10 U.S. Cities with the Lowest Credit Scores

May 23, 2013

Not all cities are the same when it comes to credit health. An analysis of average credit scores in the largest U.S. cities uncovered a wide fluctuation in the 10 metropolises with the lowest average credit score. * Is your city on this list?

  1. Jackson, MS – 606
  2. Detroit, MI – 612
  3. Memphis, TN – 620
  4. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX – 622
  5. Baton Rouge, LA – 626
  6. Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL – 627
  7. Oklahoma City, OK – 627
  8. Birmingham- Hoover, AL – 628
  9. El Paso, TX – 630
  10. Greenville-Mauldin-Easley, SC – 630

Just because a city has a low average credit score, doesn’t mean that its residents can’t pay their bills on time. There can be other underling factors; including a high number of foreclosures, a high unemployment rate or an overall low median household income.

Both Detroit, Michigan and Lakeland, Florida on our list also topped Realty Trac’s list for cities with highest foreclosure rates in 2012. Detroit ranked 39th in their October report and Lakeland ranked 5th in August with 1 in every 297 homes filing for foreclosure.

Although the overall economy is slowly getting better, most of the cities on our list have seen a decrease in their average credit score since last year. One of the reasons could be that credit scores are a tailing indicator, meaning that your current score indicates where you have been rather than where you are going. The residents of these cities are likely working to improve their credit situation following a difficult time for the economy.

Amy Leone is the Public Relations Coordinator at Credit Karma. Before joining the team in June 2012 she spent most of her career as a TV news producer. When she’s not helping promote Credit Karma on a variety of media outlets, she’s probably out running or exploring her new state of California.

*These numbers come from our April 2013 data. We took a look at the credit scores of the 1,615,960 of Credit Karma members total, ages 18 and above.