The COVID-19 pandemic upended just about everything this year, and that includes much of the home-buying process. A new study from Clever revealed that homebuyers who bought between January and May this year are twice as likely to have anxiety and stress than those who bought in the last five years.
The study also showed that 42% of homeowners who made a purchase during the January to May time period ended up in a bidding war, demonstrating the strong demand for homes amid low inventory.
In addition, the study showed the strains caused by COVID-19 shutdowns, which resulted in record-breaking numbers of workers filing for unemployment. According to Clever, 59.29% of homeowners who purchased their home before the World Health Organization declared the pandemic said that someone who typically contributes to housing costs lost their job during the pandemic.
Meanwhile, those who purchased their home since March (50.48%) were less likely to have lost a job, while stimulus check payments contributed to down payments for 21.1% of homebuyers.
Clever said that 84% of homebuyers who purchased their home before April 28 were able to pay their mortgage in full. Of recent homebuyers, 55% said they’re paying their mortgage in full, but only 45% are able to pay if a financial contributor has lost their job.
Even out of those who said they were still paying their mortgage in full, 53.78% said they were somewhat concerned and 25.14% said they were very concerned about being able to pay their mortgage in the coming months due to COVID-19 hardships. This number might change a little since the Federal Housing Administration and Federal Housing Finance Agency both announced they would be extending eviction moratoriums.
When Clever surveyed people who purchased their home between 2015 and 2019, many buyers said they were likely to feel happier and more secure because of homeownership.
However, when Clever performed the same study in 2020, those homebuyers were more than two times as likely to report feelings of anxiety, almost two times as likely to report stress, and nearly half as likely to say homeownership makes them feel comfortable and secure than those who bought in the last five years.
While many homeowners worry about cosmetic things, 36.24% of homeowners said they are worried that the pandemic might affect their home value.