Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  09 May 2011

PROPERTY: Female Bond Applications On The Rise


Recent Western Cape Business News

The number of single female homebuyers in South Africa has risen significantly over the last four years, on the back of an increase in single person households and as women gain better positions in the workplace, according to ooba – Cape Town's bond originator.

The ratio of women to men in single person home loan applications to ooba has increased from 36.53% in January 2007 to a current level of  46.94%. In total, single person applications presently make up 49.65% of applications in  comparison to the 50.35%of joint applications.

Jenny Rushin, Western Cape Provincial Sales Manager at ooba, says this is a very positive development for the South African property market. “The South African constitution has enshrined equality so it is pleasing to note that the dynamics of the historically male dominated property market has evolved. “A steady increase in the number of women in the workplace, particularly those occupying more managerial top level jobs which command higher income earnings, has helped to shift the balance towards a more equal ratio among homebuyers.

The fact that so many more women are part of the job market has had an impact on the male/female home loan application ratios. Now that females are more focused on creating their own wealth portfolio, credit, such as home loan finance, is far more easily accessible to them individually,” says Rushin.  As a result, purchasing property has become an ideal long-term wealth creation goal for women as much as men.

The record 30 year low interest rate environment has also certainly made property purchasing more affordable for single women, however, there are some important key factors that any buyers, male or female, need to bear in mind when looking for a home.”

Firstly, women looking to enter the property market should ensure that they have a sufficient deposit to put down. Besides improving your chances of getting a home loan approved, a deposit will result in a more favourable bond rate, which will save you in interest over the term of the loan. As a home loan is paid back over a long period, generally between 20 and 25 years, even a small reduction in the interest rate on your bond, can save you thousands in interest payments over time.”

She also says that a positive credit profile and a stable employment history will assist females when applying for home loan finance. “Employment history is very important as it reflects a pattern of stability and income. For most lenders a consistent income stream is key when working out how much one can borrow. Lenders will also want to look at your credit history, so that they can see a historic pattern of borrowing and repayment as well as how you have managed your bank accounts and other credit facilities.”

When looking for a new home it is strongly advisable that you are pre-qualified, as this will give you a good sense as to the value of the property that you will be able to purchase,” says Rushin.

The pre-qualification process can also pick up credit issues on your record that would need to be fixed before you can formally apply to a bank. This process not only streamlines the home buying process, but also ensures that the buyer is able to negotiate from a position of strength.”

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