Why are so many women getting into construction-related fields? I’ve noticed this trend growing lately, from my personal experiences. I am a remodeling contractor in Cincinnati, Ohio, so I come across a lot of investors that are flipping houses and, in the past few years, I’ve noticed a significant increase in the number of women who are real estate investors and that actually do some of the work themselves.
In 2014 I met many successful female real estate investors through Cincinnati’s Real Estate Investors Association (REIA). I soon realized that there are about an equal number of women and men investing in Cincinnati houses, and very often the women are more successful than the men.
At Cincinnati’s REIA, I met a 26-year-old woman who now owns 11 houses and does a lot of the work herself.
I met another who buys and remodels houses, having someone else do the physical labor. Also, it turns out that the president of this REIA club, named Vena Cox-Jones, is a woman and probably the most successful investor in the city. On top of all that, I also renovated a house in Cincinnati for the owner of this website, Christiane Marshall. I’ve met more women this year who even do the physical labor part of remodeling. I met three women who are painters; I’ve worked with them and none of them had any problems carrying or climbing the ladders we used. I met a woman who owns her own roofing company and did most of the work herself.
I’ve always found it to be fantastically innovative and interesting to see women in the construction fields, typically a “man’s world.” I also expect that women will face the same challenges they have faced getting into other job markets. While taking drafting and design courses at ITT Tech, I met several female students in the same program as mine, so I asked them why they wanted to be in construction. “I want to design houses, learn energy-efficient designs. I don’t want to pay any utility bills ever, just live off the land,” said April Meeks, ITT Tech student. Another ITT Tech student, Jazmine Williams, said, “I come from an artsy family. My dad’s a designer and my mom’s a freelance artist. I think it’s gratifying to see your final product when it’s finished. I’ve always wanted to design a museum.”
Considering April’s and Jazmine’s responses, I think it’s safe to say that drafting and design is a good fit for their personalities. Their responses were different in nature, just as everybody has their own unique reason for anything they do. I think it’s because of women like Jane Addams and Susan B. Anthony, who were pioneers and fought for women’s rights, that all these women are able to get into this field. Not so long ago, women weren’t allowed to work in the construction industry. I consider all of these women to be strong-minded pioneers. Good job, ladies!