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IRVINE, Calif. – Results of a recently completed nationwide study by Experian Consumer DirectT on the effects of mortgages on consumer credit scores show consumers with at least one open mortgage have an average Experian PLUS score of 716, compared to 667 for non-mortgage consumers. Experian Consumer Direct spokesperson Heather Greer emphasized that, “We’re not saying that if you have a mortgage you’ll automatically have a higher credit score. That’s certainly not the case.” Still she said some conclusions can be drawn that explain why consumers with mortgages tend to have higher credit scores than those who don’t. Among the possible explanations is that consumers who have mortgages have over time developed good credit behaviors. In addition, the existence of a mortgage account shows potential lenders that the consumer has been considered creditworthy in the past and is likely to be responsible in handling future financial responsibilities. Overall the study found that: * the average mortgage amount is approximately $136,000 for U.S. consumers, with only 10% of consumer mortgages exceeding $250,000; and * throughout the year, the average number of credit inquiries for home loans is highest in July. The Experian study was compiled using the Experian National Score Index which is based on a nationwide sampling of 3 million consumer profiles. Experian’s PLUS Score is a numeric representation of financial behavior, based on information found in a credit report. The score can range from 330 to 830 with a higher score indicating a lower credit risk. [email protected]

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