Cities Where Millennials Carry the Highest Credit Card Balances

Famous Beverly hills palms in a sunny day

There is no shortage of advice given to millennials these days, no matter the topic. How to manage their personal finances is certainly high on the list. Despite the unsolicited counsel, staying on top of credit card debt is one piece of advice all generations should hear.

Millennials occupy two distinct credit landscapes: Half of them are in their 20s and just starting to flex their new credit freedom, while the other half are in their 30s and likely contemplating bigger credit (and life) decisions. Those decisions can help or hurt their finances moving forward.

As part of Experian's ongoing analysis of millennials and credit, we looked at data from the second quarter (Q2) of 2019 to examine their credit card debt, the two groups within the generation, and where millennials have the highest credit card balances in the U.S.

How Much Credit Card Debt Do Millennials Have?

Millennials accounted for about 20% of all credit card debt in Q2 2019, an increase of 2 percentage points year over year. Their generation was the only one to see a marked increase in overall credit card balances in Q2 2019. Since 2015, millennials have seen their average FICO® Scores increase 17 points and their average credit card balance increase by $1,390.

Average FICO® Score65166817
Average Credit Card Balance$3,499$4,889$1,390

Source: Experian Q2 data from each year

Looking at millennials in their 20s compared with those in their 30s provides insight into consumers just starting out in the credit space and those who are more established. Younger millennials have lower credit scores and less debt than their 30-something counterparts.

Millennials 23 to 30 years old20152019Difference
Average FICO® Score64966112
Average Credit Card Balance$1,993$3,441$1,448

Source: Experian Q2 data from each year

Not surprisingly, older millennials have increased their FICO® Scores by a wider margin while also maintaining higher credit card balances. As consumers get older, their credit card balances continue to rise until about their 50s. In fact, credit card balances peaked at age 50 in the Q2 2019 data.

Millennials 31 to 38 years old20152019Difference
Average FICO® Score65467419
Average Credit Card Balance$4,129$5,861$1,732

Source: Experian Q2 data from each year

Now let's take a look at the cities where millennials carry the highest average credit card balance in each state and the top 50 cities in the U.S. by average millennial credit card balance.

Cities Where Millennials Carry the Highest Credit Card Balances

Beverly Hills, California, is home to the highest average credit card balance among millennials at $12,136, according to Experian Q2 2019 data. That's a 6% increase year over year from $11,404 in Q2 2018 and more than double the national average millennial credit card balance of $4,889. In Burlington, Vermont, millennials carried the lowest average credit card balance of $3,801, which is up 7% from their average balance of $3,540 in 2018.

Top 50 U.S. Cities With Highest Millennial Credit Card Balances

When we ranked the top 50 cities in the United States by the highest credit card balances among millennials, California was home to 10 cities. A few other well-populated states were also represented, as Texas had nine cities ranked in the top 50, followed by Florida with eight and Virginia with six.

Top 50 Cities Ranked by Highest Credit Card Debt Among Millennials
1Beverly HillsCA$12,136
3Coral GablesFL$8,524
5Sherman OaksCA$7,368
6Santa MonicaCA$7,349
7Newport BeachCA$7,303
9The WoodlandsTX$7,141
11Santa ClaritaCA$7,009
16Winter GardenFL$6,882
17West OrangeNJ$6,877
19Valley StreamNY$6,872
20Boca RatonFL$6,849
21New YorkNY$6,833
24Little ElmTX$6,692
26Oak HarborWA$6,666
28Castle RockCO$6,653
31League CityTX$6,632
32West BloomfieldMI$6,623
35Miami BeachFL$6,604
37Upper MarlboroMD$6,556
38Ewa BeachHI$6,510
39Redondo BeachCA$6,491
40Cutler BayFL$6,487
43Virginia BeachVA$6,454
45Delray BeachFL$6,425
46Granada HillsCA$6,394
49Woodland HillsCA$6,370

Source: Experian Q2 2019 data

Methodology: The analysis results provided are based on an Experian-created statistically relevant aggregate sampling of our consumer credit database that may include use of the FICO® Score 8 version. Different sampling parameters may generate different findings compared with other similar analysis. Analyzed credit data did not contain personal identification information. Metro areas group counties and cities into specific geographic areas for population censuses and compilations of related statistical data.

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