Women cite down payment and monthly mortgage payment costs as the biggest obstacles to homeownership.

Most Single Women Heads of Household Think Homeownership Not Possible

In a new research brief, Freddie Mac found that 60% of single female heads of households who rent believe they will never be able to afford homeownership.

80% of these female heads of households indicated they don’t have enough savings for a down payment or closing costs.  1,500 of the 2,000 respondents to Freddie’s survey think that having a monthly mortgage payment would be more expensive than a monthly rent payment and/or that they don’t earn enough income to pay a mortgage.

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“Women’s” Job Sectors Hardest Hit by Pandemic

According to Pam Perry, single-family vice president of equitable housing, “The COVID-19 pandemic has had disparate economic impacts nationwide, particularly on women who are heads of their households, such as single moms and caretakers.”

The hospitality and leisure services industry and retail sales industry, industries that are overrepresented by women, have taken especially hard hits.  Likewise, the health services and education sectors.

The Issue of Childcare

On top of job and/or income loss, single female heads of households are also most likely to have the responsibility of childcare.  Childcare, or the lack of or exorbitantly expensive childcare, may help explain why 75% of the approximately 2.5M women who left the workforce during the pandemic have not yet returned.

Homeownership Also Iffy for Sole-Person Households

The number of sole-person households has been on the rise for some years.  According to the 2020 Current Population Survey, there were 36M sole-person households in the US, or, 28% of all households. This number is increasing as divorces and/or deaths of spouses/partners increase.

Sole-person households are adding demand for smaller, more affordable homes…homes that account for only 10% of the new homes builders are building…existing homes that are almost immediately snapped up by investors who then place those homes in single-family rental pools.

Remember too that sole-person households often cite the same affordability concerns about homeownership that single female heads of households cite…not enough income/savings to pay for a down payment and/or a monthly mortgage payment.

Thanks to Freddie Mac and HousingWire.

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