The Homebuyer Insights Report finds most Americans prefer a mortgage payment to rent. Most homeowners credit their happiness to an improved lifestyle and the variety of hobbies that come with owning.

The latest report also found that homeowners believe homeownership builds emotional and financial equity, but emotional value seems to hold more weight. In fact, more than half of current homeowners define a home as a place to make memories.

Ninety-three percent of Americans say they are happier after buying a home, and 83% would never go back to renting, according to Bank of America’s latest Homebuyer Insights Report, based on a survey of nearly 2,000 consumers. Most owners say they have an emotional attachment to their home, and ownership also has improved their lifestyle and variety of hobbies.

“We know how much ownership means, and we see examples every day of how owning a home gives our clients the power to build personal wealth and make memories,” says D. Steve Boland, head of consumer lending at Bank of America. “They’ve told us very clearly that homeownership is invaluable, and that’s why we’re actively providing assistance with down payment and closing costs to help people buy homes and create a new lifestyle.”

Eighty-eight percent of survey respondents say that buying a home is the best decision they’ve ever made. Seventy-nine percent say that owning a home has changed them for the better. Three out of four homeowners surveyed say they pursued new hobbies after buying a home, including:

  • Landscaping/gardening: 47%

  • Cooking/baking/grilling: 45%

  • Interior design/remodeling: 33%

Further, two-thirds of respondents say their relationships with family and loved ones has changed for the better since purchasing a home. They credited homeownership as improving their relationships in the following ways:

  • Given families a sense of pride: 47%

  • Allowed homeowners to entertain more: 49%

  • Enabled homeowners to bring the entire family under one roof: 24%