Single women more likely to own homes than single men despite gender pay gap: Lending Tree analysis

ByKay Cesinger WLS logo
Sunday, March 19, 2023
Our Chicago Part 1: Single women more likely to own homes than men
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Single women are more likely to be home owners than single men despite the gender pay gap, a Lending Tree analysis found.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- In 48 of 50 states, single women are more likely than single men to own their home. That's according to a Lending Tree analysis of U.S. Census Data.

And, they are more likely to own a home, even though women typically earn roughly 83 cents for every dollar a man makes. So, why and how is this happening?

"We are seeing that women are actually nearly one-fifth of the homebuying market today, they are a significant share," said National Association of Realtors Deputy Chief Economist and Vice President of Research Dr. Jessica Lautz. "We are seeing that they want a place that they can call their own, a place where they know exactly what that mortgage is going to be for the next 30 years, and a place where perhaps it's not just them. They could be caregivers for young children, for elderly parents, a place where they can have stability."

With women often making less money than men, Lautz said, women are cutting expenses "anywhere they can" to be able to afford a home.

"Whether that's cutting expenses on entertainment, clothes. Taking a second job, they're doing all of these factors more than their single men counterparts because they want homeownership. This is something that is incredibly important to them and they're willing to make those financial sacrifices to get there," Lautz said.

So, what about investing for the future and for retirement?

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The Transamerica For Retirement Studies found that only 18% of working women are "very confident" that they will be able to retire with a comfortable lifestyle. A survey done by Fidelity in 2021 found that only 33% of women felt confident in their ability to make investment decisions, and 42% percent felt confident that they could save for the long term and into retirement.

Karen DeRose, president and managing partner with DeRose Financial Planning Group in Chicago, said she's starting to see a shift in confidence.

"I am finding more and more women getting involved in their financial house, because, they want peace of mind, right? All that financial planning does is make sure that you're confident in making financial decisions," DeRose said.

And, for those women who say they don't have any money to invest, DeRose said you have to start small.

"It will compound over time, and it will give you confidence to make better informed decisions too," DeRose said.

A 2021 study by Fidelity found that 67% of women are investing outside of their retirement accounts. That number was just 44% in 2018.

As for the first thing women should do if they want to invest, "I would recommend that they hire a financial adviser, because, think about it. If you were building a house, and this is your financial house, wouldn't you hire an architect, a contractor to make sure all areas of your financial house are going to fit together? That's what a good financial planner does," DeRose said.

Karen DeRose is a registered representative of Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp.