As a mom there are many things important to me when it comes to my kids: how I raise them, what they learn, all their influences, and most importantly what kind of people they will be and their futures. And although you cannot predict the future, one thing you can do is come prepared for the future. Whether that is purchasing a home, making sure you have health care, long term care, or life insurance, making sure you are financially secure as a woman is very important from the get go.
Now when people talk about women and finances the automatic defense is that “I’m married, I do not have to worry about that” and “I’ll never be divorced” and while all of that may be true, the reality is that divorce is not the only cause of a woman left to care for herself and children. And aside from the traditional family roles of a spouse and mother many women take, more and more women are finding themselves delaying child baring years and pushing off marriage for full time careers.
No matter where a woman is in her journey, she absolutely needs to be prepared for herself and for her family if the need arises.
Recently I spoke to a Gulf Coast Homes Broker, Keith Furrow, also President North Florida CRS 2012, about purchasing a home as a single woman. I was curious how woman are perceived when shopping alone and obtaining the all important loans.
MomDot.com: Is there anything women can do to protect them for buying a home…lets say 2 people buy a house together but get divorced? If the husband takes the house, is the woman removed from the loan?
“If two people purchase a home together then they both have responsibility in repayment and encumbrances. There would have to be a new loan removing one from the responsibility or a cash payment paying the other party their portion of the equity. A judge can remove one name from the title and liability but, if the loan is not paid back the one holding the note can enforce payment on both/all parties. It is important that any change in ownership be properly recorded and filed at the county. A quit claim deed is often used to transfer ones interest to another. But transferring ones interest doesn’t remove they liability to repay.”
“It is illegal to discriminate on martial status. A single or divorced woman who is credit worthy and meets loan guidelines will have no problems obtaining a loan. Single women are one of the largest and fastest growing segments of the real estate market in USA.”
MomDot.com: How often do you see women purchasing a home by themselves?
“20% of our sales in the last year have been with single women. Single women are one of the largest and fastest growing segments of the real estate market in North America. “
Do your research and homework. Learn the vocabulary. Hire a CRS-Certified Residential Specialist which is a very experienced Realtor. Find one that specializes with working with buyers.Drive around the area that you are interested in at different times of the day and week. Be sure that the home purchased has been well maintained, and can continue to be maintained affordably. I recommend having proper home inspections, i.e. home inspection, mold inspection, defective drywall, any other inspection your Realtor recommends. I also recommend doing research on the registered sexual Predators near the property and area they are considering.
Getting Financial Advice
No matter your age, you need to find the right financial advice and services that fit your goals. Your goals at 20 may be far different than your goals at 50. And while women get better with age regarding money, it is never too early to start the preparation. Genworth for example says:
Start now. One of the smartest things you can do to prepare for a secure financial future is to start early. Start small, it’s okay! Take advantage of any employer 401ks. Even if you only start with a small amount of money, starting earlier with less money can be more profitable than starting later with more money.
And that is so true! When I was in my 20’s I blew all the money I made. I mean ALL of it. It was somewhere around my mid to late 20’s that I realized I had very little savings and couldn’t plan on that forever. So I made a plan and started banking my money rather than buying new things. Over the years I have managed to pay off all debt and put a modest savings together. I also only take vacations if I can pay them cash and try to live without too many crazy extras.
How about you? Do you feel comfortable with where you are with savings and your future? Have you started preparing for your retirement?
Supported by Genworth in association with Brandfluential. Stories and personal information are all my own.