It can be quite shocking when as a single woman trying to find an apartment; you are rebuffed by landlords and told that for one reason or the other, you would not be given an apartment. These scenarios are becoming more rampant as the days go by.
Imagine yourself as a vibrant, hard working woman; you are on a journey of self-discovery, intelligent, focused and an achiever. You are all of these things but there is a tiny problem, YOU CANNOT RENT AN APARTMENT. You are told you should either live with your parents, elder siblings or relatives. ANYWHERE BUT ALONE!
Some landlords will refuse to rent to you until they have spoken to your father to make sure that he is okay with it, even though you are paying with your own money.
Now, these landlords give reasons like:
- I don’t want a single woman in my house
- Single women are promiscuous.
- Single women might not be able to meet up with the bills.
- A woman should either live with her husband or her parents.
- Single women are disrespectful.
In an interview carried out in August 2018 by BBC, the plight of single women when house hunting was succinctly discussed by several women sharing their experiences at the hands of agents and landlords.
A successful career woman, Olufunmilola Ogungbile, 30, never thought that she would be sleeping on a friend’s couch after five months of apartment-hunting in Abeokuta city in south-western Nigeria.
Ms Ogungbile believes the hurdles she faced are down to cultural expectations – marriage is a benchmark used to measure decency.
“In this part of the world, if you are not married then you are a prostitute,” she added.
Coleman Nwafor, a landlord and property owner, said he does not discriminate, but most of his tenants and buyers are men because they have more money. He told BBC;
“Most single ladies are under the responsibility of their parents or a lover. You can never tell what will happen after the first year. And every landlord wants a tenant who will pay without stress and renew their contract once it expires. Most single ladies are not working. There are more jobs for men than women in Nigeria. That is just the way it is.”
It is like a woman without a man is no woman these days. Women are being made to believe that only a man can give them full satisfaction and completeness. You would be doing yourself wrong by subscribing to these beliefs.
No matter the excuse given, there is no gainsaying that all of these can be demoralizing and confusing, especially when you are a hard worker who just finds herself unmarried.
Listen, Never has societal trends ever been allowed to rule a person and you should not let it do so to you now. Do not get so discouraged that you get into a relationship with the very first man who offers you marriage – one who your inner mind tells you is not for you.
ALSO READ: GWOMAN DERIN FABIKUN IS BREAKING FORTH
There is someone for you and when the time is right, you would find each other and you do not need to torment yourself endlessly over it.
Believe. Breathe. Live. Believe.
You should keep your head up, keep searching and hope you will get lucky enough to find a house owner who believes in the very essence of womanhood.