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62% of Experian Boost Users Improved Their FICO® Score

When you're trying to build or improve your credit scores, it can feel like a slow, difficult uphill climb. Perhaps you need to qualify for a new loan or are interested in increasing your borrowing opportunities by opening a credit card—but are having difficulty because you don't have enough credit to attract reputable lenders.

The good news is, improving your credit scores is not impossible. Taking the right steps can help you increase your scores in a relatively short period of time. When Experian Boost launched, it began allowing consumers to include payment history for common monthly bills like utility and telecom accounts in their credit file—helping them build credit history and, in many cases, boosting credit scores at the same time.

Here's a look at how Experian Boost is making a difference in consumers' credit profiles.

62% of Experian Boost Users Have Improved Their FICO® Score*

Through May 2019, some 62% of Experian Boost users have increased their FICO® Score, with an average of 14 points added per user. Overall, more than 3.4 million points have been added to Experian Boost users' FICO® Scores. Experian Boost users who had a poor FICO® Score saw even better results: They had an average increase of more than 21 points. And the average Experian Boost increase for users with a fair FICO® Score was more than 11 points.

Here's a look at all Experian Boost users by age:

  • Experian Boost users between ages 22 and 26 saw the biggest average increase to their FICO® Score of more than 14 points.
  • Experian Boost users between ages 27 and 32 had the next highest average increase of 13.6 points.
  • Experian Boost users between ages 41 and 70 saw an average increase of 13.5 points.

Looking at all Experian Boost users, here is the percentage of those in each FICO® Score tier that saw an increase:

  • 85% of Experian Boost users with a poor FICO® Score saw improvement
  • 62% of Experian Boost users with a fair FICO® Score saw improvement
  • 41% of Experian Boost users with a good FICO® Score saw improvement
  • 37% of Experian Boost users with a very good FICO® Score saw improvement
  • 43% of Experian Boost users with an exceptional FICO® Score saw improvement

90% of Thin File Users Raised Their FICO® Score

Consumers who have four or fewer credit accounts are often considered to have a "thin file," and many lenders may have tighter criteria when reviewing their request for new credit. Among the Experian Boost users who had a thin file, 90% saw an increase to their FICO® Score. In addition, 70% consumers with a subprime credit score saw an increase.

There are a number of consumers who are potentially good risk candidates for lenders, but until now they haven't had enough data for lenders to know that. Adding their utility and telecom payment history can help improve their chances of gaining access to credit.

14% of Experian Boost Users Moved Up to a Higher Tier

Even more encouraging: Among all Experian Boost users, 14% raised their FICO® Score enough to move up to a higher FICO® Score tier as a result. If you improve your FICO® Score, it can help show lenders that you are a better credit risk, which could help you get the better terms on a loan or credit card. Here is a look at the breakdown of users who moved to the next higher FICO® Score tier:

  • 65% of Experian Boost users improved from a poor to fair FICO® Score
  • 27% of Experian Boost users improved from a fair to good FICO® Score
  • 6% of Experian Boost users improved from a good to very good FICO® Score
  • 2% of Experian Boost users improved from a very good to exceptional FICO® Score

It's important to note that if negative information is already impacting a credit score, adding positive information is not necessarily going to suddenly give someone with a bad credit history a good score. What Experian Boost does instead is allows consumers who are paying their monthly utility and telecom bills on time to receive credit for that positive payment history.

West Virginians Averaged Biggest FICO® Score Increase by State

Among Experian Boost users by state, West Virginia consumers saw an average improvement of 15.6 points, the biggest increase to FICO® Scores among all states. Nevada ranked second, with an average increase of 15.4 points, followed by Arizona, with an average increase of 14.6 points. Next was Oklahoma, with an average increase of 14.4 points, followed by Texas and Alabama, which both saw average increases of 14.3 points. In total, 11 states saw average increases above the Experian Boost average of more than 14 points.

Average FICO® Score Increase by State
StateAverage Point Increase
Alabama14.3
Alaska12.4
Arizona14.6
Arkansas14.1
California13.1
Colorado12.6
Connecticut12.2
Delaware11.0
Florida13.2
Georgia13.7
Hawaii10.4
Idaho13.5
Illinois13.1
Indiana13.9
Iowa13.1
Kansas13.8
Kentucky13.0
Louisiana14.0
Maine11.4
Maryland11.6
Massachusetts11.1
Michigan13.8
Minnesota12.6
Mississippi13.1
Missouri12.8
Montana11.6
Nebraska13.3
Nevada15.4
New Hampshire12.0
New Jersey11.2
New Mexico13.9
New York11.5
North Carolina14.0
North Dakota11.4
Ohio13.5
Oklahoma14.4
Oregon13.9
Pennsylvania12.3
Rhode Island12.6
South Carolina14.1
South Dakota10.9
Tennessee13.4
Texas14.3
Utah13.1
Vermont11.2
Virginia12.8
Washington12.9
Washington DC12.0
West Virginia15.6
Wisconsin12.3
Wyoming14.1
Source: Experian

Alaska Had Highest Percentage of Experian Boost Users Who Increased Their FICO® Score

Among states, Alaska accounted for the highest percentage of Experian Boost users who increased their FICO® Score, at 66.8%. Here are the top states where Experian Boost users improved their FICO® Score:

Percentage of Experian Boost Users Who Increased Their FICO® Score by State
RankStatePercentage
1Alaska66.8%
2Idaho66.1%
3Wyoming65.7%
4North Carolina65.6%
5New Mexico65.3%
6Alabama65.2%
7Louisiana65.0%
8Arizona64.5%
9Nevada64.6%
9Texas64.6%
Source: Experian

Okeechobee, Florida, Averaged Biggest Experian Boost Increase of 21 Points

Analyzing the Experian Boost data at the city level shows U.S. cities with the biggest average FICO® Score increases stretched across the country. Consumers in Okeechobee, Florida, who used Experian Boost in the first three months of launch experienced the biggest increase to their FICO® Score, with an average boost of 21.1 points. Here are the other U.S. cities that saw the biggest average score increases among Experian Boost users:

Average Experian Boost Increase and FICO® Score by U.S. City
RankCityAverage Point Increase
1Okeechobee, FL21.1
2Guyton, GA20.8
3Kingsport, TN20.5
4Florence, AZ20.2
5Yucca Valley, CA20.1
6Fernley, NV20.0
7Marion, OH19.9
7Highland, CA19.9
9Lima, OH19.8
10Lompoc, CA19.7
Source: Experian

80% of Boost Users From Statesboro, Georgia, Increased Their FICO® Score

When looking at cities, Statesboro, Georgia, accounted for the highest average percentage of users who increased their FICO® Score with Experian Boost, at 80%. Here are the other U.S. cities where the highest percentage of Experian Boost users improved their scores:

Percentage of Experian Boost Users Who Increased Their FICO® Score by City
RankCityPercentage
1Statesboro, GA80.0%
2Terrell, TX79.7%
3El Monte, CA79.5%
4Prairieville, LA78.9%
5Port Huron, MI78.2%
6Longview, WA76.9%
7Columbia, TN76.7%
8Muncie, IN76.4%
9North Richland Hills, TX76.2%
10Auburn, WA75.8%
Source: Experian

To improve your own financial future, join our Boost America movement and see how consumers across the country are unlocking their financial potential.

Methodology: The Experian Boost data is based on the sample of Experian Boost users who saw an increase to their FICO® Score based on results from February 14, 2019 to May 9, 2019. Experian Boost results may vary. Some may not see improved scores or approval odds. Not all lenders use Experian credit files, and not all lenders use scores impacted by Experian Boost.

The analysis results provided are based on an Experian-created statistically relevant aggregate sampling of our product database and the FICO® Score 8 version. Different sampling parameters may generate different findings compared with other similar analyses. Analyzed credit files did not contain personal identification information.

FICO® is a registered trademark of Fair Isaac Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.


Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer or other company, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. All information, including rates and fees, are accurate as of the date of publication.

This article was originally published on May 15, 2019, and has been updated.

*Credit score calculated based on FICO® Score 8 model. Your lender or insurer may use a different FICO® Score than FICO® Score 8, or another type of credit score altogether. Learn more.

†Results may vary. Some may not see improved scores or approval odds. Not all lenders use Experian credit files, and not all lenders use scores impacted by Experian Boost.

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