Smart Borrower Blog

Texans Carry Most Auto Loan Debt

Sep 18th, 2019 @ 10:23 AM by Amber Nelson

Everything is bigger in Texas, including car loan debt, apparently.

According to a recent study from credit bureau Experian, out of the top 25 U.S. cities with the highest average auto loan debt in the second quarter, 24 of them were in Texas.

Midland, Texas ranked number one, with residents owing an average of $33,847 on their car loans, an increase of 5% since the year before. That means Midland residents owe 76% more than the national average of $19,231.

Other Texas cities near the top of the list included Odessa, Mission, Montgomery, Weslaco and McAllen. The only city outside of Texas on the list was Guaynabo, Puerto Rico.

The Experian study also found that most of the cities with the highest auto debt load also had average credit scores below the national average. Seventeen of the top 25 cities has FICO scores below 703. Weslaco had the lowest average at 640, putting it in the bottom 10% of all ranked U.S. cities.

Of the cities carrying the least amount of car debt two-thirds were in Michigan. Only 8 of the lowest 25 were outside the state. Sterling Heights, Michigan residents had an average auto loan balance of just $11,383 in the second quarter, a 2% increase from last year but 41% lower than the national average.

The non-Michigan cities on the lowest car debt list included Lakewood, N.J., Somerville, Mass., Medford, Mass., Portland, Maine, Forest Hills, N.Y., Rochester, N.Y., Cambridge, Mass., and Buffalo, N.Y.

Interestingly, the average credit score trend is flipped for cities with the lowest auto loan debt. Only 8 had average FICO scores lower than 703; the other 17 had scores above that. Troy, Mich. had the highest score on the list with 750, 47 points higher than the national average.

About Amber Nelson
Amber Nelson is a seasoned mortgage industry writer and a regular contributor to and

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