Should you wait until you’ve got a wedding ring on your finger to sign those closing documents? Absolutely not, say real estate and financial experts.

By Brittany Anas | February 9, 2019

Lots of singles are buying homes. According to a recent analysis from LendingTree, on average, single women own around 22 percent of homes in the U.S.—outpacing men, who own less than 13 percent of homes. This is particularly interesting since the average woman in the U.S. only makes 80 percent of what the average man is paid.

The experts’ Valentine’s gift to singles this year: Advice on how to buy a home by your own damn self.

The benefit: you don’t have to compromise with anyone else

We’ve all seen the house-hunting reality shows where couples are majorly split over what they’re looking for. It’s… uncomfortable.

When you’re buying a home by yourself, though, there’s only one opinion that matters, points out Kate Ziegler, an investor and Realtor with Arborview Realty in Boston: yours!

“Solo buyers will have no bickering over the basics of a kitchen, no debating whether a mudroom is a must-have, no disagreements over what to do with the wallpaper,” she says. “Single buyers might be surprised how much energy can be lost to these discussions in a coupled house hunt, and they can skip to the front of that line and get right to the offer.”

Crunch the numbers—and trust them

Run a variety of scenarios and talk things over with a lender you trust, and be sure your potential monthly payment is manageable, Ziegler suggests. To get more comfortable with the “what if” factor, research market rents in your target area to determine what you could expect to get for rent if, hypothetically, you met your soulmate next month—but they lived in a different state and you wanted to move, she says.

Try ‘house hacking’

Remember that your first purchase doesn’t have to be your forever home, says Ziegler.

“A smaller home for one or a larger unit subsidized by roommates can be a great investment now, no matter what your love life serves up next,” she says. By house hacking, you can rent out rooms or units in your home to help cover a large chunk of your mortgage.

Continue to Apartment Therapy for the full article.