Equifax

Finance Blog

Credit Trends: Does Age Factor into Your Credit Score?

Written by Janet Dedrick on May 14, 2012 in Credit  |   No comments

Age may be just a number, but how does your age translate when it comes to your credit score? Here’s some good news: Age isn’t directly a part of credit score models. However, the life cycle of some accounts can be a factor—the calculation of…

Age may be just a number, but how does your age translate when it comes to your credit score? Here’s some good news: Age isn’t directly a part of credit score models. However, the life cycle of some accounts can be a factor—the calculation of your credit score may rely on how long you’ve held certain accounts and how long you’ve had credit open.

Here’s a refresher on a credit score’s components:

  1. Payment history. Do you make your payments on time or are you late? If you’re late, how late are those payments? Are you paying in full or only making minimum payments? The answers to these questions will be reflected in your credit score.
  2. Amounts owed and available credit balances. Creditors look at how much installment and revolving debt you owe. They also want to know what percentage of your available credit balance you are using.
  3. Length of credit history. How long have your credit accounts been open? Which accounts have been closed and why? These answers will also be factored into your credit score.
  4. New credit accounts. Opening several new accounts can affect the length of your credit history and your available balances, and doing so may negatively impact your credit score.
  5. Types of credit. Creditors like to see a variety of types of credit, including installment loans (such as auto loans), revolving loans (such as a mortgage or home equity loan), and open credit accounts (such as credit cards).

The credit scores of older consumers vs. younger consumers

As you keep these components in mind, it will become apparent that older people are more likely to have a longer credit history upon which to build a score. If you’re younger, it doesn’t mean you will have a low score, but you might have less information on which to base your score.

  • Older consumers, especially retirees, have an established credit history—the what, how long, and how much of a credit score. These are consumers who may have paid off mortgages and car loans, and they probably are able to handle some credit card debt. Their budget and spending habits may not include a mortgage or car loans.
  • Younger consumers are just starting their financial life. They’re taking out their first loans and establishing their first credit accounts. They have a shorter payment history. Younger consumers, as a group, tend to have lower credit scores because they have less information available for calculation. They’re trying to build a credit history, but lower incomes sometimes cap payment abilities. That can translate into late payments and a harder time handling debt.  Younger consumers are also more likely to be victims of fraud. They may not know how to protect against identity theft and how to guard their personal information. These consumer fraud issues can be hard to overcome for someone just entering into the financial world.

The bottom line is that age is not directly calculated into your credit score, but it can play a factor in some of your score’s components. The best thing anyone, young or old, can do for a credit score is to be responsible with taking out credit and to make all payments on time.

No comments yet


Leave a Comment


Name :


Commenting guidelines

We welcome your interest and participation on this forum, but be aware that comments will be published at Equifax's sole discretion. Please don't use this blog to submit questions or concerns about your Equifax credit report or raise customer service issues. Instead, you should contact Equifax directly for all such matters and any attempts to do so in this forum will be promptly re-directed.

Some other factors to consider when commenting:
  1. Registration and privacy. While no registration is required to visit our forum, participants wishing to post a message must register by creating an account. All personal information provided by forum members incident to registration is governed by our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
  2. All comments are anonymous. We'll delete your name, e-mail address, and any other identifying information, including details about your investments.
  3. We can't post or respond to every comment - As much as we'd like to, we can't post every comment, nor can we guarantee that we will respond to each individual message. All questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or similar customer service issues should be handled by contacting Equifax directly.
  4. Don't offer specific legal, tax or financial advice. All of the materials on this Site are for information, education, and noncommercial purposes only and this forum is not intended as a means of expressing views or ideas regarding any specific legal, tax, or investment advice. While offering general rules of thumb is both permitted and encouraged, recommending specific ideas or strategies regarding investments, taxes, and related matters is prohibited.
  5. Credit Repair. This blog is not intended as a venue for the discussion or exchange of ideas regarding credit repair or other strategies intended to assist visitors and community members improve or otherwise modify their credit histories, ratings or scores.
  6. Stay on topic. Your comment should be concise and pertain to the specific post in question.
  7. Be respectful of the community. The use of profanity, offensive language, spam, and personal attacks will not be tolerated and egregious or repeat offenders will be banned from future participation. We encourage disagreement and healthy debate, but please refrain from personal attacks on our WordPresss and contributors.
  8. Finally: Participation in this forum may be terminated by Equifax immediately and without notice for failure to comply with any guidelines or Terms of Use. As such, you should familiarize yourself with all pertinent requirements prior to submitting any response through the blog or otherwise. All opinions expressed in this forum are solely those of the individual submitting the comment, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.


Credit Archive

Stay Informed Sign up for our FREE Equifax email Newsletter