A new survey from WisePiggy.com shows over 30 percent of Americans mistakenly believe that pulling a soft inquiry of their credit report affects their credit score, while over 58 percent believe that opening a new card doesn’t affect one’s credit score, when in fact, it does.

WisePiggy.com asked 2,000 Americans age 25 and older what factors they believe affect their credit score. Below are the percentage of respondents that said yes to each factor:

• Missing a payment – 68.55 percent
• Correct Answer: Yes

• Where one lives – 14.85 percent
• Correct Answer: No

• Checking one’s credit report – 31.1 percent
• Correct Answer: No

• Outstanding balance versus line of credit – 50.1 percent
• Correct Answer: Yes

• Canceling a credit card – 38.8 percent
• Correct Answer: Yes

• Opening a new card – 42.8 percent
• Correct Answer: Yes

• Income – 32.15 percent
• Correct Answer: No

• Amount in savings – 10.75 percent
• Correct Answer: No

• Number of accounts open – 46.45 percent
• Correct Answer: No

• How often you use a debit card – 9.9 percent
• Correct Answer: No

While some aspects like debit card usage and amount in savings are clear cut for consumers, other actions such as canceling a credit card and outstanding balance versus line of credit show that there are plenty of gray areas when it comes to the credit score formula.

“It’s great that nearly 70 percent of survey participants knew missing a payment would affect their credit scores, until you consider that more than 30 percent don’t think this will hurt their credit,” says Loryll Nicolaisen, WisePiggy.com managing editor. “Clearly we can all learn more about the factors that can strengthen or diminish our credit score.”

Among all age groups, those 35-54 seem to have the best understanding of what has an effect on their credit score, while those in the younger demographic seem to be unsure how opening and closing cards impacts their score, and older respondents aren’t as confident on how where one lives affects their score.

“It’s extremely valuable for consumers to know and monitor their credit score and reports,” Nicolaisen says. “Credit arguably affects all factors of your life, and checking your free credit score from WisePiggy.com is one step anyone can take to proactively manage his or her finances.”

You can view the full survey results here: https://www.wisepiggy.com/credit_tutorial/credit_score/pop-quiz-do-you-know-what-affects-your-credit-score.html.