The IKEA Life at Home Report

Home sweet home

What was life at home like in 2022? We spoke to more than 37,000 people and this is what they had to say.

Each year we pay visits to people in their homes around the world to find out what life at home is really like. What does home mean to us? What makes us happy? What makes us sad? The IKEA Life at Home Report invites everyone in to discover how we live around the world, and how we can make it better.

This year we travelled to 37 countries, including Germany, India, Japan, the UK and the USA, and spoke to more than 37,000 people about their lives at home.

A woman sits with her guinea pig on her lap.

A year of ups and downs

After the isolation of lockdown, we’re finally getting out and welcoming guests into our homes, and it feels good. Despite global concerns, such as the national economy (66%), rising household costs (61%) and the impact of climate change (56%), around 4 in 10 of us feel more positive about our home compared to the previous year, while only just over 1 in 10 feel more negative.

Make yourself comfortable

Almost all of us agree that home should be a place where we feel security, belonging and comfort, but this year two additional important qualities came up: enjoyment and achievement.

In countries like Japan, enjoyment is high on the list of priorities, but in general, globally, only about half of us really enjoy our homes. How can we change this and create a home that is all of the above and more? Well, by making it feel like… us. Home is where we can stay in to avoid going out, to talk to ourselves or even our plants, to sleep eat and work where we want to. For better or worse, home should feel unashamedly us.

A few home truths

We’re 1.5 times more likely to feel positive about a home that reflects our personality, regardless of our living or earning status. Yet only 6 in 10 of us do. Why? Take a look at some of the facts and figures.

While 66% of over 55s and 62% of women are most likely to agree that their home represents them, only 54% of men and an even lower 50% of young people agree.

Ownership also has an impact: 62% of homeowners feel their home reflects them, compared to 42% among those renting rooms.

Money matters: 63% of people on high incomes feel their home reflects them, versus 56% of those on lower incomes.

In Malaysia and the Philippines 69% of people feel their home reflects who they are, versus only 51% in the UK, 37% in Japan and 23% in Slovakia.

A place in our hearts and in our homes

Almost one-third of us say that it’s our possessions and the memories attached to them that are important contributors to creating a home that reflects our personality. But there’s a delicate balance to strike. Too many things can lead to clutter and untidiness, the main cause of frustration around the home.

Treasures or clutter? You decide. But interestingly, how we deal with our belongings differs around the globe. For example, in the USA, people prefer extra storage to keep things out of sight, as cluttered spaces can cause stress and anxiety. In India however, more is more and it's not uncommon to move to a larger home to accommodate the growing number of household possessions. But of course, there are easier ways to curtail clutter. Smart storage solutions and simple zoning tricks can work wonders, even in small spaces.

"Home provides me with protection. It is like a tree, shielding me from all the problems." Mehek

We just don't care... and that's good

However weird or wonderful, big or small our homes may be, what really matters is that it's ours. Only 8% of us care what other people think about how we live at home.

The most important takeaway is that regardless of how we live, where we live and who we live with, we all deserve the right to be ourselves behind our own front door.

Learn more

For more than 60 years IKEA has been visiting homes around the world, to gain insight into how we live and create smart, affordable solutions for everyday living. We want to share our findings with you - read the full 2022 Life at Home Report for our latest takeaways.