If you read yesterday’s blog – or glimpsed the National Association of Realtors’ recent report on home buyer and seller trends – you already know that single women were last year’s second-largest demographic of first-time homebuyers, right behind married couples. To some, this might sound surprising, but the pattern is nothing new. Since the 1990’s, single women have consistently comprised about one-fifth of the housing marketplace. The percentage of ladies independently buying homes dipped in the midst of economic recession, but there’s reason to believe that this demographic is making a strong comeback for 2016 and far beyond.
Why? Economic recovery is the most obvious component, but far from the only one. Today’s young ladies are increasingly more concerned with achieving professional goals than they are with romance, and the cultural shift is starting to pay off. According to Fortune, San Diego is among the areas showing a marked rise in women earning $100,000 or more. As more women have the financial means for homeownership, more choose to become homeowners – even without men at their sides.
Marriage trends inform on the pattern as well. In America, marriage rates are steadily declining. Today, less Americans choose to get married than ever before (and less married couples are divorcing, too). Obviously, more single people equates to more single homebuyers. Plus, the average age of marriage has drifted from the early 20’s to the late 20’s, meaning that many couples who do tie the knot do in a different stage of life than their parents did. Modern young women don’t necessarily see marriage as a pre-cursor to homeownership. If the financial means are there, why not buy a house?
There are many additional factors, including the properties that single women tend to target, among others. One thing is clear: single ladies will be a driving force in the real estate market for years to come.