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I felt an overwhelming wave of relief when we got the call from our real estate agent telling us our offer was accepted.

Like many couples during the COVID-19 pandemic, my husband and I realized we needed more space and thus began the house-hunting process. But we didn’t just need more space to accommodate work-from-home setups or to combat the stir-crazy feelings that sheltering in place brought on. Our decision to find a bigger home, in all honesty, felt like life or death. And because the pandemic brought on such an enormous housing boom — especially where I live in Charleston, South Carolina — I thought it was a real possibility I’d have to settle for a poor quality of life.