1As she hunted for a home this summer, first-time buyer Xinyu Li found herself feeling emotionally overwhelmed. She and her boyfriend had several offers rejected, and Xinyu compulsively checked online listings.

“It was a lot of stress and anxiety,” she says. “I had to go to therapy.”

Xinyu’s psychotherapist advised her on mindfulness strategies and suggested looking at online listings just once a day.

After Xinyu closed on a New York City condo and no longer devoted endless hours to her home search, she felt better and stopped seeing her therapist.

Shopping for a home is a stressful experience even in normal times. Partly it’s the sheer size of the transaction — a house is the largest single purchase most people make.

Then there are the emotional considerations about lifestyle issues such as commute times, school quality and neighborhood crime rates.

Raising the stakes for homebuyers’ mental health, the housing market of 2021 is anything but normal.