“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,” said Lawrence Yun, the NAR chief economist. “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.”
Single mothers also outnumber single fathers, and they might be more likely to seek out stability through real estate, Jessica Lautz, NAR’s managing director of survey research and communications, told Bloomberg. “If you have children, it’s definitely going to play a role in where you’re thinking of living and how,” Lautz said.
That said, most single women aren’t purchasing million-dollar homes. Most are buying at an older age than their male counterparts, and the properties they’re purchasing usually cost a little less. Single female buyers are also slightly more likely to have homes that fall into foreclosure.
“There’s a domino effect,” Daren Blomquist, SVP of ATTOM Data Solutions, told Bloomberg. “Because of the wage gap, you see women having to purchase lower-value homes, and they’re more open to risk when they do. Typically what causes a foreclosure is some kind of shock, like a job loss. If you have a lower-value home that’s appreciating less quickly, you have less of a cushion than someone who has seen their value appreciate more.”
But although these buyers are single, that doesn’t mean they don’t want the space for a partner if the right person comes along. “They are all looking for an apartment that would be able to accommodate a partner, not necessarily an extra bedroom but extra closet space for another person and an extra half bathroom is a big plus,” Alexander Boriskin, a New York-based broker at Douglas Ellian Real Estate, told the Guardian.