Buying A Home As A Single Parent – Factors to Consider

As society approaches an age of progressive thinking with increased emphasis on individual freedom, more single parents are considering being homeowners and fortunately enough, it’s become easier than before for working parents to buy a property whether they’re a single mother or a father. According to a report by the UN, roughly “4.5% of all Indian households are run by single mothers.” A single parent buying a house has to be extra cautious as the entire responsibility of the home buying process (no matter with help from family and friends), is still befalling a lone pair of shoulders. 

Let’s explore some critical perspectives. 

Get your finances in order

If you have the following, you can be an eligible single parent candidate for a home loan: 

  • A regular source of income upon which a loan can be granted along with good credit ratings.
  • (Or a stable business/self-employment).
  • Single mothers qualify if their age at the time of sanction is between 18-70. 
  • Possess the required documents such as –
    • PAN CARD, AADHAR Card, completed loan application
    • Govt issued ID proofs such as driver’s license, voter ID, passport
    • Residential proof like electricity and utilities bills, bank account statements, other relevant documents like birth certificates, etc.
    • Declaration and proof of personal assets, collateral 

However, you’d have to create savings to make the down payment. 

Financial tips for single parents before buying a home

Invest in a child education plan (with professional consulting) so that the child’s educational benefits are guaranteed even during potential unstable financial conditions. Make sure the insurance cover increases over years based on the number of children you have. 

Consider investing in security and wealth baskets monitored by professionals and choosing to spread your investments in different SIPs/equity funds. If your savings are limited, you can try different low-yield insurance policies as well. 

Figuring out the priorities of what you need from the property

As a parent, you’d need to live where your child has access to good schools, public transport, cultural spots, and other factors according to your lifestyle. You’d also need to consider the apartment’s location (which floor, how many bedrooms, bathrooms, and other amenities that you might expect in the housing societies like a nursery, gym, swimming pool, tennis courtyard, and others). 

Other points to consider are the distance from home to school, especially when residing in urban cities where the commute is a factor and the availability of immediate medical care/clinics around the house. 

If you’re taking a home loan, it’s wise to keep the installment at around 30% of your total salary so that you can live comfortably with the remaining amount and be able to save. 

LearnHow Home loans help you save on income tax

Look for a stable and welcoming community

Whether you’re widowed, divorced, or separated, you’d need to surround yourself with a support system that not just includes family and friends, but also neighbors and community. As the adage goes, ‘it takes a village to raise a child’. The housing community where you decide to live should have supportive and understanding neighbors. If a society has an end to end security and society management app like MyGate, it’s great news for single parents as it works on a passcode verification system of gatekeeping so that the premises are completely safe and child safety protocol, where a child is not allowed to leave the premises unaccompanied without prior permission from the parent. 

Does the house have a good resale value?

As a single parent, do not be pressured to buy a property without a future potential even though it may come cheap. You need to factor in the market value of the property, its location, its size, proximity to public utilities, shopping malls, etc, and get a professional appraisal done in case you’re not buying a brand new home.

Look for grants and aids

As a single mother, you can avail the benefits of low-interest rates on home loans from nationalised banks like SBI and others. Some states may even provide exemption on stamp duty and registration charges, sale deeds, conveyance deeds if the buyer is a woman. Under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, if you’re a (single parent included) household with an annual income between Rs 6 lakh and Rs 12 lakh fall under MIG (middle income groups) I while households with an annual income between Rs 12 lakh and Rs 18 lakh fall under MIG II category hence you’re eligible for interest subsidies of 4% and 3% on loan amount up to Rs 9 lakh and Rs 12 lakh (MIG I and MIG II categories only). More details.

It is recommended that as a single parent without prior experience in property purchase, you should hire a reliable estate agent who can help you navigate through the entire proceedings with expert guidance. 

What do you think?