This episode contains strong language.

When Drew Mena and Amena Sengal decided last year to sell their home in New York and relocate their young family to Austin, Texas, they figured they’d have no problem.

What they hadn’t realized was that, across the country, home prices — and competition to secure properties — had risen to jaw-dropping levels.


  • Francesca Mari, a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and a fellow at the think tank New America.

Dan Winters for The New York Times

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Francesca Mari contributed reporting.

Special thanks to New America.

Includes music from the song, “Little Boxes.” Words and music by Malvina Reynolds. Copyright 1962 Schroder Music Co. (ASCAP). Renewed 1990. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

The Daily is made by Lisa Tobin, Rachel Quester, Lynsea Garrison, Clare Toeniskoetter, Paige Cowett, Michael Simon Johnson, Brad Fisher, Larissa Anderson, Chris Wood, Jessica Cheung, Stella Tan, Alexandra Leigh Young, Lisa Chow, Eric Krupke, Marc Georges, Luke Vander Ploeg, M.J. Davis Lin, Dan Powell, Dave Shaw, Sydney Harper, Robert Jimison, Mike Benoist, Liz O. Baylen, Asthaa Chaturvedi, Kaitlin Roberts, Rachelle Bonja, Diana Nguyen, Marion Lozano, Corey Schreppel, Anita Badejo, Rob Szypko, Elisheba Ittoop, Chelsea Daniel, Mooj Zadie, Patricia Willens, Rowan Niemisto, Jody Becker, Rikki Novetsky and John Ketchum.

Our theme music is by Jim Brunberg and Ben Landsverk of Wonderly. Special thanks to Sam Dolnick, Paula Szuchman, Cliff Levy, Lauren Jackson, Julia Simon, Mahima Chablani, Sofia Milan, Desiree Ibekwe, Wendy Dorr, Elizabeth Davis-Moorer, Jeffrey Miranda, Renan Borelli and Maddy Masiello.

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