How COVID affects homeownership among single women
Today’s HousingWire Daily episode, features an interview with Odeta Kushi, deputy chief economist for First American. In this episode, Kushi discusses her recent article which digs into whether or not the pandemic will affect homeownership demand among single women in America.
Here is a small preview of the interview with Kushi, which has been lightly edited for length and clarity:
HousingWire: We’re now more than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, and although normalcy seems to be on the horizon, Americans are still experiencing the economic hardship and impact of this health crisis. This is especially so for women, as First American’s data shows they have been disproportionately impacted by this pandemic, or “she-cession” as you say. What are some of the causes, and will these factors affect homeownership demand among women?
Odeta Kushi: Unfortunately, women have been disproportionately hurt, economically speaking by this pandemic. Women make up the majority of workers in the frontline sectors and we know that this was the great recession for the services sector, specifically leisure and hospitality. Women, specifically younger and less educated women, are overrepresented in service-sector jobs, making this a so-called ‘she-secession.’ But we know from prior research that homeownership is actually highly correlated with being older and more educated. While the pandemic-driven recession has been incredibly devastating for many people, the nature of the service sector-driven recession is unlikely to result in a one-to-one decline in homeownership demand for single women. This is because those impacted disproportionately by the ‘she-secession’ are much less likely to have been house hunting in the first place. Now looking ahead, the labor market recovery is picking up, and with pending control of the virus, the pace of recovery should improve, which should help to lift all workers. Kind of the outlook for single women homeownership in the medium and the long term, particularly for Millennial women, should rise due to increasing educational attainment, income and an overall desire for homeownership and wealth-building through homeownership.
HousingWire Daily examines the most compelling articles reported from the HousingWire newsroom. Each afternoon, we provide our listeners with a deeper look into the stories coming across our newsroom that are helping Move Markets Forward. Hosted by the HW team and produced by Alcynna Lloyd and Victoria Wickham.