The hidden cost of finding a home: How is the housing crisis affecting America’s mental health?

The hidden cost of finding a home: How is the housing crisis affecting America’s mental health?
The stress of hunting for a home is very real. 

If you work hard and save harder, you will eventually be able to afford to take your first step on the property ladder. Only, with the United States housing market short by 7.2 million properties, there are no homes on the market for you to buy—and those that do get listed sell for a premium.

The team at NewHomesMate recently surveyed 1,000 Americans on how the housing crisis impacts them. The results show that it isn’t just the finances that many struggle with, but also the mental strain, with 60% of Americans admitting that the housing market has negatively affected their mental well-being.

Key findings:

  • For 60% of US adults, the state of the housing market has caused them mental anguish.
  • Some 27% experience stress, 14% suffer from anxiety, 11% have insomnia, and 8% eat more or drink more alcohol to cope.
  • 33% and 42% respectively are envious of social media stars and celebrities’ luxurious homes, with 11% experiencing depression as a result.

The mental anguish of unaffordable housing

With rent prices having crept up by 2.5% annually since 2008 and house prices at an all-time high, stopping many from finding their foot on the property ladder, it isn’t uncommon for the housing market to put a strain on our mental health.

In fact, when questioned on the impact the current market crisis and rising home prices have had on their mental well-being, 27% of people told us they are constantly stressed, 11% struggle to sleep at night, and 14% suffer from anxiety or panic attacks.

For 8% of people, dealing with the anxiety of navigating America’s housing market has led to concerning lifestyle changes, such as eating more or drinking more alcohol that will only worsen the mental and physical effects, the survey revealed.

The solution? Build more houses, ensure supply meets demand, and make homeownership attainable again. With all the modern amenities that come with a new construction home, everyone will be able to enjoy a life of luxury, finally free from the mental strain of browsing properties that we can’t really afford.

Longing to live like the stars

How often do you find yourself scrolling endlessly, searching for funny videos to distract you from the lack of affordable properties in your area, only to come across wealthy influencers seemingly unphased by unmanageable mortgage rates, a severe shortage of suitable properties, and real estate prices that won’t stop rising?

With social media stars seemingly having it so easy, 33% of respondents told us they have felt jealous after seeing influencers living it up in luxury. While it isn’t enough to affect most people mentally, the study revealed that 11% have worryingly suffered from depression after comparing their homes to those owned by TikTokers and Instagrammers.

It isn’t just the lavish properties on social media that make us jealous. In fact, seeing the homes of Hollywood’s finest, music chart-toppers, and leading athletes makes us feel even worse. The study found that 42% of people are envious of celebrities’ luxurious homes, with 10% experiencing depression as a result.

But comparing yourself to the rich and famous won’t get you on the property ladder, so log out of social media, switch off the TV, put down the magazines—and focus your time and effort on strengthening your earnings, growing your down payment, and achieving your dream of homeownership.

Methodology: To create this study, NewHomesMate surveyed 1,000 Americans aged over 18 years old from all over the U.S. The study includes participants of all genders and social backgrounds.

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