I Used a Professional Hypnotist to Help Me with Homebuying Stress

published Jul 18, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Left: New Orleans, USA Old street historic district in Louisiana famous town, city, purple painted house wall colorful entrance, building nobody

Right:  Vintage pocket watch with chain swinging over surface on dark background among faded clock faces, magic motion effect
Credit: Left to right: Kristi Blokhin/Shutterstock; New Africa/Shutterstock

My heart was racing and my head felt woozy. My stomach was in knots, and I feared I was about to vomit. 

The thing is, I wasn’t speaking before a massive crowd or climbing aboard a roller coaster — I was simply handing over my condo’s down payment check. 

Generally, I like to think that I’m a master of my anxiety. Controlled by it in my younger days, I’ve spent the last 15 years rewiring my brain to use that adrenaline to my benefit. But as I navigate the final months of the homebuying process, the fear that it will all fall through occasionally wraps around my chest with a strong grip. 

Clearly, I’m not alone: According to a new LendingTree survey, 65 percent of recent homebuyers say they lost sleep during the homebuying process. So when I was offered a hypnosis track specifically for the homebuying and selling process, I figured it was worth a shot. 

Helmed by hypnotherapist Rebecca Lockwood, the 10-minute track, which was released by GetAgent, isn’t the type of hypnosis you see in sitcoms, where the lead character finds themselves barking like a dog every time someone claps. 

“Your unconscious mind can try anything it wishes, but your conscious mind isn’t going to do anything of importance,” Lockwood says in a soothing tone, one that sounds like spreading butter on freshly baked bread. Following her advice, I sat back in my chair and took long, deep breaths, holding them in for several seconds before exhaling. “Let your comfort take you deeper and deeper inside,” Lockwood says, as I imagined each exhalation sending me to greater depths below my desk chair. 

I began pursuing homeownership in April of 2021 when an accountant pointed out I owed a great deal in taxes because I’m unmarried, self-employed, and don’t own property. Since then, I’ve put in several offers, only to lose out to all-cash offers, investors, or higher bids. It’s a familiar story, particularly in the Boston real estate market, where a housing shortage leaves aspiring homebuyers hungry for anything livable. 

When I got tipped off about the property I’m in the process of purchasing, naturally I jumped at it. The first few months were smooth sailing, and I cruised through the appraisal, inspection, and offer acceptance. However, the back end proved to be nerve-wracking. Right now, I’m unsure if I’ll actually close on the condo by the closing date. At the same time, my landlord needed to know if I wanted to re-sign my lease. Since I didn’t want to get stuck in another year-long lease with him (he refused to go month-to-month!) I had to confirm I’d leave my apartment of eight years. When the seller proposed pushing back the closing date, I started to worry about having nowhere to live. 

“You trust everything will turn out just the way it should,” the recording tells me. “You are satisfied that you will get the outcomes you want. You are excited about the possibility of new beginnings and fresh changes. You remain positive about the outcome.” 

And I am excited about the possibility of all these things. It wasn’t until 1974 that women could legally get a mortgage without a cosigner, after all. Since then, things have changed dramatically: As of 2023, single women made up 17 percent of all homebuyers, in contrast to single men at 9 percent, Bankrate reports. And amid my millennial peers — a generation swamped by student loan debt — the fact that I’m able to pursue homeownership is a tremendous privilege.

The hypnosis concludes by telling me to “open your eyes relaxed and energized and amazing.” While I haven’t descended into a state of nirvana, I do know it’s just another example of one of the most challenging yet valuable lessons in my life: There are certain things we just can’t control, and there’s no better example than real estate.