Move to This State and Improve Your Financial Health

Photo (cc) by afiler

If you’re looking to improve the health of your finances, try moving to North Dakota. Or at least avoid Georgia.

Three North Dakota cities made it into the top five slots in NerdWallet’s rankings of cities based on the financial health of residents, which was released today.

By contrast, three Georgia cities were ranked in the bottom five out of 265 cities analyzed.

Based on data from credit bureau Experian and the U.S. Census Bureau, NerdWallet’s rankings reflect residents’:

  • Debt (as measured by average consumer debt as a percentage of per capita income; average credit card debt; and percentage of homes with a second mortgage, home equity loan or both) — 50 percent of the score
  • Financial management (average number of credit cards; average credit score) — 30 percent
  • Spending (percentage of household income spent on housing and related costs by homeowners) — 20 percent

Midwestern cities in general fared well, “likely due to strong economies paired with lower costs of living,” NerdWallet reports.

The relatively low rankings of Southern cities — they comprise a large percentage of the bottom 20 — is perhaps less easily explained. Rod Griffin, Experian’s director of public education, tells NerdWallet:

“Unfortunately Southern cities tend to have lower [credit] scores than Northern cities, particularly the Midwest.”

The 10 cities whose residents’ finances are in the best shape are:

  • Dickinson, North Dakota
  • Bismarck, North Dakota
  • Sioux City, Iowa
  • Minot, North Dakota
  • Moline, Illinois
  • Helena, Montana
  • Appleton, Wisconsin
  • Bloomington, Illinois
  • Rochester, Minnesota
  • Richland, Washington

Residents’ finances are in the worst shape in:

  • Columbia, South Carolina
  • Fresno, California
  • Greenville, North Carolina
  • Tallahassee, Florida
  • Norfolk, Virginia
  • Macon, Georgia
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • San Bernardino, California
  • Albany, Georgia
  • Riverside, California

The average American carries more than $26,000 in nonmortgage debt, including about $3,800 in credit card debt, according to Experian.

If you are struggling with debt, including credit card debt, or need help with a mortgage, be sure to visit the Money Talks News Solutions Center.

Are you surprised by these findings? Let us know what you think below or on Facebook.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
This Is the Best Online Savings Account for 2021
This Is the Best Online Savings Account for 2021

The rate of return is just one of several reasons this account stands out.

5 Reasons You Should Claim Social Security ASAP
5 Reasons You Should Claim Social Security ASAP

Experts often recommend postponing claiming your Social Security retirement benefits. But there are situations in which you should start taking the money sooner.

12 Products to Keep Your Car Clean and Organized
12 Products to Keep Your Car Clean and Organized

These items will help put your vehicular mess to rest — and each is available for less than $20 on Amazon.

Marooned at Home? Earn Some Cash Playing on Your Computer
Marooned at Home? Earn Some Cash Playing on Your Computer

Earn cash by reading emails, taking surveys, playing games, shopping and signing up for offers through this website.

My Favorite Amazon Purchases From 22 Years of Shopping There
My Favorite Amazon Purchases From 22 Years of Shopping There

Yes, I’ve been shopping on Amazon since the 1990s. These are among my most beloved buys.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
10 Things Frugal People Never Buy
10 Things Frugal People Never Buy

If you’re a true tightwad, the mere thought of spending money on these items gives you the willies.

10 Useless Purchases You Need to Stop Making
10 Useless Purchases You Need to Stop Making

You might as well flush your money down the loo if you spend it on these things.

7 Social Security Rules Everyone Should Know by Now
7 Social Security Rules Everyone Should Know by Now

Confusion over Social Security is a shame, considering how many of us will need this money badly.

9 Shopping Mistakes to Avoid at Costco
9 Shopping Mistakes to Avoid at Costco

Are you missing out on serious savings at your favorite warehouse club?

If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It
If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It

They don’t make coffee makers like this anymore.

The 16 Cars Most Likely to Last 200,000 Miles
The 16 Cars Most Likely to Last 200,000 Miles

One automaker takes half the spots on a list of the longest-lasting vehicles.

14 Things You Should Stop Buying in 2021
14 Things You Should Stop Buying in 2021

These convenient household products come with hidden costs that you might not have considered.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

Is Writing a Check Still Safe?
Is Writing a Check Still Safe?

Every time you pay by check, you hand your bank account numbers to a stranger.

6 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Accounts From Hackers
6 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Accounts From Hackers

Imagine having $245,000 stolen from your retirement account — and not being reimbursed.

8 Things You Should Replace to Improve Your Life Today
8 Things You Should Replace to Improve Your Life Today

Being frugal isn’t smart if you put off replacing these items.

This Is the Most Dependable Car Brand in the U.S.
This Is the Most Dependable Car Brand in the U.S.

This brand’s vehicles are least likely to give drivers repair headaches, according to J.D. Power.

7 Social Security Benefits You May Be Overlooking
7 Social Security Benefits You May Be Overlooking

There’s more to Social Security than retirement benefits.

13 Amazon Purchases We Are Loving Right Now
13 Amazon Purchases We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

7 Hidden Sections of Amazon Every Shopper Should Know
7 Hidden Sections of Amazon Every Shopper Should Know

These little-known departments of Amazon are gold mines for deal-seekers and impulse shoppers alike.

7 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook
7 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook

Did you realize all these tax credits and deductions exist — or that they apply to retirees?

The 6 Best Investing Apps for Beginners
The 6 Best Investing Apps for Beginners

If you’re looking to ease into investing in the coronavirus economy with just a little money, check out these easy-to-use tools.

7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best
Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best

One brand takes five of the top honors, while another ranks highest in three categories.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.