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The Health Benefits of Homeownership

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When you own a home, you're building equity, enjoying tax benefits, and retaining complete control over living expenses. There are also several physical, mental, and social health benefits that come along with homeownership.

 

Homeownership offers people stability, a sense of responsibility, lifestyle control, and other benefits, all of which contribute to physical, mental, and social well-being. While owning a home is certainly not without its stresses, having more control over and responsibility for how you live can positively affect your health in more ways than one. Overall, homeownership can contribute to a healthier, happier life.

Stability

Stability is one of the greatest benefits of homeownership. When you purchase a home, the extensive mortgage process helps you understand thoroughly how much you can afford so you're not overwhelmed with a monthly house payment. For homeowners, this feeling of stability and peace of mind often comes with simply knowing you won’t be evicted or forced to move from defaulting on rent payments.

 

Many homeowners also feel a sense of community knowing that they are rooted in a local neighbourhood. The longer they live in one area, the more social connections they can make and meaningful relationships they can create. This sense of stability, of community, often manifests a positive mindset and feelings of security in the homeowner.

Sense of Responsibility and Control

Homeownership requires that you take on more responsibility and control over your living situation. As a homeowner, you're solely responsible for repairing your facilities and other household functionalities on your own should anything break or stop working. Those who cannot undergo repairs on their own often have to call a professional for help. While this control and responsibility can contribute to a healthier lifestyle, it can also create stress when things go wrong.

 

You may have to deal with a backed-up septic system or, if you are building your home, call a plumber for the installation of your plumbing system. Properly addressing and solving issues with your household's facilities when they come up is imperative for happy homeownership.

 

And while these issues can cause stress, research shows that owning a home and taking care of these things on your own can positively impact a person’s perception of control and life satisfaction, even in low-income households. This means that homeownership contributes to overall social well-being.

Physical and Mental Health Support

As a homeowner, you can use your home to support your specific mental and physical health needs in any way you choose. If you love to read, you can dedicate a specific room in your house to reading and collecting books. If you have a physical disability, you can create spaces that provide the right accommodations. If you love gardening, you can create and tend to your own garden. These are modifications you might not be able to do as a renter or while living with friends or family.

 

Having control over every aspect of your home also means promptly taking care of issues that can affect your physical health, like sewage exposure, for example. As the owner of your home, it is your responsibility to take care of these issues or hire a professional who can fix them for you.

Benefits to Children

Studies have shown that children of homeowners experience more positive life outcomes than children of renters. Owning a home can be beneficial to children and their physical and mental well-being. According to a University of Southern California article by Richard Green, “Ownership [of a home] is the method by which parents can assure their children stability.”

 

Children of homeowners are less likely to have to change schools and more likely to have quieter environments. Surveys conducted by Habitat for Humanity have found that homeownership can boost the educational performance of children, lower crime rates, and lessen welfare dependency, creating an ideal environment for your children and family.

Social and Community Benefits

Owning a home allows you to build up social connections and make a name for yourself in your local community.

 

According to a Harvard University study, “Strong and consistent evidence indicates that homeowners are more likely to: a) be satisfied with their homes and neighbourhoods; b) participate in voluntary and political activities; and c) stay in their homes longer, contributing to neighbourhood stability.” Neighbourhood stability and social connections help create a sense of belonging and life satisfaction, both of which contribute to a more positive mental state.

Improved Health Outcomes

Homeownership contributes to improved health outcomes for both children and adults. According to the Habitat for Humanity surveys linked previously, 74% percent of families said their overall health has improved since moving into their home.

 

Renters have less control over their living conditions than homeowners do, meaning that they have less control over how healthy their living conditions are. As a homeowner, you can create a safe and healthy environment for your family by keeping your home clean and taking care of any potentially hazardous issues that arise, including plumbing or sewer-related issues.

 

Not only can homeownership contribute to physical health, but it can improve your mental health (and your children’s mental health) as well.

 

Homeownership has many health benefits in addition to its financial benefits. When you own your own home, you have total control over your living situation, a feeling of stability, and the ability to offer your children more positive outcomes in life. Many families notice a decrease in healthcare costs and an overall feeling of well-being once they move into their own homes.