A report last month by the National Association of Realtors noted that 21 percent of home buyers nationwide are single women; among first-time buyers, that number rises to 25 percent. By contrast, single men represent 10 percent of buyers; among first-timers, 12 percent are single men.According to a 2008 nationwide census survey, there are 163 single female homeowners for every 100 single male homeowners. Sixty-three percent of women buyers chose single-family homes, 13 percent chose town houses and 19 percent bought condominiums.Women started buying homes on their own in large numbers in the 1980s, according to Walter Molony, a spokesman for the National Association of Realtors. Before that, he said, women “were not taken seriously by lenders” and often “couldn’t get a credit card, let alone a mortgage.”Benefiting from a push for fair and equal credit, single women accounted for 11 percent of buyers by 1981. Sixteen years later, in 1997, the proportion had risen to 18 percent. In 2007 and 2008, one in every five home purchases was made by a woman.
By Marcelle S. Fischler, Dec 13, 2009 NYT

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