Factoring gender into your apartment search

by Joe Zekas on 2/13/13

A Trulia consumer survey reveals that 62% of unmarried adults “prefer to date someone who lives alone,” according to a recent Trulia blog post.

Jed Kolko, Trulia’s chief economist, set out to identify the neighborhoods in different cities with the highest female-to-male and male-to-female ratios for adults 65 and under who live alone. The study’s methodology was carefully constructed to exclude gays, and people living in group homes and correctional facilities.

In Chicago, ZIP Code 60661 (West Loop) skewed the heaviest toward male singles, and 60610 (Gold Coast, Old Town) toward females. These areas have buildings with a unit mix dominated by the studio and 1-bedroom apartments that typically house singles.

If meeting members of the opposite sex ranks among the search criteria for your next apartment, you might want to consult Trulia’s neighborhood heat map, which makes it easy to identify the areas with the highest numerical gender gap among singles. Individual buildings, of course, may have a gender skew that varies, sometimes strongly, in a positive or negative direction from the neighborhood – or a dominant age cohort that doesn’t match your preference.

Fair housing laws prevent real estate agents from answering your questions about the demographics of different neighborhoods and buildings, so don’t ask. Or, ask as a way of determining whether you’re dealing with a professional, ethical agent.

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