29 Credit Score Statistics for 2020

looking over finances

Experian said in a recent article that a good credit score can potentially help you save money on your mortgage, car insurance, credit cards and many other things. Alternatively, a bad credit score could cost you the same amount in expenses.

Many of life’s biggest purchases (like a house, a car or a college tuition) are things most people can only buy on credit. For most of the population, it’s unlikely you’ll ever have enough disposable cash sitting around to pay for these large expenses up front. For this reason, credit scores are of the utmost importance in determining your eligibility and trustworthiness for making these purchases and paying back your loans on time.

How much damage can a bad credit score really cause? A survey from a loan comparison site suggests as an example that individuals who take out an auto loan of $25,346 with a “fair” credit score could pay up to $3,847 more interest than a person with a “very good” credit score taking out the same loan.

Similarly, someone with a “fair” credit score may pay a total interest amount of $8,640 for tuition at a university, but another student with a “very good” score might pay as much as $4,707 less for the same tuition to the same school.

how your credit score affects loan financing

We’ve compiled a list of the most important statistics you should know about credit scores. This information could help you make critical decisions regarding your score and may help you improve your credit score.

General credit score statistics

  1. More than 50 million adults had no credit score at all in 2015 [Source: Consumer Finance]
  2. Roughly 26 million Americans are credit invisible, meaning they have no credit history with a nationwide consumer reporting agency [Source: Consumer Finance]
  3. 19 million Americans have credit history that has gone stale or is insufficient to produce a score under the most common scoring models [Source: Consumer Finance]
  4. 18% of adults ages 18 to 24 say they never check their credit scores [Source: Credit Card Insider]
  5. 21% of adults say they check their credit score monthly. [Source: Credit Card Insider]
  6. 54% of Americans say they never check their credit scores [Source: Financial Maintenance]
  7. Credit scores weren’t invented until 1950 when Bill Fair and Earl Isaac founded FICO [Source: The Street]
  8. Your credit score may predict how long you’ll be married – the Federal Reserve conducted a study that concluded that the closer the match of two partners’ credit scores at the beginning of the relationship, the more likely they are to stay together [Source: Federal Reserve]
  9. It’s possible to get a mortgage with a credit score of zero through a process called manual underwriting [Source: The Balance]
  10. Education level, bank account balance, stock portfolio, employment status, and salary are all not factored into your credit score [Source: MyFICO]
  11. More than half a million Credit Karma members achieved an average first score of 639 after not having an initial TransUnion score when they checked their credit scores for the first time [Source: Credit Karma]
  12. If you check your credit for the first time and don’t see an initial score, it may take an average of five months before you see a score [Source: Nerd Wallet]
  13. Closed credit card accounts can continue to appear on your credit report, affecting your scores for up to ten years [Source: Points Guy]
  14. Hard inquiries into your credit report, like those done by creditors, can remain on your report for up to two years [Source: Investopedia]

FICO statistics

  1. The average FICO score hit 706 for the first time in September 2019 [Source: FICO]
  2. Less than 1% of the U.S. population has a perfect FICO score of 850 [Source: CreditDonkey]
  3. A credit score of anything above 810 is considered “perfect,” because improving your score further is unlikely to be significantly beneficial [Source: WalletHub]
  4. 12% of the U.S. population has a FICO score below 550 [Source: CreditDonkey]
  5. There’s a 3.5% year-over-year decrease in the recent serious delinquency rate between 2016 and 2017 [Source: FICO]

VantageScore statistics

  1. The average VantageScore credit score in 2018 was a 670 [Source: Experian]
  2. Adults ages 22 to 35 have an average VantageScore credit score of 634 [Source: CreditDonkey]
  3. Adults age 70 and older have an average VantageScore credit score of 730 [Source: CreditDonkey]
  4. Approximately 10.5 billion VantageScore credit scores were used between July 2017 and July 2018.  [Source: VantageScore]
  5. Average VantageScore credit score for each of the ten most populous states in 2017 [Source: Census Bureau]
    • California: 680
    • Texas: 656
    • Florida: 668
    • New York: 688
    • Pennsylvania: 687
    • Illinois: 683
    • Ohio: 678
    • Georgia: 654
    • North Carolina: 666
    • Michigan: 677
  6. 0.1% of individuals with VantageScore credit scores of 800 or above have tax liens and civil judgements on their credit reports [Source: VantageScore]
  7. People with a credit score of 800 or above have credit card limits totaling $46,700 on average, of which they generally use less than 5% [Source:VantageScore]

the average credit score is increasing over time

Average credit score statistics

  1. Average credit score per age group, as of April 2017 [Source: Experian]
    • 20–29 years old: 662
    • 30–39 years old: 673
    • 40–49 years old: 684
    • 50–59 years old: 706
    • 60+ years old: 749
  2. Average credit score per income bracket [Source: ValuePenguin]
    • Low Income: 664
    • Moderate Income: 716
    • Middle Income: 753
    • Upper Income: 775
  3. Average credit score over the past few years [Source: Experian]
    • 2019: 703
    • 2018: 701
    • 2017: 699
    • 2016: 699
    • 2015: 695
    • 2014: 693
    • 2013: 691
    • 2012: 612

Credit scores aren’t as complicated as they may seem. Maintaining a strong credit score is crucial to financial stability and can help you get approved for loans and credit cards. Not sure how to look at or take care of your credit score? There are many great resources available to help you view and build credit, including credit repair sites and other financial assistance.