There may be many reasons why you are looking to find out what the average credit score is. You may be trying to evaluate where you stand, you may be trying to qualify for a loan, or you may simply be curious and just want a slight improvement in your standing.

The average American credit score is 680, based on researched findings by Experian, one of America’s top 3 credit bureaus. Each of the different credit score scale stats in the nation have their own average credit scores ranging from South Dakota with the highest at 710, and Texas with the lowest at 651. So how does your credit score hold up to the average credit score rating?

Now that you know the national average credit score, you may want to know what kinds of factors actually affect people’s credit score. While there are 5 main factors that could potentially affect your credit score, two of them hold the most weight (65% combined, in fact.) One of those parts is your payment history, which accounts for 35% of your total credit score. How well and how often you pay your bills counts. If you pay late, or don’t pay, that can negatively affect you.

The second factor is how much debt you actually have. If you have too much debt compared to what the credit bureaus think that you may be able to handle, then that can negatively affect your credit score and you’ll basically have to fix bad credit scoring. If you are steadily paying off your debt, and not accumulating more debt, then you will start to see your credit score rise about the average credit score in America.

In case you didn’t know already, credit scores range from 300-850. And while the average credit report score is 680, most people consider anything above 700 to be a good credit score.  Achieving a perfect credit score is not really possible, though you can get close to it.

Focus on paying your debts on time, steadily paying them off, helping to erase bad credit that you’ve accumulated, and you will really see your credit score rise – answering the question you’ve been asking yourself – “how do I improve my credit score?”.