- Women face many obstacles when purchasing a home due to the gender wage gap, higher household responsibilities, higher debt levels, and more.
- Women earn 82 cents for every dollar men make on average.
- Women are more likely to take time off work and have shorter work hours than men, leading to less income for a home.
- Women tend to carry more credit card debt and have higher student loan debt than men.
- Building credit scores, saving for a down payment, and looking for affordable properties can help women achieve their homeownership goals.
When it comes to purchasing a home, women face many obstacles. Despite the strides that we have made toward gender equality, there is still a gender wage gap that impacts women’s ability to purchase and maintain a home. There are many reasons why women struggle to buy a home. Here’s an in-depth look at those reasons and what you can do to buy a home today.
Home Ownership in The U.S.
About 65% of the U.S. population is estimated to own a home. Only about half of women own a home, compared to two-thirds of men. This gender gap in homeownership has existed for many years and is still present today. Here are the reasons behind that:
One of the main reasons why women struggle to purchase a home is the gender wage gap. Women earn less than men on average, and this wage gap affects their ability to save and invest in property. According to a report by the National Women’s Law Center, women working full-time earn just 82 cents for every dollar men earn. This wage gap can increase over time, making it difficult for women to achieve their financial goals.
Higher Household Responsibilities
Women often take on more household responsibilities than men, making saving for a down payment on a home challenging. Women are more likely to take time off work to care for children or elderly family members, which impacts their earning potential. Additionally, women are more likely to work part-time or have shorter work hours, meaning they have less income for a home.
Higher Debt Levels
Women tend to have higher levels of debt than men, making purchasing a home challenging. According to a report by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, women are more likely to carry credit card debt and have higher levels of student loan debt than men. This debt can impact their credit score, making it harder to qualify for a mortgage or secure a low-interest rate.
Lack of Access to Affordable Housing
In many areas of the country, affordable housing is challenging. Women, in particular, may struggle to find affordable and safe housing. Women are more likely to experience domestic violence, which can lead to the need to relocate quickly. Finding affordable, safe housing in a new area can be challenging, making it difficult for women to purchase a home.
Limited Access to Financing
Finally, women may struggle to secure financing for a home purchase. Lenders may be more hesitant to lend to women, particularly single women or women with bad credit. Discrimination is still a problem in the lending world, and women may face higher interest rates or stricter lending requirements than men.
Tips for Buying a Home as a Woman
The struggles of buying a home as a woman may seem daunting, but there are things you can do to make the process easier.
Look For Affordable Properties
The first thing you need to consider is the right property. There are many affordable houses and land in the country right now. You can check them out online at your convenience. You can consider contacting your local real estate agent to view them. Different agents may have different deals that you can take advantage of.
Build Up Your Credit Score
The next thing you need to do is improve your credit score. Maintaining a good credit score is essential when it comes time to apply for a loan. Pay all your bills on time and pay down any existing debt. You should also consider getting a secured credit card or a short-term loan to help build your credit score.
Save for a Down Payment
Lastly, you need to save up for a down payment. You should try to save as much as possible for the down payment. A higher down payment will reduce the interest you pay on the loan and shorten your loan terms, saving you money in the long run.
Buying a home is crucial, but it can be challenging for women due to gender wage gaps and other obstacles. However, buying a home can be achievable and rewarding with some preparation and research. Women can make their homeownership dreams come true by understanding these issues and knowing where to look for resources.