Americans would rather pay a mortgage than rent

Americans prefer paying a home mortgage over renting -- and many even believe homeownership has made them a better person, according to a new report.

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Bank of America recently published its Fall Homebuyer Insight Report and found that 93 percent of homeowners are happier with a home than when they were renting, with only 17 percent saying they could go back to renting after they owned a home.

“Most credit their happiness to an emotional attachment to their home, as well as the improved lifestyle and variety of hobbies that come with owning,” D. Steve Boland, Bank of America’s head of consumer lending, said in the introduction of the report.

“This is the first time we’ve asked homeowners how much owning a home means to them, and a majority said that buying a home is the best decision they’ve ever made,” Boland added.

Bank of America also found that 79 percent of respondents believe owning a home has made them a better person.

Many respondents said they took up new hobbies after they bought a home including gardening and landscaping, cooking, grilling and baking and interior design and remodeling.

About 67 percent said their relationships have changed as well, from giving their families a sense of pride and allowing them to host more guests.

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Homeowners also reported feeling more satisfied with various aspects of their lives, including the quality of their social life, their financial well-being and how much time they spend on their hobbies.

In fact, 58 percent of homeowners said that their home is a place to make memories more than it is a financial investment, with 70 percent even saying they are more emotionally attached to their home than they expected they would be.

“We’re delighted to hear the immense satisfaction homeownership brings to Americans,” Boland said.