Cities With Best and Worst Credit Scores

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Credit scores vary from city to city. These cities had the best and worst credit scores in 2021.

Your credit score is a three digit number that reveals how responsible of a borrower you are. If you decide to refinance your house or car, lenders will consider it. The higher your score is, the easier it will be to lock in a refinancing offer with a low rate and favorable terms.

According to our State of Auto Refinance: 2022 Report, 670 was the average credit score of auto refinance borrowers last year. The report also allowed us to see the cities with the best and worst credit scores in the nation, proving just how much scores can vary in different places.

Let’s dive deeper into how credit scores are calculated and what you can do to improve your credit if it’s not where you’d like it to be.

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Credit and Its Impact on Auto Refinancing 

By refinancing your vehicle, you could reap a variety of benefits. You might secure a lower interest rate and lower your monthly payment. Or you even switch to a lender with better rates or terms.

No matter what your reason for an auto refinance is, a steady income and good credit score can help you qualify for the best offers. Fortunately, if you don’t have good or excellent credit, there’s still a good chance you can refinance your car and save money in the process.

Unsure of what your credit score means? Here’s a brief overview of each credit score range and how lenders view it.

  • Exceptional: 800-850
  • Very good: 740-799
  • Good: 670-739
  • Fair: 580-669
  • Very poor: 300-579

How Credit Scores Are Calculated 

Most lenders, including those who offer auto refinancing consider FICO scores, which are made up of five factors including:

Payment history

Your payment history accounts for 35% of your FICO score. It shows whether or not you make on-time payments on bills like your credit cards, mortgage, and car loans. Consistent, timely payments can keep your score high.

Credit utilization

Credit utilization is how much of your available credit you actually use and makes up 30% of your FICO score. To calculate it, add up all your balances, divide them by your total credit limits, and multiply by 100. Ideally, keep your credit utilization to less than 30%.

Length of credit history

The length of time each of your accounts have been open is 15% of your FICO score. If you’ve had your accounts for a while and made timely payments on them, your credit score will benefit.

New credit

New credit makes up 10% of your FICO score. If you open up too many credit accounts at once, your credit score might go down. That’s why, it’s wise to only apply for new credit when it’s absolutely necessary and you know your chances of approval are high.

Credit mix

The last 10% of your FICO score is your credit mix or the various types of accounts you have open. If you have a diverse mix of credit cards, mortgages, car loans, and student loans, for example, it will help your credit score.

Now to our list of cities with the best and worst credit scores in the country.

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Cities With the Highest Average Credit Scores

These cities have the highest average credit scores.

Prairie Creek Waterfall in Plano texas

10. Plano, Texas

  • Average Credit Score: 693
  • Fun Fact: Plano is home to two exciting events: the Plano Balloon Festival, a showcase of hot air balloons, and the Plano International Festival which celebrates more than 100 countries.

Colorful houses referred to as The Painted Ladies of San Francisco

8. San Francisco, California (tied)

  • Average Credit Score: 694
  • Fun Fact: The city was originally called Yerba Buena, which means “good herb” in Spanish before it was renamed San Francisco in 1876.

Arrowhead Gold Club in Littleton, CO

8. Littleton, Colorado (tied)

Palm trees on a clean beach in Hollywood, CA

7. Hollywood, Florida

  • Average Credit Score: 695
  • Fun Fact: This downtown features more than 30 colorful murals created by artists from South Florida and beyond, known as the Downtown Hollywood Mural Project.

York County Courthouse in York, PA

6. York, Pennsylvania 

Ocean Pier in Lake Worth, FL

5.  Lake Worth, Florida

  • Average Credit Score: 698
  • Fun Fact: Lake Worth is home to more than 1,000 pastel-painted historic cottages, the largest collection in Florida.

Denve, Colorado skyline with mountains in the distance | Cities With the Best and Worst Interest Rates

4.  Denver, Colorado

  • Average Credit Score: 699
  • Fun Fact: There are about 300 days of sunshine a year in Denver, making it one of the sunniest cities in the U.S.

View of downtown from the Third Avenue Bridge, Minneapolis, MN

3. Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Average Credit Score: 711
  • Fun Fact: Pop-up toasters, Bundt pans, and Aveda beauty products were invented in Minneapolis.

aerial view of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

2. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

  • Average Credit Score: 714
  • Fun Fact: You can thank this city for burgers and ketchup since the Big Mac and Heinz Ketchup were born in Pittsburgh.

Colorful Autumn leaves in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania | Cities With the Best and Worst Interest Rates

1.  Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 

  • Average Credit Score: 719
  • Fun Fact: In 1857, Bethlehem emerged as a manufacturing city for steel and continued to play a part in America’s industrial development.
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Cities With the Lowest Average Credit Scores

Here are the cities with the lowest average credit scores.

Aerial view of downtown Birmingham, Alabama

10. Birmingham, Alabama

Spanish moss lining a path to a fountain in Savannah, Georgia

9. Savannah, Georgia 

  • Average Credit Score: 652
  • Fun Fact: Not only is Savannah the oldest city in Georgia, it was also the first planned city in the U.S. with 22 0f the 24 original city squares still in existence.

Downtown Fayetteville, NC

8.  Fayetteville, North Carolina

  • Average Credit Score: 651
  • Fun Fact: Fayetteville is known for Fort Bragg, which is the highest populated army base in the U.S. with 545,926 active duty soldiers.

Downtown Knoxville, Tennessee bars and restaurants

6. Knoxville, Tennessee (tied)

  • Average Credit Score: 650
  • Fun Fact: In an area known as The Great Lakes of the South, Knoxville is surrounded by seven lakes: Cherokee, Douglas, Ft. Loudon, Melton Hill, Norris, Watts Bar and Tellico.

Middle Bay lighthouse on the beach in Mobile, Alabama

6. Mobile, Alabama (tied)

  • Average Credit Score: 650
  • Fun Fact: In 1703, Mobile, not New Orleans, hosted the first Mardi Gras celebration.
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Look out over water at Columbia, South Carolina high rise buildings

5.  Columbia, South Carolina

  • Average Credit Score: 649
  • Fun Fact: Columbia is home to a puppet theater, The Columbia Marionette Theater, one of only a few spaces in the country dedicated to the art.

Beachfront with Corpus Christi in the background

3. Corpus Christi, Texas (tied)

  • Average Credit Score: 648
  • Fun Fact: Its high wind speed makes Corpus Christi one of the best cities in North America for activities like sailing, kite flying, windsurfing, and kiteboarding.

Aerial view of downtown Detroit, MI with a barge in the foreground

3. Detroit, Michigan (tied)

Looking at the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., from street view

2. Washington, D.C.

View of Stillhouse Hollow Lake in Killeen, Texas | Cities With the Best and Worst Interest Rates

1. Killeen, Texas

  • Average Credit Score: 642
  • Fun Fact: Due to its high influx of soldiers and fast growth after 1942, Killeen has a reputation as a military “boom town.”

You Can Refinance Your Car, No Matter Your Credit 

In 2021, auto refinancing saved customers an average of $1,158 per year — a 16% increase compared to 2020 and the highest amount since RateGenius began compiling its annual report in 2013. This data goes to show an auto refinance has the potential to make your car loan more affordable.

Whether your credit is in the “fair” or “poor” range, don’t worry. You might still be eligible for refinancing offers. To increase the likelihood of the best rates and terms, however, you may want to improve your credit before you apply. When you’re ready to refinance, shop around to find a great deal.

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About The Author

Anna Baluch

Anna has written for Credit Karma, LendingTree, Experian, Freedom Debt Relief, among many other publications. She is passionate about helping people from all walks of life make good financial decisions. Anna lives in a suburb of sunny Cleveland, OH and enjoys working out, trying new restaurants, and volunteering.

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