Updated: August 26, 2011

"Many unmarried women don't think they're ready tomake such a major purchase," says Ilona Bray, co-authorof Nolo's Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home. Toease the intimidation factor, she debunks three big fears:

  • I'LL FEEL ISOLATED
    If you'renervous that living in a homeby yourself will separate youfrom your friends, remember:Your investment should fityour lifestyle starting today.Moving to the burbs mightgive you more for your money,but many single women arehappier trading extra spacefor a better social life. If this isyou, look at areas near pals,shopping, jogging trails, andrestaurants, says Bray.

  • I WON'T FEEL SAFE ON MYOWN
    You may think you'remore secure in a big apartmentbuilding, but with a littleresearch, you can find a houseand neighborhood that makeyou feel comfortable, saysBray. Seek out a second opinion(other than your Realtor's)by talking to residents andcontacting your local policeprecinct for crime stats. "Alsolook at the layout," she says."If a place has easy points ofentry-like a glass front dooror low windows-pass on it."

  • I WON'T BE ABLE TO RESELLIT
    Chances are you'lleventually change cities,switch jobs, get married, orfind a space you love more, soyou do need to consider resalepotential before you sign. Onesurefire way? Make sure yourmortgage doesn't have apre-pay penalty, says Bray.Then you won't be fined forpaying it off early.

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