I've written a lot about credit scores in the past, but beyond the words there are numbers in the form of raw data and there is no better way to visualize this data than by seeing it in chart & table form.
Want to know the average credit score for a 21 year old, or a 34 year old? How about the average FICO score for someone in their 40's, 50's or 60's? It's all right here!
I've created 2 simple ways to digest this credit data.
An Interactive Chart
You can use the interactive bar chart to find your age (past, present or future) and determine where you are on the average, where you've been and where you might be years from now. You can hover over each line to see the exact age and average credit score for each year 18 - 80.
On mobile devices you can drag your finger across the chart to get more detailed information for each bar.
On desktop devices you move your cursor over the bars to see more detailed information.
A Complete Year-by-Year Table
Don't want pretty bar charts? I got you! Scroll down and see a year-by-year table. When you hover over the fields you'll see the field turns light gray which allows you to more easily see you have the correct age & score.
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Average Credit Score by Age (Bar Chart)
Average Credit Score by Age (Year-by-Year)
Data By Experian
|Age||Average Credit Score|
Let's Talk About Credit Building In Life Stages.
This is a time of fun for most. Get out, do the things you want to do and live. You suffer a bit, borrow money from the parents, live with roommates, some of you graduated from a good college and work 9-5 and some of you have a side hustle, but at the end of the day you really don't have a lot of extra money after paying for for necessities.
What you do have is opportunity. You have the ability to start growing your future wealth and to take care of your credit.
It's at this stage where future financial impact is the highest. Thanks to that compounding interest thing us older people love so much. Starting early is an advantage only time can provide.
In terms of credit scores, you're young.
Even if your parents started you out with a credit card in their name, or you have a student loan that reports to the 3 credit bureaus - it's still very early. A good credit score (670+) without an Average Age of Accounts (AoA) above 5 years and very low DTI (< 30%) combined with low credit utilization can detrimental at this stage.
You're a risk. A decent risk, but not a great one in the eyes of a lender. They want history. They want to see you have credit and use it responsibly. They want to know you aren't stretched thin and tapped out.
If you're in your 20's, NOW is when you want to start paying attention to that score and how the various factors relate. Start looking at ways you can improve it over time, and while this might seem crazy, I want you to read an article I wrote 700 Credit Score After Bankruptcy.
Now, why on Earth would I recommend an article about rising from the absolute pit of despair in Chapter 7 bankruptcy to a 700 credit score to people in their 20's?
Put simply, it's because the strategy works when everything is stacked against you. Why wouldn't you put it in play if you've got everything going for you?!
That's your reality. You're starting from scratch, but you have an edge few have - youth.
Imagine what you can do, the powerful score you can create if you follow simple tips like proper budgeting, credit utilization, paying your bills on time and living within your means.
And that doesn't even factor in investing, 401k's and asset accumulation!
If you're in your 30's and you didn't latch on to the rules of building and maintaining credit in your 20's, it's OK. You're going to be alright, but you have to have discipline and get your financial house in order.
If you're 30-something and already have a 700+ credit score and a retirement account you're contributing to every year, fantastic, that's amazing. Keep it up.
If you don't, start with the articles mentioned above and ingrain proper budgeting and credit care in your mind. It's NOT too late.
From a retirement standpoint, your 30's should be the period where you're in the middle stages of salary growth. This means that you should be making a substantially larger amount per year than you did in your early-to-mid 20's.
If that's the case, and you aren't putting money away in a 401k, IRA or other financial tool; now is the time to start.
That means proper budgeting, credit management and investing. Don't let "life creep" get in the way, it's saving time!
Focus on improvement every day. Allocate a portion of your after-tax pay to an investment, or employer-match 401k and keep trucking. It WILL pay off.
At this point (I'm at this age, btw) you have to start getting real about your credit if you didn't in your 20's and 30's. Starting over, or from the beginning is tough. If you're at the national average you've got a 750+ credit score, a mortgage and a pretty solid nest egg.
If you don't, for whatever reason, it's still not time to panic. You're in your prime earning years and you've still got a game plan for credit and financial growth thanks to the articles above.
In fact, no matter your age, the opportunity to go from 500-to-800 is still there, in short time no less, you just have to be disciplined and follow a plan. Your finances, however, are a little more difficult to catch up. If you've neglected 20 years of saving and investing, there's no way to sugarcoat it - you've lost the advantage of time and decades of compounding interest.
You'll have to fight even harder.
If this sounds like you, now is the time to find that structure and discipline and get back on track.
While I'm going to leave out the 60's and beyond in terms of rebuilding credit, the reality is that you can rebuild, or increase your credit score at any age. Why I'm not including those decades is because 50+ is later stage in terms of both finance and life, and the core strategies all apply the same.
Budgeting, Investing & credit building. It's always the answer. The only thing that changes is the timeline you have left in terms of growing your wealth and your credit age.
If you have poor credit, or what people wouldn't consider "a good credit score" (620 or below), then you need to start taking it seriously. America runs on credit, and if you need to start over or improve, the articles above can not only dramatically improve your score in short order, but budgeting will reign in the outflow, ultimately yielding a much more positive financial future.
Here's the deal. At 50, 60 or even 70 - you have a future. You need to spend your "now" focused on creating that reputable credit history and your retirement account.
I know you can do it.
- Experian: At What Age Can You Expect Your Best FICO® Score?
- Experian: What Is the Average Credit Score in the U.S.?
- Federal Trade Commission: Your Equal Credit Opportunity Rights
- Statista: Average credit scores in the United States in 2019, by age