In recent years, female buyers are on the rise. First time home buyers are far more likely to be female. Women buyers have saturated the real estate market, and are leading the way in terms of purchasing a first home. Although outdated ideas once held women back from receiving loans from a financial institution, this is no longer the case. In fact, banks have become much more open to lending to single buyers. Shifting demographics, lifestyles, and income levels have made it much easier for single female buyers, and many have jumped on this chance.
Tips for Single Female Buyers:
Buying a home as a young single professional has many advantages. Firstly, a home is a great financial investment. Carrying a small, manageable mortgage can often mean monthly mortgage payments that are equal to or lesser than paying rent. Additionally, you can always bring in extra income by renting out a one bedroom condo once you outgrow it. Plus, because women are more likely to have jobs that do not provide a pension, a home is a good investment in your future.
However, buying a home, especially a first home, is a huge decision. It is very important to be well informed, consult with professionals, and buy your home armed with all the tools you need. This is where a great real estate agent is invaluable! Below are some of my basic tips for single female buyers.
1. Set up an emergency fund
○Because you will be carrying all of the costs associated with owning a home on your own, it is important to have an emergency fund. Unexpected repairs can come out of nowhere, and it’s a good idea to have money already set aside for just those kinds of occasions. It is absolutely possible to own a home on a single income, but it is even easier if you are prepared and make smart decisions with your money!
2. Shop around for financing
○For any first time home buyer, it is important to check with several different mortgage lenders before making a selection. However, it is even more important to be wary as a single woman, as it is far more common to receive a subprime mortgage. It is possible that this imbalance is caused by stereotypes about women’s ignorance of financial matters. Whether or not this is the case, the fact that women do tend to pay more for home mortgages than other home buyers remains. Because of this, it is critical to shop aggressively, compare rates, and consult with trusted professionals. As your real estate agent, I will put you in contact with a reputable lender to ensure you get the best possible terms on your mortgage.
3. Obtain seller concessions
○One of the most misunderstood aspects of home ownership is just how much money is needed to maintain the home. Paying about 1 to 3 percent of your home’s total value every year is to be expected. To help offset these costs, it is possible to get seller concessions. It is also fairly common for buyers to ask for (and receive) a one year mortgage to cover repairs on appliances and major systems. As your agent, I can negotiate on your behalf to obtain these cost-cutting concessions.
4. Know what you can afford
○As you can tell, mortgage payments are not the only cost associated with owning a home. Property taxes, maintenance, and other fees should always be part of your calculations. Although your monthly payments on a $149,000 house could come out to around $750, you should expect to pay quite a bit more than this to keep up with other costs. On top of this concern, some banks are often willing to loan you more money than you really need. You shouldn’t think of this as your “price point”- a good investment will likely mean shopping below your maximum loan amount.
Buying real estate is a fantastic investment, and you shouldn’t feel intimidated by the idea of going it alone. With a good realtor by your side, you can be absolutely confident that every aspect of your purchase is being handled by a professional. What’s more, you will go into one of the biggest purchases of your life armed with the knowledge and assistance you need! If you’re thinking of purchasing a home, I’d love to chat with you. Even if you are unsure that you want to buy yet, I would be happy to answer any questions you might have!