You will definitely want to find out how to increase your particular credit scores. I would be happy to pull your credit for free and give you one on one assistance @ 636-399-1692. I prefer to meet clients in person and we have 4 offices throughout St. Louis.
Kyle D. Weaver
Licensed Mortgage Loan Officer
NMLS 235637 MLO: 1639 MO
If you want more info call me or email me 314-337-7299 email@example.com
With a lease-option, you're leasing. It's a lease.
Then, at some point, you exercise your option and purchase. At that point, you're using conventional financing. There's no special "lease-option" or "lease-purchase" loan. The bank just looks at you like a buyer. (It's possible, if it's properly structured, to get credit for the time you were leasing. But it's still a conventional loan.)
By the way, never, ever, ever agree to a lease-option of under a year. In fact, stay away from anything less than two years. Try for three to five.
Because you're fairly typical--you and your husband both want to improve your credit scores, and probably need to in order to get conventional financing. That won't work in 6 months. It takes a while to raise your scores, and it takes a while for your actions (paying down credit cards, paying off some debts, etc.) to "ripple through" and affect your credit. With a 6-month option, you'd have to apply for financing in 4 months. I doubt any lender will tell you, with a straight face, that they can assure you that your credit scores will be where they need to be in 4 months.
Look: If you can get your credit scores to where they need to be in 4 months, don't do a lease-option or lease-purchase. Just wait 4 months and buy conventionally. (And I'm a big advocate of lease-options . . . in the right situation. But if you can buy conventionally in 4 months, that's NOT the right situation for a lease-option.)
So: As some of the others advise--contact a lender. Have him/her run your scores and give you some guidance on what to do to raise them . . . and, realistically, how long that'll take. Then, if you do go the lease-purchase or lease-option route, settle for an absolute minimum time period of two years or double whatever the lender projects . . . whichever is longer.
Hope that helps.
I have great lender to recommend if you need a referral.
Keller Williams Realty