August 7, 2020

The average credit score by age, state, and year

[Business Insider, Getty Images]

  • The average American has a FICO credit score of 703, according to data from Experian — that’s considered ‘good’ by FICO’s ratings.
  • Credit scores are numerical ratings of your borrowing and repayment history, commonly used by banks to determine eligibility for loans and interest rates. 
  • People over 50 have average credit scores higher than the national average. Scores in some states, including Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota, tend to exceed the US average, too. 
  • Get your free credit score with CreditKarma

The average credit score during the second quarter of 2019 in the US was 703, according to credit reporting company Experian. 

Increasing your credit score is a marathon, not a sprint. TORWAISTUDIO / Getty Images

Credit scores, which are like a grade for your borrowing history, fall in a range of 300 to 850. The higher your score, the better — people with higher credit scores tend to get better interest rates on loans, have access to credit cards with better perks and lower interest rates, and could even pay less for insurance.

The FICO model of credit scoring puts credit scores into five categories: 

  • Poor: 300-579
  • Fair: 580-669
  • Good: 670-739
  • Very good: 740-799
  • Excellent: 800-850
Your FICO score may be slightly different at each credit bureau. WAYHOME studio/Shutterstock

Based on this scoring system, the average American has a good credit score. But, the average credit score is different by demographic.

Average credit score by age

The average credit score looks very different between age groups. As credit scores are calculated on credit and borrowing history, older people have higher credit scores on average due to a more extensive borrowing history. Here’s how it breaks down by age group, according to data from Experian:

Age groupAverage credit score in 2019 (FICO)

Average credit score by year

Americans actually have better credit than ever. The average FICO score has increased about 10 points the past seven years. Here’s how it’s risen, according to Experian data:

YearAverage credit score (FICO)

Americans have more credit card debt than ever before, with a total of 930 billion in the fourth quarter of 2019. But at the same time, credit scores are rising. The period spanning from June 2009 until early 2020  became America’s longest-running period of economic expansion, and brought low unemployment rates. This could have contributed to America’s rising credit scores, with more people borrowing money and paying bills on time. 

By Liz Knueven

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