A-to-I RNA editing is the conversion of adenosine to inosine in double-stranded cellular and viral RNAs. Recently, abundant editing of human transcripts affecting thousands of genes has been reported. Most editing sites are confined to the primate-specific Alu repeats. Notably, the editing level in mouse was shown to be much lower. In order to find the reason for this dramatic difference, here we identify editing sites within mouse repeats and analyze the sequence properties required for RNA editing. Our results show that the overall rate of RNA editing is determined by specific properties of different repeat families such as abundance, length, and divergence. We show that the striking difference in editing levels between human and mouse is mostly due to the higher divergence of the different mouse repeats.