An annual percentage rate (APR) and interest rate both represent the annual cost of borrowing as a percentage of the borrowed amount. Lenders use your interest rate to calculate monthly payments and disclose the APR. APR includes some fees in addition to interest resulting in a more comprehensive annualized cost of borrowing.
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An annual percentage rate (APR) is a broader measure of the cost to you of borrowing money, also expressed as a percentage rate. In general, the APR reflects not only the interest rate but also any points, mortgage broker fees, and other charges that you pay to get the loan.
So with APR vs. interest rate, your interest rate just shows the base cost of borrowing money and your APR shows the total cost of borrowing money. Therefore, your APR will typically be a quarter to even a half point higher than your interest rate will be. This is not to be confused with APY, which is your annual percentage yield.
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The APR takes those into account, so a mortgage with an interest rate of, say, 6% might actually cost you something like 6.15% a year. With credit cards, though, the APR is just interest.
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If your loan has an APR of 8.28% you might be paying a periodic rate of 8.28% applied to your balance once (at the end of one year) or it could mean a periodic rate of 0.69% applied to your loan balance monthly (8.28% divided by 12 months)-and that’s precisely why understanding APR vs. APY is important.
When you’re trying to find the best rates, understanding the difference between APR vs interest rates can get confusing. Here are four questions you may still be wondering about: Why is the APR Higher Than the Interest Rate? Because the APR is a more comprehensive view of what you’ll pay for that loan.
Although the simple interest rate vs. APR seem similar-not least because they’re both represented as percentages of the principal amount-there’s a fundamental difference between the two: Simple interest is the amount of interest you’ll pay the lender, minus additional fees. APR is the total annual cost of your loan.