Although the U.S. housing market is improving, lending standards remain tight. Banks have become extremely vigilant in their lending practices, requiring a more stable income, enough money for a sizable down payment and a better credit score.

The average credit score of mortgage applicants ranges considerably among the states. In California, the average credit score of an online mortgage applicant in 2012 was 755, while in Mississippi it was 689. Based on online mortgage application data from Mortgage Marvel, a resource for mortgage quotes, 24/7 Wall St. analyzed the 10 states with the lowest credit scores for mortgages.