Dissecting The 650 Credit Score

Let’s say you just checked your credit score and found out that it’s at 650. What exactly does that number mean? Is it a good score? Is it a terrible score? Can you buy any house you want with that score? Do they put you in jail if you have that score?

Never fear, the Dr. is here. This site was created just for you and it will cover most of the problems and issues you can face if you have a score in this range. If you have any questions that aren’t covered in the material, please let me know. I want to make this as complete a resource as I possibly can.


I’ve spent a ton of time researching credit and credit scores and on top of that, I once had a credit score of 650. Through my personal experience, I can explain to you the situation you’re in.

How this Score Compares to the National Average

The national average for credit scores in the United States is in the neighborhood of 710 (article on CNBC about credit average). This means that you have a score that’s a little below the national average if you have a 650 score. Of course, the average in your state might be different by as much as 50 points.

The last time I checked, these were the states with the lowest averages (read this article on TIME):

  1. Mississippi – average score of 622
  2. Arkansas – 634
  3. Louisiana – 635
  4. West Virginia – also 635
  5. South Carolina – 636

This matters because no matter what your score, you look a lot better in Arkansas than you do in South Dakota (average credit score of 714) and most lenders primarily service the state where they do business.

If you want to check out the average score in your state, here’s a pretty complete resource for that.

The Effects of Having a Score in this Range

You’ll be able to get a lot of loans with a score in this range. I’ll go into more detail in the free articles about each specific type of loan but you aren’t in too bad of shape. The biggest problem that you’re going to have is that your loans are going to be more expensive because you carry more risk than a person who has a score above the 700 range. Each lender is different but you can take a look at this chart to see how close you are to having a pretty dang solid credit score:

How it's Looking at 650

I have worked really hard over the last few years to improve my score because I knew that I would be buying a home. When they ran my credit during the approval process, I found out that my score is now over 800. Let me tell you how much that affected the mortgage loan I was able to get.

I ended up borrowing $188,900 for 30 years at 3.99% interest. If I calculate the total interest that I’ll end up paying over that period, I will end up paying $135,369.57 in interest.

With a score in the neighborhood of 650, I would have had to pay around 4.5% interest, maybe more. This drastically changes that amount of money I would have to pay over the 30 year term in fact if I borrowed the same amount, I would pay more than $20,000 more in interest for a total of $155,666.28.

Since I’m not in the habit of burning $20,000 (or throwing it away), I decided to wait a little while to buy a home. I improved my score by a lot in the meantime and saved myself $20k.

How to Use this Site

You can find all of the information you need about a score in this range in my free articles. They are all listed in my right sidebar. Scroll up to the top and have a good read. Again, let me know if you have any questions. I can and want to help out however I can. Take care and thanks for visiting the Dr.

2 thoughts on “Dissecting The 650 Credit Score

  1. Hey Robin! There’s never a better time than NOW to start improving your credit score. It doesn’t take as long as you think if you stay committed to the correct principles:

    1. Paying all bills on time.
    2. Paying off credit card debt entirely.
    3. Maintaining one or two credit lines properly.

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