Quick, look around your house: If you had to ballpark a number, how much would it cost you to turn this place into a space you’re proud of? How much would you be willing to spend? For many people, that figure is somewhere around, oh, $40,435. Yup. Slightly more than a new set of throw pillows and a fresh coat of paint in the kitchen.
At least that’s according to a 1,100-person survey conducted by personal finance site MoneyWise, uncovering that $40,000 figure as the average most people spent to achieve their dream home aesthetic. And at the root of a lot of these upgrades was: embarrassment—and a desire to keep up with the Joneses, Kardashians and whoever else appears in your Instagram feed.
One in four people felt their homes weren’t as nice as their friends, and a whopping 83 percent said social media influenced their idea of what a dream home should look like. So, what triggers this sense of shame? It seems there are three major factors at play—here’s what they are and how to deal with them, in case you find yourself in a “my house is a dump!” spiral.