When looking through mortgage lender's websites, always bear in mind that the rates you see are not necessarily the rates you will get. Any change in the interest rate will affect APR too.
APR Pit Falls
You should also remember that APR is a useful tool for comparing costs across the whole length of the mortgage. If you move or pay it off before the end of the term, you might have to pay a second lot of fees and charges.
This makes APR a lot less relevant, and a lot less useful.
While it can be handy when shopping for deals, you should always take a closer look at the individual fees you're expected to pay. And consider when shopping how likely you are to stay in the home you're buying.
If it's a stepping stone to a larger property, and you're using it to build equity before moving on quite quickly, APR isn't going to be that useful.
It's only once you've taken into account these factors that you'll you know which deals are suitable for you.
When looking at the mortgage market for deals, remember that all the APRs you see are dependent on you actually being accepted for the deal. Sadly, there's no guarantee that you will be.
The deals on lenders' websites will show rates based on certain assumptions.
For example, the rates might be based on you borrowing $200,000, at a certain loan-to-value (LTV) ratio. That ratio is worked out as the amount of your loan set against the value of the house.
You might be offered a more expensive rate - and a higher APR - if you don't fulfill their LTV criteria, or if you don't have a great credit score.
Give yourself the best chance by arming yourself with as much knowledge as possible, and doing your best to build up a great credit score before applying.
Avoid applying for credit in the lead-up to your application - some lenders will see this as a red flag. And make sure you always pay off your credit cards and any personal loans on time.
Go see what you can find - now you've had APR explained to you and you have a great mortgage APR calculator, we hope the world of mortgages makes far more sense.