Single American Homeowners Becoming More Prominent in 2024

While pursuing homeownership without a partner isn’t the norm for all Americans, single homeowners are becoming more prominent in the home purchase market.

A new PennyMac survey revealed the driving trends and potential roadblocks to purchasing a home by one’s self. The majority of single females in the U.S. believe that waiting for a partner to buy a home is an outdated idea.

The survey highlights the role societal pressures played in homebuyers’ decision to purchase and the biggest challenges they faced.

Single Homeownership Survey Results Highlights:

  • Over half of respondents believe the idea of waiting for a significant other to buy a home is outdated.
  • Some 55% of female homebuyers said their biggest challenge was finding a home in their price range, while 51% of male homebuyers said it was saving for the down payment.
  • Roughly 67% of single homebuyers did not have financial assistance from family or friends with a down payment for their home.
  • An estimated 70% of respondents did not feel societal pressure to buy a home.
  • Approximately 65% of single homebuyers purchased their first home in the range of $0-$250k.

While some homebuyers have the luxury of using monetary gifts from family for down payments, some 67% surveyed single homebuyers saved for it on their own and didn’t have any financial assistance from family and/or friends.

The most popular down payment range reported by both male and female respondents was 6%–10%, with most individuals (65%) purchasing a home in the $0-$250,000 range.

Societal pressure isn’t a factor in most homebuying decisions.

There are many reasons why people choose to buy a home, from the opportunity to build their own equity to reaping potential tax benefits. According to our survey, it’s not cultural norms, as 70% of respondents did not feel societal pressure to buy a home.

Like many others, half of single homebuyers were prepared to acquire their own home. They made the decision to start building their own equity because 43% of respondents said they had leased on their own before buying a house. Furthermore, they might have thought the time was appropriate to act because 36% of them were able to secure a mortgage interest rate in the range of 3.1% to 4%.

No partner? No Problem!

Homeowners didn’t feel the need to have a partner to take the exciting step to buy. The idea of waiting for a significant other to buy a home was deemed outdated by over half of respondents, with slightly more females (54%) than males (48%) agreeing it’s an “old-fashioned notion”.

Nearly half of single homebuyers purchased their first home between the ages of 25 and 34, and 58% anticipate living in their home for nine or more years.

With different genders, come different challenges.

While buying a home is a milestone, it doesn’t come without hurdles. Some 55% of women reported their biggest challenge when buying a home solo was finding a home in their price range, while 51% of males cited saving for the down payment as their number one obstacle.

Single homeowners have become an important piece of the housing market pie. They’re saving for down payments, securing financing, and bucking societal trends by not waiting for a partner to buy a home. They’re gaining the freedom, sense of security, and peace of mind that comes from the exciting homeownership experience.

Homeownership is for everyone, not just married folks or couples. No matter your partnership status, the American Dream is achievable by yourself, too.

To read the full report, including more data, charts, and methodology, click here.

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Demetria C. Lester

Demetria C. Lester is a reporter for MortgagePoint (formerly DS News and MReport) with more than eight years of writing and editing experience. She has served as content coordinator and copy editor for the Los Angeles Daily News and the Orange County Register, in addition to 11 other Southern California publications. A former editor-in-chief at Northlake College and staff writer at her alma mater, the University of Texas at Arlington, she has covered events such as the Byron Nelson and Pac-12 Conferences, progressing into her freelance work with the Dallas Wings and D Magazine. Currently located in Dallas, Texas, Lester is a jazz aficionado, Harry Potter fanatic, and likes to read. She can be reached at demetria.lester@thefivestar.com.
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