What’s in a number? When it comes to credit scores, it turns out a whole lot! Here are 20 illuminating statistics about credit score that we updated with the most recent data for 2016:
1. The average FICO scores, the most commonly used model with a range from 300 to 850 points, is 699 as of July of 2016. That’s up from 696 in October 2015 and 695 in April 2015.
2. According to FICO, the number of people with credit scores of 800 or above – considered super-prime is now more than 20%, the highest rate since 2005. While it’s extremely uncommon, it is possible to earn a perfect credit score. In fact, FICO estimates that only about .5% (half of one percent) of all consumers with a credit score have a perfect 850 FICO.
3. Meanwhile, VantageScore, the model developed by Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax with the same range of 300 to 850, reports that their average U.S. score in 2016 was 673, up from 669 in 2015.
4. There are profound differences in credit score by age group, with baby boomers and the Silent Generation (68-85 years old) with average scores of 700 and up, while Gen Xers averaged a 655 score, millennials averaged a 634 score, and Gen Z had only a 631 Vantage Score.
5. However, according to a Federal Reserve study, the average credit score among homebuyers is 728 in 2016 – higher than the national average. In fact, only 6.8% of homebuyers in 2016 had scores below 62 according to the study.
6. On the other end of the spectrum, about 14% of the adult U.S. population has no credit score at all, called “credit invisible.”
7. According to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), as of 2016, 44% of adults had not checked their credit score within the previous 12 months.
8. That NFCC study reported that one in 10 people said they didn’t think they needed their credit score because they already had their credit report. In fact, an American Bankers Association survey found widespread confusion about the difference between credit reports and credit scores, with, 44% thinking incorrectly that the two were the same thing.
9. Even worse, a 2016 survey by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) and VantageScore reported that only 32% of Americans had received a copy of their free credit report, while 16% hadn’t even received one in the last three years.
10. College students are the most in the dark when it comes to their scores, as a 2016 study by Equifax showed that only 45% of college students even know their credit score.
11. The most common times for college students to check their credit scores are when applying for debt with a credit card company (41%) or bank (33%), while only 4% received a paid copy.
12. That same CFA study found that more than 50% of respondents had no idea that credit scores are used by non-creditors like electric utilities (53% knew) and home insurers, cell phone companies (68% knew) and landlords (68% knew).
13. But 90% of home insurers and auto insurers now use credit score in determining who to cover and what premiums to charge.
14. Not only is credit score a crucial factor when you want to apply for a new loan or a mortgage, but employers are screening their potential employees for credit score like never before. It’s estimated that 1 in 4 unemployed Americans have been subjected to a credit score check when they applied for a job, and 1 in 10 has been denied a job because of a bad score or something on their credit report!
15. Adding to the credit score confusion, 45% of respondents think that age is a factor in credit scoring, and 38% believe marital status plays into your credit score.
16. We may be confused about how credit works, but that doesn’t stop us from using it to judge many things in our lives – including dating? According to a 2016 Bankrate survey, almost 4 in 10 U.S. adults say that knowing a person’s credit score would influence the likelihood of dating them!
17. In fact, 43% of women and 32% of men said that a person’s credit would have an impact on if they dated them.
18. Credit scores also very widely based on the state where you live. In fact, the states with the lowest average credit scores are in the south and Southwest, including New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Nevada, and Florida. In those states, an astounding 40% of the population has subprime credit scores.
19. Meanwhile, the states with the highest average credit scores are found in the North and Midwest. Minnesota and North Dakota are two of the states with the highest credit scores, with 707 and 700 average FICOs, respectively.
20. While it’s easy to reason why credit scores may be lower on average in poorer states and higher in others, it’s harder to figure out the correlation between good or bad credit and other factors. For instance, there’s a direct correlation between scores and what email provider people use! Comcast email user (692 average) and Gmail, (682) have above average scores, but MSN (669), Aol (668) and Yahoo! (652) email users have below average scores.
If you have any questions about credit coring or your credit report, please contact us!Share