Desiree Patno, founder and CEO of the National Association of Women in Real Estate Businesses
By Lauren Tussey
Female homeowners are growing in numbers. As they skyrocket within the housing market, they pave the path for future generations of women to do the same. Desiree Patno, founder and CEO of the National Association of Women in Real Estate Businesses, highlighted the importance of female homeowners while leading a Saturday session at the REALTORS® Conference & Expo in Chicago, “The Value and Power of Women’s Homeownership.”
Single women who pursue homeownership do for reasons related to a desire for freedom, and to live how and where they want, Patno said. Last year, NAR data found that single women compromised 17 percent of homebuyers in the country, compared to single men at 7 percent. These unmarried buyers are not waiting for a spouse to receive the many perks of homeownership, Patno said, such as building wealth, having a stable home to raise children, being able to accommodate pets, and feeling connected to the community in which they live. Many of these buyers have taken a second job or adjusted their budgets to afford a down payment, Patno adds.
“[These women] are living their single lives fully, and they are empowered,” Patno said.
Patno also addressed diversity inclusion in the workplace and stressed how vital it is to have women and minorities included on all management levels within a real estate company. She suggested that real estate professionals get a “Women Owned Small Business” certification for their business in order to attract clients looking to work with women.
“Don’t push the fluff—[women] will see right through you,” Patno said. “They want service and they want knowledge.”