Men and women have always had their differences, and—let’s face it—buying a house is no exception. A 1,000-respondent omnibus phone survey by Coldwell Banker Real Estate gives us some clues as to gender similarities and differences. Are any of these true for you and your partner? First, the differences:
Decision-making speedIt is the women who make the faster decisions when it comes to buying a house. Surprised? The fairer sex is more likely to decide on a house the day they walk into it, possibly because they rely on gut feeling. Men, often more logic-oriented, need more time and more visits to make a final decision.
Proximity to job and family Women prefer to be close to extended family over their jobs, while just the opposite is true for a significantly majority of men polled. Makes sense, considering traditional caretaker/breadwinner roles make sense for many couples.
Individual financial decisionsMore men than women think they “wear the pants” when it comes to major financial decisions like buying a house, although some women so feel this way too. Curiously enough, most of the respondents—men and women—said that they, and not their partners, were the ones more likely to make major decisions. Perception is everything!
Here are some areas the sexes generally see eye-to-eye on:
Mutual financial decisionsWhether men or women think they have more decision-making power, a high percentage of couples prefer to share the responsibility and make major financial decisions together.
Use of spare roomsBoth men and women are fairly practical about how a spare room should be used—choosing bedroom, study, and den, in that order. Interestingly, men make up the majority of a small group of respondents who would convert a spare room into a recreation room, or “man cave.” It seems pool tables, darts, and pinball machines have their place!
SecurityA high percentage of both men and women would back out of a promising deal if safety becomes an issue, although this factor is more important to women than men.
What does it all mean?Each couple is unique. Pay special attention and it’s easier to understand what matters to your partner. It may sound obvious, but don’t forget to talk before you make a decision. In the end, statistics provide perspective, but nothing can replace good old-fashioned communication, especially when it comes to such an important decision as buying a home!