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World Mental Health Day: Survey Reveals the Importance of Our Homes on Mental Health

World Mental Health Day study reveals demand for improvements
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A study marking World Mental Health Day has revealed that one in four homeowners want a better-designed home to improve their mental health and happiness.

The study, from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), sought to understand the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on homeowners and how this has affected the way we live and work at home.

What Did the Study Reveal?

Conducted in advance of World Mental Health Day, the study discovered that homeowners increasingly want to improve their homes to reflect their changing circumstances. 

Around one in four (23%) homeowners believe that a better-designed home will increase their happiness; 31% said they’d be able to relax more; and 17% said it would help them sleep better.

Some of the most popular improvements homeowners are planning include: 

Kunle Barker, TV presenter and property developer, said of the findings: “Good design in our homes is crucial for our wellbeing. This year, through forces outside of our control we have been able to connect with the spaces most personal to us, and it’s natural that many of us are now seeking to improve them.”

World Mental Health Day Recognises New Challenges

This year’s World Mental Health Day follows a year of life-changing adjustment for many of us, from spending more time at home to needing to find space for a home office and even home schooling. 

Given the desire among respondents to improve their homes, it’s not surprising that 70% said they thought the design of their home had affected their mental wellbeing during the pandemic. 

Spending more at home at home made 11% feel more stressed, anxious (10%) and depressed (10%), while 6% said it had negatively impacted their productivity. 

15% of respondents said adjusting their home designs to improve productivity was a priority improvement for, and making improvements now could have long-term benefits.  

(MORE: 30 brilliant home design ideas)

Jack has worked in journalism for 11 years and is the News Editor for Homebuilding & Renovating, a role he has had since 2019. He strives to break the most relevant and beneficial stories for self builders, extenders and renovators, including the latest news on the construction materials shortage and hydrogen heating. In 2021 he appeared on BBC's The World at One to discuss the government's planning reforms. 


He enjoys testing new tools and gadgets, and having bought his first home in 2013, he has renovated every room and recently finished a garden renovation.