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New Study Shows Homeownership Favors Men, But Not in Pa., N.J.

On May 27, 2016

Woman Holding House Keys“Homeownership is more profitable for men than for women, a study released Thursday by the real estate search engine RealtyTrac maintains.

Analyzing 2.1 million single-family homes nationwide, RealtyTrac found that homes owned by single men on average are worth 10 percent more and have appreciated $10,112 (16 percent) more since purchase than those owned by single women.

Single male homeowners accounted for 1.14 million of the total, and single women for 1.01 million, based on public record tax assessor data collected by RealtyTrac.

Pennsylvania and New Jersey do not quite follow the national trend, RealtyTrac data show.

Although single men in Pennsylvania own houses worth $8,160 (5 percent) more than single women – $149,486 versus $141,326 – the average gain since purchase is $689, or 2 percent, in favor of women, RealtyTrac showed.

The actual return on purchase is 31.95 percent for women and 28.9 percent for men, data show.

Bob Acuff, president of Re/Max Services in Blue Bell, said he would have assumed that the national numbers would have no bearing on the realities of the Pennsylvania market.

Acuff said he asked three female agents in his office whether the numbers made sense.

“Two said, ‘not at all,’ and one said, ‘to a small degree,’ ” he said.

In New Jersey, the gap at purchase is 5 percent in the men’s favor – $257,805 versus $246,188.

The average gain in value since purchase, however, favors the women – $8,546 or 29 percent more, the RealtyTrac data show.

“Single women I sell to gravitate to smaller, less expensive houses that offer an easier lifestyle,” said Val Nunnenkamp, an agent with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Fox & Roach Realtors in Marlton.

“I’d say 89 percent of them do, and what they do with the houses and how that is presented to the next buyer at sale time makes the difference,” he said.

A recent example was the house of single woman pitted against two others – one owned by a husband and wife, the other by a single man.

The single woman’s home went for $475,000, the two others for $415,000 to $420,000, Nunnenkamp said.

Some area agents said RealtyTrac’s findings were not all that easy to substantiate.

“A home is neutral in regards to whether it is owned by a man or a woman,” said Chris Somers, the owner of Re/Max Access in Northern Liberties.

“Value is simply going to be the value,” he said.

Benjamin Oller, a managing partner of The Condo Shop, speculated that “single men seeking discounts will more often than single women purchase in less desirable areas that, in recent years, have experienced higher appreciation.”

“I think they are cheaper than women, not smarter, but obviously it has some statistical benefits,” Oller said.”

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