Have you ever wondered how your mortgage balance or credit score compares to those of your peers? Well, now you don't have to. Experian did some digging to see how Americans fared financially in 2019, and here are some interesting takeaways based on recent data it compiled.
1. The average American has a $203,296 mortgage balance
Americans carried more housing debt in 2019 than they did in 2018 -- an average of $203,296, as opposed to $198,377 a year prior. Part of that could be a function of rising home prices. But also, as we'll see in a minute, Americans' credit scores have been rising, which may have opened the door to borrowing more.
2. Millennials represent just 15% of U.S. mortgage holders
Millennials have been slow to buy homes, largely because many people of that generation are saddled with leftover student debt from college. The fact that there's only been a limited number of starter homes on the market also explains why millennials represent just 15% of mortgage borrowers across the U.S. That said, the number of millennials with a mortgage has increased 76% in the past five years, which means younger adults are slowly but surely getting into the real estate game.
3. The average American's FICO Score is 703
The average consumer has a FICO Score of 703, up from 701 the year prior. While a general rise in credit is encouraging, it's worth noting that a score of 703 only falls into the "good" range, as opposed to "very good" or "exceptional." With a credit score of 703, you're likely to get approved for a mortgage (or another type of loan), but you won't snag the best rates out there.
4. 59% of Americans have a FICO Score above 700
Most Americans have a credit score that's considered "good" or better. This shows that consumers are getting wiser about maintaining solid credit -- namely, by paying more bills on time, keeping their revolving debt to a minimum, and being judicious about the type of debts they hold and the number of new credit accounts they apply for at once.