08 March 2013 Queen of the castle

Australian women aren't waiting for a knight in shining armour to get their castle.

Census data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows 61 per cent of women own their own home, compared to 58 per cent of men.

And the disparity is even greater among singles, with 65 per cent of single-female households owned compared to 55 per cent of single-male households.

Professor Roslyn Russell from the RMIT School of Economics and Finance said the numbers had surprised her, but reflected research she was conducting into the factors underlying women's financial decision-making.

"There was a sense that they no longer expect a knight in shining armour to take care of them and buy them a house,'' Prof Russell said.

"They are starting to see the reality that they can take care of themselves, and they are.''

The research has also revealed that many younger women are now aware of instances where older women in their lives have been left without access to super or home ownership after a divorce and that relationship dynamics had changed between men and women.

Gia Felix, 41, of Narre Warren South has just purchased her third property and said the ABS figures surprised her, but with discipline more women could enter the market.

"Being single I'm quite aware of the fact that I don't have anybody else to support me, being financially secure puts my destiny in my hands,'' Ms Felix said.

The mother of one does have a partner, but the two keep their properties separate and live apart.

Northcote based real estate agent Gino De Iesi said he has seen an increasing number of women entering the market as buyers over the last few years, but also noted many more are buying with siblings.

Reproduced in part with permission: News Limited Network Queen of the castle 8 March 2013

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