The Real Estate Gender Gap

It hard to believe but despite more than 50 years passing since banks started allowing women to apply for home loans without the signature of a husband, the “Gender Property Divide” has remained skewered.

CoreLogic figures showed single females owned 24 per cent of property in Australia, while single men owned 27.7 per cent. Much of the remaining share of property was owned by couples. Women often prioritising homeownership from an earlier age, and quite often purchase cheaper and lower quality homes in order to enter the market.

CoreLogic head of Australian research Eliza Owen said salary disparity was a major factor behind the inequality. “As long as you have a gender pay gap, that could contribute to a gender wealth gap,” Ms Owen said.

The latest data showed Australian women earn 13.8 per cent less than men on average, she said. But this was only one part of the equation, with wider socio-economic trends and cultural factors also playing a part.

“ABS census data suggests that single parent and lone adult households in Australia that are headed by women are about 64 per cent but women have a relatively low representation in home ownership,” she said.

While the federal government’s Family Home Guarantee allows eligible single parents to purchase a home with just a 2 per cent deposit, the scheme is only available to 10,000 households over four financial years. 

Mortgage Advice Bureau managing director Darren Cantor said buying property on a single income was difficult. “If you don’t have that second income, it’s very, very challenging to save for a deposit while renting,” he said.

Finder’s Consumer Sentiment Tracker showed the average Australian man had $28,528 in cash savings, while the average woman had $17,775.

According to Dr Danae Lim, General Manager of Design, Sales and Marketing at Mirvac “Education and parity in wages were both key for better wealth equality. Ultimately, it’s about financial savviness and how much income one has,” she said.

Mr Cantor said most banks didn’t consider loan applications where the size of the mortgage was more than five times the borrower’s income, so even if the applicant had a 20 per cent deposit and was earning $100,000 a year, they were limited to properties worth about $600,000. Unfortunately, the Redlands has an extremely limited supply of housing under $600,000.

Remember, if you need any help or advice, we are just a phone call away.

All the best, Simon.

Sources: Kate McIntyre, realestate.com.au

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