Why buying their own home is so much harder for women

Women are less likely to own their own home than men and are more likely to live within close proximity of their hometowns, parents and place of work.

New research has highlighted the huge gap in gender house price affordability as a result of the imbalance in pay between the average man and woman, meaning women are facing a far longer and harder task when it comes to saving for, and paying off a property purchase.

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The research found that with an annual gross income of £38,061, the average British male requires 7.3 times their annual salary in order to cover the current average property price of £278,120.

In contrast, the average British female requires 11.1 times her average annual income of £25,154 to cover the same property cost, almost four years more than her male homebuying counterpart.

London is predictably home to the largest gender house price affordability gap. The average London male would require 10.3 times their current annual gross earnings to cover the cost of a London property (£521,146), while for a female homebuyer this climbs to 15.6 - a gap of 5.3 years.

The South East, South West and East of England are also home to a gender house price affordability gap of five times annual salary or more.

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But even in the North East where this gap is at its smallest, the average female still requires almost two years' additional earnings to cover the cost of a property versus the earnings required from a male homebuyer.

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In Inverclyde the average female earns £24,619 versus an annual gross income of £27,542 for the average male. This means that the average female needs five years annual income to cover the average cost of a property, while the average male needs 4.5 years - a gap of just half a year.

Across both Rushmoor and Blackpool, the gender house price affordability gap also sits below a year's earnings between both the average male and female homebuyer.

And in Copeland, Anglesey, Tunbridge Wells and Falkirk, the average female requires just one additional year of income to cover the cost of a property when compared to the average male.

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Previous data has also highlighted how this gender imbalance translates to homeownership, with 60 per cent of those who outright own their homes being male, with men also accounting for 67 per cent of homeowners with a mortgage.

This disparity is also clear in the rental sector where just 40 per cent of private renters were women.

However, when it comes to social renters, women account for 58 per cent versus 42 per cent being male.

But it’s not just how we get by in the property market that can be influenced by gender but also where we choose to do it.

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Boomin, the property platform for which the research was done, found that 42 per cent of women live within one to four miles of their parents versus just 29 per cent of males.

And 38 per cent of women also live within one to four miles of their hometown versus 31 per cent of males.

Finally, 60 per cent of women live within one to four miles of their workplace versus 48 per cent of men.

Athena Hubble, MD of Boomin, said: “Fortunately I’ve been able to purchase properties but there are so many females out there who struggle to get on the property ladder.

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"The gender pay gap is a significant mismatch that women are reminded of every time they receive their monthly payslip, and it stretches beyond the workplace into other areas of life.

"Our purchasing power within the property market is certainly one of those areas, and the disparity in pay between men and women has a huge influence on what we are able to borrow.

"As a result, many women are priced out of homeownership unless they accept that the only path in achieving it is with a significant other.”