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Single Female Homebuyers Numbers Increase in Today's Real Estate Market

Single Female Homebuyers Numbers Increase in Today's Real Estate Market

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By Elaine VonCannon, ABR, SRES, Associate Broker, Notary, Team Leader, Property Manager, Award Winning Agent

Recent statistics show single women homebuyers outpace male homebuyers. They are currently capturing nearly 20% of the home buying market compared to approximately 10% for single men (National Association of Realtors). Single women make up 20% of this real estate market- a remarkable increase compared to the mid 1980s, when they were only 10% of the buying market.

Why have so many women decided to enter the home market? There has always been a home market for widowed and divorced women. This type of female homeowner has increased by the numbers of professional women who are making strides in careers and are perfectly capable of purchasing a home. Some may want to make an investment that eventually pays off as a resale or rental unit, while others want a comfortable, secure place to live that suits their lifestyle choice.

Yet when women purchase homes, the process they go through is much different from men. Many men are focused on the amount of space a home has, or the extra features. Men are inclined to want something immediately, and begin the process of paying for it. Women tend to conduct more research and deliberate on different choices. For women, making an emotional connection to the real estate agent and the home are important considerations in the whole process. Women and men definitely have differing approaches to home purchases.

Who is the Female Homebuyer?

What are the characteristics of a female homebuyer shopping for a home? There are actually many different groups of female homebuyers. These include: divorced, widowed, single mother, never married and more. For many professional women, an investment in a home purchase is simply a matter of getting tired of renting and wanting to modify their own space and/or to make a solid investment for the future.

There are also more female real estate investors in the current market then in the mid 1980s. They want to purchase homes that need renovations because the investment will pay off after the rehab is complete in a resale (also known as flipping). Or, the property will be renovated, then placed on the open rental market to produce a monthly income.

Single mothers are looking for properties with enough indoor/outdoor space so their children can play - as well as safe playgrounds nearby. Single mothers want secure neighborhoods with other families as neighbors, so their children can socialize and play with their age groups.

Divorced and widowed women and women who have never married without children may be searching for the complete opposite in a home and a neighborhood. Their ideal dwelling may be a quiet, secure place in a neighborhood without many children.

There are, of course, other types of women homebuyers - some who defy categories. All have the same interests at heart: owning a sanctuary for themselves and their loved ones and having a piece of the American dream.

What Do Women Want in a Home?

When it comes to being very specific about a property, the desires of the women homebuyer are paramount. Often women will not settle for anything less than what they want. Some of these particular aspects of homes include: large closet spaces, jetted bathtubs, a secure neighborhood, a separate laundry room, a spacious kitchen and more. Homes that are move in ready, requiring very little renovation, are often preferable to women homebuyers.

What Types of Properties Do Women Tend to Purchase?

Female homebuyers with careers often purchase townhouses and condominiums, because they have limited time outside of work and these types of property investments require low maintenance. Some women will opt for a single-family home in a secure place with a manageable amount of space.

Many single females on the market today are first time homebuyers. So, real estate agents will need to step them through the initial process of home financing and home purchase.

One thing is for certain. As women continue to make achievements in the professional world, the number of homebuyers will increase in numbers, too. And, women's preferences in housing will begin to shape the features of the actual properties that are sold. For now, one in five purchases are made by single women. This should be plenty of impetus for builders and renovation specialists to cater to women's taste.