insight into why, despite lower incomes and home values, women are still more likely to become homeowners.
- Women are more likely than men to be single parents. According to data collected by the Pew Research Center, there are 8.6 million single-mother households in the United States, compared with only 2.6 million single-father households. Parents are often attracted to homeownership as a way to provide financial security and stability for their family.
- Women are more likely to make financial sacrifices to buy a home. Owning a home often involves making choices and sacrifices that can affect your lifestyle. Jessica Lautz, NAR’s managing director of survey research and communications, argues that women are more likely to take a second job or eliminate discretionary expenses from their budget to save up for their down payment.
- Women are better at paying their mortgages on time. Research conducted by ATTOM Data Solutions (the parent company of RealtyTrac) finds that, despite lower incomes, women are more likely to pay their mortgages on time and tend to have higher credit scores than men.
Ready to buy a home?
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On the House blog posts are meant to provide general information on various housing-related issues, research and programs. We are not liable for any errors or inaccuracies in the information provided by blog sources. Furthermore, this blog is not legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed professional attorney.