In January 2010, the average credit score in the United States was 692, according to Experian's National Score Index.
Today, it’s between 700 and 710, according to John Ulzheimer, president of consumer education at SmartCredit.com, a credit-monitoring website. In an interview with CNBC.com, he said that reduction of credit-card debt is the main factor behind increased credit scores. “There’s no doubt,” he said.
If average credit scores are rising because consumers have begun to pay down their credit-card debts, then economic conditions must be improving to some degree. However, this average includes everybody, from the person who just became debt-free to the person who hasn’t made the minimum payment in months.
Just as these people are not all created equal, neither are the states that they call home. As a result, some states will have average credit scores that indicate a rebounding economy, while others will have average credit scores that indicate economic decline.
Mortgage Marvel, a mortgage-shopping website, crunched the numbers from over 330,000 mortgage applications received in 2011 and determined which states had the highest average credit scores.
The results don’t tell the whole story, but they paint a picture of how the states have fared economically, and residents of which states have done the best job of paying their bills.
Read ahead to see which states have the best credit scores.
By Daniel Bukszpan
Posted 29 March 2012