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From the Experts at

What is the Average Credit Score?

by Gerri Detweiler

What Is Average Credit Score

If you’re wondering what is the average credit score, what you’re probably really wondering is, “How does my credit score compare to others?” And maybe you’re even thinking, “Is it good enough to get approved for a loan or credit account?”

While the average credit score sounds like a simple enough figure to pin down, it’s a little more complicated than you may realize.

What’s My Score?

First things first. If you want to know how strong your credit is, you’ll need to know your credit score. You can find out by using’s free Credit Report Card. Not only will you get a truly free credit score, you’ll also find out how your credit score compares to state and national averages.

Which Score?

Another thing you’ll need to know when comparing your number to others is which credit score model is being used to calculate the score, and what credit score range is being used.

There are many different credit score models, including versions of VantageScore, FICO scores and even educational credit scores. Some of these have different credit score ranges, so while VantageScore 3.0 and FICO scores run from 300 – 850, there are others that run from 501-990 or 360 – 840, for example.

What’s A Good Score?

Again, different models have different ranges, and lenders make their own decisions about what they consider acceptable. But here’s an example using the ranges from’s credit card comparison tool:

Excellent (750+)
Good (700 – 749)
Fair (650 – 699)
Poor (600 – 649)
Bad (below 599)

Again, what’s considered a good or fair credit score will depend on how the lender views it, but you can get an idea of how lenders are likely to view your applications by checking your score and seeing how it compares to others.

Average Credit Score

Still hoping to find some numbers?

As of the 2nd quarter of 2013, the average VantageScore for consumers with an existing auto loan and lease was 761; for those with a bankcard it was 796 and for those with a mortgage it was 819. (This is using the classic version of the VantageScore which runs on a scale from 501-990. Data from Experian’s IntelliView tool.)

As of October 2012, the average FICO score is 689 according to

For up to date credit score averages – including how your score compares to others in your state and nationwide, use’s free Credit Report Card.

  • Liz

    Anonymous, you hit it right on the nail. My family and I are very loyal to our homeowner, who we’ve been renting a home from for almost 9 years (all payments made on time), and we now have to move. However, we’ve been having difficulty getting a loan due to our bad credit scores (though we all work very hard). Maybe one day we’ll own a house, though we can only hope.

    • Gerri Detweiler

      I know it can seem really daunting to build credit. Things are moving in the direction to include rent on credit reports. Eventually that will help renters like you who pay on time.

  • Gerri Detweiler

    It was actually 689 the last time that FICO released that number about a year and a half ago.

  • tim

    Credit score is just another way corporations can extract rent from consumers.

  • Gerri Detweiler

    Pippy – It’s very hard to tell. Have you ordered copies of your credit reports? It’s possible there is a mistake on them. Or their could be a collection account you aren’t aware of (such as a medical bill that went to collections). Here’s how to get your free annual credit reports. That’s where I suggest you start.

  • Gerri Detweiler

    It sounds like you are taking the right steps. As the information gets older is does have less impact. Have you obtained your free credit score from If so I’ll be happy to try to help you understand it.

  • Mike johnson

    i was “up there” with a 798 credit score ..not a single late payment from 18-33..after buying a home and having a car loan..i lost my job and was unable to find related work at a comparable compensation : story? bankruptcy a pay cut and a now 640 credit score …i used to have pride like you ..until fate dealt my a nice be careful how you gloat

  • B. Bissonette

    I disagree strongly. The FICO system isn’t biased. It is a good indicator of ones ability to pay back debt. It’s also possible to have a very poor credit rating and within 7 years have an excellent rating. As already mentioned paying your monthly payment on time and staying under 20% of open credit line will benefit huge. It’s takes several years to get an excellent credit score and about 90 days to have a poor score. People that have paid their debts on time and show a long history of this should get the best rates. They earned it. It wasn’t just given to them. While it is true that those with hits on their credit will pay a much higher interest rate they will also be required to put down a substantial down payment and have co-signer(s) willing to put up collateral. Their past history will typically follow suit. Lenders want people to pay their loans. They aren’t in the business to foreclose or recover assets from non paying borrowers. If the general public would smarten up and stop living paycheck to paycheck burdened with debt and get ahead of it then they would never have to worry about if they are approved. If they stopped missing payments and filing for bankruptcy protection the interest rates would drop down for everyone and borrowing would be much easier. It’s already been proven that having a lot of high risk loans has a huge detrimental impact when they aren’t paid back. Housing bubble = huge lending mistake. People were approved for mortgages that shouldn’t have been period. This caused a surge in real estate price then pop. Here we are now. All they did is just set back all the debtors who borrowed during that time and didn’t default on their loans. Instead they are upside down in their mortgage. What are they getting from the government? Not a thing. Instead their property value will barely cover the inflation rate for years to come.

  • B. Bissonette

    You should have cleared the debt before the marriage was dissolved. There’s nothing written that will physically force a person to do something. Having anything written into a divorce decree such as former spouse assuming all responsibility of paying the debt are not worth the paper they are written on as you now realize. You had a joint loan and it will always be a joint loan till the debt is payed and the line of credit closed married or not.

  • Credit Experts

    Have you looked at your score since you got the secured card? (Here’s how to monitor your credit score for free.) You’re not far from having a score that is considered “fair” (650-699) rather than poor, and that will give you more options for credit cards. And yes, a higher limit could help, because part of your credit score is related to how much of your available credit you are actually using. (Try to keep is below 30%; below 10% is even better.) But paying on time, which you are already doing, is the very best thing you can do for your credit. You’ll find other tips here:
    How to Build Credit the Smart Way

  • Credit Experts

    We’re not sure where you are getting the information that you need to carry a balance — and we disagree. It is a popular misconception though. We wrote about it here: Can Paying Off Debt Hurt My Credit?

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