The annual percentage rate (APR) is the amount of interest on your total mortgage loan amount that you'll pay annually (averaged over the full term of the loan). A lower APR could translate to lower monthly mortgage payments. (You'll see APRs alongside interest rates in today's mortgage rates.)

What APR should I get for a mortgage?

In many cases, it’s best to choose a mortgage loan with the lowest APR. However, sometimes a loan offer with a lower APR may require you to pay mortgage points or other fees. You may prefer to use that money toward a down payment or to buy appliances and furniture for your new home. If so, you might consider a loan with a slightly higher APR that doesn't have mortgage points or other fees. Contact a U.S. Bank mortgage loan officer for help determining the best mortgage loan for your specific needs.

What other factors should I consider when looking for a mortgage?

While the APR makes it easier to compare mortgage offers, there are many factors to consider when getting a mortgage loan. These include the size of your down payment, closing costs and money you'll need to set aside to furnish and maintain your home. The mortgage rate and payment calculator is a good place to start.

What is the difference between the mortgage interest rate and APR?

When looking at APR vs. interest rate, at its simplest, the interest rate reflects the current cost of borrowing expressed as a percentage rate. The interest rate does not reflect fees or any other charges you may need to pay for the loan. The APR, also expressed as a percentage rate, provides a more complete picture by taking the interest rate as a starting point and accounting for lender fees and other charges required to finance the mortgage loan.

How to compare mortgage interest rates and APRs

When looking at APR vs. interest rate, at its simplest, the interest rate reflects the current cost of borrowing expressed as a percentage rate. The interest rate does not reflect fees or any other charges you may need to pay for the loan. The APR, also expressed as a percentage rate, provides a more complete picture by taking the interest rate as a starting point and accounting for lender fees and other charges required to finance the mortgage loan.