11 Things COVID-19 Has Made People Change About Their Home Lives
To learn the various adjustments people have made to their basic home lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, the experts at Homes.com, a Virginia-based real estate company, surveyed 1,000 people throughout the United States. Here's what people are doing more—and less—of!
Stocking up on non-perishable foods
If you've been inside a grocery store since stay-at-home orders became the norm, you've probably noticed that some items have been slim pickings. Grocery stores have even been limiting the amount of some products, like dry pasta, that a single customer can buy at a time. People are stocking up on things that will last longer, whether out of foresight to try to limit grocery store outings, panic-buying, or a mix of both. "The most popular answers for how people have adjusted their kitchens involve stocking up on foods that can last for long periods of time," the Homes.com survey results said.
If you're continuing to go out to grocery shop, here's how to stay safe and avoid germs.
For better or worse, a whole lot more people have become home chefs while stuck at home. With dining out pretty much a non-entity, people have had to cook for themselves more than ever before. "Over a third of respondents said they are now cooking more than they have in years," the survey results said. If you're one of those people, check out these super-simple recipes that don't require a trip to the store!
Buying more cleaning products
In another unsurprising development, the survey respondents told Homes.com what we already know: People all over the United States can't get their hands on cleaning products fast enough. In the closest to unanimous response in the entire survey, a full 80 per cent of those surveyed claimed to have "stocked up on various items, including toilet paper and cleaning supplies."
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Deep cleaning the bathroom
This widespread virus has made people go into overdrive on cleaning and disinfecting. Nearly 34 per cent of survey respondents have decided that safe is better than sorry when it comes to keeping their homes clean, saying that they've "deep cleaned and sanitized" their entire bathrooms. Nearly 25 per cent even said that they're cleaning the lavatory as frequently as every day or every other day.
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Washing towels more often
Those thorough bathroom cleanings aren't limited to surfaces, according to the survey; nearly 30 per cent of respondents said that they're washing their towels more frequently than they used to. In case you're wondering, here's how often you should be washing your bath towels.
The Homes.com survey results round-up listed, "I bought a bidet!" as one of the "most random" answers they heard, but if you've been paying attention to the news, you know that bidets are having a moment—and it's far more than a single survey respondent. Bidet sales have increased as much as tenfold, according to the New York Post, as people who are strapped for toilet paper have tried them out as another option.
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Though the bathroom might seem like the most obvious place for it, the deep cleaning has extended to bedrooms as people are "sanitizing" their bedding. Nearly 38 per cent of those surveyed said that they've given all of their bedclothes a deep clean while under quarantine, Homes.com's report said.
Changing up workspaces
Another notable way people's home lives are changing is, of course, that people have had to recreate "offices" and "classrooms" within the walls of their homes. According to the survey report, 45 per cent of people have had to turn some spots in their homes, such as "their living room or dining areas," into a workspace. One "random-answer" awardee even said that their home office was in their camper in their driveway! And more than 20 per cent were actually already somewhat equipped for this situation, saying that they'd had a designated home office space already.
Spending more time with pets...
Pets old and new are providing a major comfort during this time. Spending time with pets was the most popular answer to the survey's question about the best way to cope with the upended reality of COVID-19. Nearly a third of respondents named time with Fido or Fluffy as their preferred way of dealing with the current circumstances. And some changes go beyond just spending more time with pets; social isolation has made some people take the leap and get, or foster, a furry friend.
...and on screens
For survey respondents, consuming funny content online was "a close second" for the favorite coping mechanism, coming in just behind pet lovers' at less than 33 per cent. And while many appreciated the way online videos could take the edge off—and more than half of respondents lauded the way technology allows them to get in touch with loved ones—tech has been a blessing and a curse. Just shy of a third of survey respondents said that spending too much time glued to screens was their "greatest challenge" during this time. (Although, if that's your greatest challenge right now, definitely count your blessings!)
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Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating economic effect, and many people who have lost their jobs are really struggling financially. But other people are noticing that their spending has gone drastically down, and they're actually saving quite a bit of dough. Thirty-nine per cent of the survey respondents asked what they thought the "best" part of the quarantine was, said that it was "saving money on eating out and entertainment." As much as we obviously miss those things, we can appreciate how much money we're saving without them.
Next, find out how to support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.