Good morning Elizabeth,
Often I meet clients who think their credit is, as you say, "not so good." When I review their credit we find they actually qualify for a mortgage loan!
You mention not fully paying off credit cards. Let me strongly caution you NOT to pay off your cards! In today's lending environment we definitely want to see accounts open and active with balances. I recommend speaking with an experienced Mortgage Banker to get properly prequalified. The Mortgage Banker will review your Income, Assets, and Credit. If you are not qualified due to your credit score, your Mortgage Banker can recommend a course of action to improve your credit and become qualified in the future.
Beware of anyone offering to "repair" your credit! The Federal Trade Commission issued a stern warning last year that such offers are scams. Find more from the FTC HERE: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre13.shtm
I am a Licensed Mortgage Loan Originator in New York State working for a Direct Lender. I have been helping First Time Buyers as a mortgage professional for 22+ years. If you wish to explore this further, I'd be happy to help!
PowerHouse Solutions, Inc.
185 Great Neck Rd, Suite 240
Great Neck NY 11021
Licensed Mortgage Banker â€“ NYS Dept. of Financial Services