Happy Homeowners Of America

by Dr. Karen Ruskin on July 27, 2016

As HomeAdvisor’s Happiness Advisor, I have an exciting opportunity as a Psychotherapist who specializes in relationships to talk about and analyze HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey. It is my opinion that our home affects our relationship with our self, our family, friends/neighbors, just as our relationship with our own health and wellness, and our relationship with others (family, friends/neighbors), affects our relationship with our home. With the largest survey of it’s kind, HomeAdvisor received nearly 18,000 responses to their survey from homeowners in 50 states to uncover which States and Cities are the happiest vs. the least happy, and the main factors affecting homeowner happiness. The outcome? What did we learn? Are you ready for it? We learned that America’s homeowners are mostly happy with their homes and where they live! 

We Are A Nation of Happy Homeowners!

The overwhelming majority of homeowners are happy homeowners, according to the results of HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey. The average score for homeowner happiness is a 75%, imagine that! Therefore, when you look on HomeAdvisor’s website to check out HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey to see the results of your City/State’s ranking, don’t get scared or confused if you have a score of a C- or a D, or even an F. Also, try not to get too high and mighty if you scored an A or B+. For the scores are relative to one another. What the take away is that most are happy where they live, there are only small differences between each State/City. This fun outcome, that America’s homeowner’s are mostly happy, is not the only interesting discovery from this survey!

An additional noteworthy discovery resulting from HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey is the following:

Homeowner Happiness Boils Down To A Combination Of Three Main Factors:

  1. Community (Relationships with neighbors, feeling safe).
  2. Accessibility (Practical commutes and access to attractions and services. Convenience to amenities, activities of interest, and work).
  3. Dwelling  (Overall comfort in the design of one’s home. The affordability and thus comfort offered by the design. The number of bedrooms and bathrooms is less important to homeowners then a dwelling that has a style one likes, a personalized design and natural light).

Satellite Media Tour

HomeAdvisor SMTOn Friday July 22, 2016 the results of HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey was revealed, where I had the opportunity to share this information state-to-state during a satellite media tour. From first thing in the morning till the afternoon I was in studio from Boston, where I spoke with various affiliate news outlets from ABC to FOX to NBC, ranging from Colorado to Indiana to North Carolina to Texas to Las Vegas to New Mexico, and more . . . With 20+ interviews in a jam packed fun filled day, TV new programs and radio stations participated. It was awesome meeting on air the different anchors and hosts for the various programs answering their questions.

As a mental health professional, having the opportunity to utilize the vessel of news outlets to touch the lives of homeowners is phenomenal. De-stigmatizing mental health by talking about what action items one can take to create happiness, that we as humans are in control of our choices and how those choices affect our happiness, our homeowner happiness, was an excellent opportunity as a Psychotherapist. For I believe we can make choices each day that affect one’s happiness, one’s homeowner happiness.

Just but two examples during this satellite media tour discussing homeowner happiness included my interview with TV host Molly Fay of TMJ’s NBC affiliate on ‘The Morning Blend‘ in Milwaukee, WI. She verbalized to me that it must be a great gig to be the Happiness Advisor to HomeAdvisor. Yes, indeed! Sharing on air action items one can take to increase one’s happiness and thus improve mental health is a true opportunity as a health care professional. As I get to touch many lives all at once. While on FOX 5’s KVVU Las Vegas, I had the opportunity to share with anchor Monica Jackson, along with their viewers, the results of the homeowner happiness survey, thus touching the lives of the many.

Happy Homeowner Tips & Talking Points:

Life Stages

Life stages affects one’s level of happiness when considering one life stage to another. For example, in HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey, results showed that empty-nesters are happier then young singles. I explained on air that if we think about the three factors discovered in the survey, it makes sense that empty-nesters are happier then young singles. For empty-nesters are older homeowners, thus they have likely had more time and money to work on their homes (dwelling), and have settled into a community they wish to reside in (neighbors, accessibility). Whereas young singles opt for homes they can afford. Proximity to activities and interests, money to create a dwelling of comfort, and getting to know one’s neighbors and spending time with them is not the main focus at this stage of life.

Control What You Can Control

Places that are more urban, have good weather, have an active culture scene and arts, and higher income levels plays a role in homeowner happiness, according to the results of HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey. From a mental health professional’s perspective, I say: control your control-ables! Take ownership of what is in your control to create happiness. As happiness is in one’s control.

Community: Actively connect with your neighbors, throw a block party. Just because there is not an active culture nearby, create your own activity via socialization.

Accessibility: I say, take ownership of what you do with your time. Make the decision not to let being a distance from an activity of interest, or the weather (sometimes that affects a person from doing something they enjoy), stop you from participating in healthy activities.

Dwelling/Income: Don’t let finances stop you from creating a dwelling that is comfortable for you. You can do small remodeling projects that are not high in cost. For an example, the colors in your home can affect your mood. Therefore, consider light blue paint colors on your walls, which is soothing to the spirit. Also, natural light affects mood. Therefore, if you have a home office and your desk is on the wall without the window, make a change, put your desk over by the window. Also, create a spot in your home for something you used to enjoy when you were young and haven’t done in a while (e.g., jump rope, paint). It only takes a small spot to create a dwelling that adds to your comfort.

Note: If you are going to engage in a home re-model, I invite you to check out the info-graphic HomeAdvisor put together in response to an interview they had with me where I focused specifically on insights into how to keep one’s relationship healthy during a home re-model. Arguing and conflict during a re-model is common, yet it need not define your relationship. Check out my tips for: Relationship Safe Re-Modeling.


Build relationships in your home. For relationships fostered within the home are of the utmost importance to overall happiness. Each day with words and actions make the time and take the time to do something kind for your household members to build relational happiness. Additionally, make the time and take the time to engage not only with your family in the home, also with friends and family out of the home, and spice up your dwelling to make it comfy for you. Specifically, create your own home identity. Define your happy home as a shared family identity, or an individual haven, depending on whom you are living with of course. The relationship you have with your family, the relationship you have with your home, all affects your homeowner happiness.

Learn More About HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey

If you are interested in learning more about HomeAdvisor’s Homeowner Happiness Survey, including the results, check out the ranks of your City or State, compare those outcomes to another City or State, I invite you to check it out.

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