Half of Americans cry at least once while buying a home
More than 65% of Gen Z buyers and 61% of millennial buyers report crying at least once during their home-buying journey, according to a new Zillow survey
SEATTLE, June 2, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Buying a home in today’s competitive market can be a stressful experience, often most similar to the stress of planning a wedding or being fired. A new Zillow® survey1 shows 50% of home buyers say the process left them in tears, with Gen Zers and millennials — many of whom are first-time home buyers – far more likely to cry at least once during their home-buying journey. More than 65% of Gen Z buyers and 61% of millennial buyers cried at least once when going through the process of purchasing their home.
It’s no wonder. In today’s low-inventory market, homes are receiving multiple offers and oftentimes selling for over list price; 60% of sellers report getting at least two offers on their home2, and nearly half of all homes sold in the U.S. in April 2022 went for over the asking price, up from 37% a year ago.
Additionally, some buyers planning to finance their purchase with a home loan are losing out to others who are able to pay entirely in cash, which is seen as a more attractive offer to a seller, since they don’t need to worry about the sale falling through in the financing stage. According to Zillow’s survey, nearly 30% of recent buyers said they lost to an all-cash buyer at least once.
“Buying a home is not like buying any other asset; it’s deeply personal and it’s emotional,” said Zillow home trends expert Amanda Pendleton. “When you make an offer on a home, you have likely envisioned your life there. If you lose out on that home to a stronger offer, it can feel like losing a future you have already started planning. These survey results find, even when they are ultimately successful, a large share of buyers in today’s competitive market experience heartache and stress.”
Nearly 90% of recent buyers Zillow surveyed said at least one aspect of the home-buying process was stressful.
Buying a home can be challenging for many reasons. Among those buyers surveyed, 62% were stressed about being able to find a home within their budget, 61% were stressed about not having enough homes to choose from, and 58% were stressed about finding a home in their preferred neighborhood.
The stress of buying is experienced differently among racial groups, as well. Latinx buyers were far more likely to report crying at least once (68%) compared to Black (51%) and white (48%) buyers. And 26% of buyers of color reported “losing out” on a home because of financing falling through, compared to 18% of white buyers. Zillow research has shown that Black mortgage applicants are denied 84% more often than white borrowers.
There are about 23% fewer homes on the market than a year ago, which increases competition and leads many buyers to feel the need to waive crucial contingencies in order to stand out. Zillow’s survey found that nearly 40% of buyers waived a contingency, such as their financing or inspection contingency, on at least one of their offers.
Even in this fast-paced market, there are still steps buyers can take to help relieve the stress of the process:
- Finance first – Before browsing listings, buyers should start by understanding what they can afford by leveraging Zillow’s home loans page. This is where buyers can find a mortgage calculator, compare lenders and rates, and get pre-approval for a mortgage, allowing them to act fast when they find the one.
- Hire a top-rated agent – By using Zillow’s agent finder tool, buyers can read reviews of top-rated real estate agents in their area. Hiring an agent with the right skills and experience can help buyers win in a multiple-offer situation or a tough negotiation.
- Use tech for a speed advantage – Buyers can quickly compare home features side by side using Zillow’s Homes to Compare tool, which allows shoppers to compare as many as five homes on more than 70 key listing details. Buyers can also save searches and update their email preferences to receive alerts about new for-sale listings the minute they hit the market.
For more tips from Zillow on how to stand out as a buyer in a competitive market, visit the Zillow blog here.
About Zillow Group
Zillow Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z and ZG) is reimagining real estate to make it easier to unlock life’s next chapter. As the most visited real estate website in the United States, Zillow® and its affiliates offer customers an on-demand experience for selling, buying, renting or financing with transparency and ease.
Zillow Group’s affiliates and subsidiaries include Zillow®, Zillow Premier Agent®, Zillow Home Loans™, Zillow Closing Services™, Trulia®, Out East®, ShowingTime®, Bridge Interactive®, dotloop®, StreetEasy® and HotPads®. Zillow Home Loans, LLC is an Equal Housing Lender, NMLS #10287 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org).
1 Zillow Group Population Science conducted a nationally representative survey of more than 2,000 people who purchased a home in the past two years or who intend to buy a home in the next 12 months. The study was fielded from February through April 2022.
2 According to Zillow’s 2021 Consumer Housing Trends Report, 60% of home sellers surveyed in 2021 reported getting at least two offers on their home.