Every year, more and more societal standards are being flipped on their head. People are getting hitched later, refusing to move out to the suburbs…and not waiting for marriage to own a home. According to insurance company Hippo, 60 percent of millennials are buying independently. Nothing is off-limits, from purchasing their apartments in the city to snapping up a secondary vacation property elsewhere. And not just any millennials are twisting tradition; the majority of single homeowners happen to be women. The Bank of America Homebuyer Insights Report found that more than 66 percent of women wouldn’t wait for a partner to buy a house. 

A single income is still a major barrier to ownership, no matter the amount of coffee you make at home rather than spending on Starbucks. Despite saving more on average than both men and Gen-Zers for a down payment, 74 percent of women still say that feeling financially secure is the most important factor when they’re looking at listings. Just ask McKenzie Milhousen—purchasing on her own almost bankrupted her…twice. After acquiring (and renovating) a $650,000 one-bedroom in the Hamptons, she has some advice to share, below. 

Think Long-Term

This place was definitely at the top of my budget, but I paid for location. Find a property where you can prove there is an upside (like easily selling it) to rally together investors to help you get it. 

Tap Into Nontraditional  Financial Sources

I’m very fortunate that I had the ability to put together an investor pool with a couple family members, who fronted a portion of the cash I needed for my down payment and renovations. In return, I pay them an annual agreed-upon interest payment. I also tapped into my 401(k) to front renovation costs, which then allowed me to rent my home.

Rent It Out

Out here in the Hamptons, I need to rent my home for three months of the year to be able to afford it, so my house is actually my secondary income. If I ever get into a bind, I know the house could be rented out pretty quickly, which would cover at least 75 percent of its operating costs.

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