What should you know when comparing today's mortgage rates? One thing to understand is the difference between an interest rate and an annual percentage rate (APR). The mortgage interest rate is the interest rate stated on the Glossary Term: promissory note
which determines your monthly payment amount (Glossary Term: principal and interest
). An annual percentage rate (or APR) is a measure of the total cost of credit to the borrower over the life of the loan, expressed as a yearly rate. It includes Glossary Term: closing or settlement fees
charged to the borrower in connection with the services provided by the closing agents. Lender's fees, mortgage insurance and other closing costs (“loan fees”) are calculated into the loan amount and then spread out over the length of the loan (or the Glossary Term: term
) to reach the APR. By making estimated loan fees part of the equation, homebuyers can use APR to better see the true cost of a loan and make a better comparison between mortgage products offered by each lender.
Our mortgage rate tool will give you results for different loan types and allow you to compare mortgage interest rates, APR, Glossary Term: points and monthly payments based on the information you entered.
Reminders about mortgage rates:
- Mortgage rates can change from day to day, or may even change during the course of a day, depending on economic conditions
- The amount you put down (the Glossary Term: down payment) can affect the interest rate you may be offered. Find out about the down payment by reading How much should you put down?
- Be sure to read the loan assumptions for any advertised mortgage rate. Know the type and term of the loan that may be offered, points, Glossary Term: credit rating and more.