President Barack Obama says the American people have "picked ourselves up" and fought back during tough economic times, declaring after winning re-election that the "best is yet to come."
Obama says he wants to meet with Republican rival Mitt Romney to discuss how they can work together. He says they may have "battled fiercely, but it's only because we love this country deeply."
The president rolled to a second term over Romney, winning more than 300 electoral votes.
Obama was welcomed by thunderous applause as he arrived on stage in his hometown, joined by first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia.
Republican Mitt Romney conceded defeat in the presidential contest early Wednesday, saying the nation had chosen Barack Obama to remain president for another term and that it was time for the nation to unite behind him.
"This is a time of great challenges for America, and I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation," Romney said.
Romney spoke to cheering supporters in a hotel ballroom in Boston. The former Massachusetts governor said he was proud of the campaign he had run but that voters had made another choice.
Romney thanked his running mate Paul Ryan, saying that besides his wife, Ann, the Wisconsin congressman was "the best choice I've ever made." Romney predicted Ryan would have a bright future serving the nation.
Romney struck a note of bipartisanship after the bitterly fought contest, saying elected officials must find common ground.
"We can't risk partisan bickering and political posturing. Our leaders have to work across the aisle to do the people's work," Romney said.