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Iowa's Credit Score Ranks Higher Than National Average

A person swipes a credit card through a credit card machine.
Mark OFlynn
Iowans have a higher credit score than the national average, which could mean a smoother path to recovering from the economic recession.

Despite the global pandemic causing job loss, income loss and economic shutdowns, Iowa’s average credit score is higher than the national average. The average balance on Iowans’ credit cards is also consistently lower than the average balance across the United States.

The credit reporting agency Experian announced that in 2020, Iowa scored 708, which is 17 points higher than the nation's average of 691.

Rod Griffin, the senior director of public education and advocacy for Experian, said although he is not an economist, that higher score could affect how Iowa will recover from the economic recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I saw it as a positive sign. The relatively good news is that we seem to be in a position to recover fairly quickly as we go forward," Griffin said.

Griffin clarified this does not necessarily mean a “sudden vertical improvement,” but it does mean Iowans have done pretty well with keeping up their credit and keeping their balances low throughout the pandemic. And those numbers are a good thing.

“They indicate that people in Iowa are not becoming over leveraged with credit cards and they’re continuing to make their payments on time by a margin," Griffin said. "Certainly doing better than the national average.”

Griffin said it is relatively common for the Midwest to have higher credit scores.

Iowa, however, has a slightly higher rate of delinquency. Iowans are falling behind on required monthly payments to credit card companies at a slightly higher rate than the national average, but not by much. The average 30 to 60 day delinquency for Iowa was only .2 percent higher than the average U.S. delinquency.

As far as other forms of debt, Experian found on average Iowans owe less on mortgage and auto loans/leases than the national average.

Kassidy was a reporter based in Des Moines
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