Understanding Interest

When you take out a loan, you want a low interest rate. When you are putting money into a deposit account, such as a checking, savings, or investment, you want a high interest rate. You'll need to do your homework in order to find the best solution for you. Understanding how interest works will help you make smart financial decisions.

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Interest on Loans

If you take out a loan or use a credit card, you are paying interest on your purchases. This means an institution is charging you a fee to borrow money, which makes your purchases cost more than you might think. Let's say you find a tremendous deal on a high-end home entertainment system for $500. If you purchase that system with your credit card and cannot pay off the balance immediately, you will be charged a fee on top of the $500 based on your card's interest rate. A 12% interest rate on your card, for example, means you're paying an extra $60. That might not seem like a significant amount, but consider how many purchases you put on your credit card every month and your interest payments can add up quickly. 

In the same respect, the interest rate on a mortgage or auto loan is extremely important in determining how much money you will end up spending on your house or vehicle at the end of the loan's term. Many people put extra money toward their high-dollar loans because they know they will pay off the loan sooner and, thus, pay less money toward interest.

Interest on Savings

You may benefit from higher interest rates for money you place in savings and investments. When you open one of United Community Bank's accounts that earn interest, such as interest-bearing checkingCDs, IRAs, Money Market or Savings, you will be paid interest based on the current rates.

The earlier you start saving, the better your results will be over the long term. Choosing the savings option that offers the highest interest rate will help you grow your money faster and provide greater peace of mind.