When you have taken good care of your credit, you probably expect that your spouse has done the same with his or hers, right? Unfortunately, this does not always happen. You might not discover your spouse's credit issues until both of you are ready to buy a home. If you are worried that your spouse's credit is going to ruin your chances of getting a mortgage loan, here are some tips to increase your approval chances.

Check His or Her Credit Report

Before you and your spouse, take the time to review his or her credit report. There is a possibility that it contains an error. If so, having it removed could have a positive impact on his or her credit history.

There are several errors in particular that you should look for, including misspellings of the name and the wrong Social Security number. If those are correct, look for these errors:

  • Accounts incorrectly listed as closed by the creditor
  • Debts that are more than seven years old
  • Duplicate accounts
  • Debts from an ex

If there are errors, your spouse needs to write the credit reporting agency. Send the dispute by certified mail so that he or she has proof that the error was disputed. In addition to this, your spouse needs to contact the creditor that reported the error. The creditor can have the information corrected.

Be Smart About Paying Off Debts

Your spouse will need to take care of some of the negative accounts on his or her credit report. He or she has to be smart about how the debts are paid though.

For instance, if your spouse has a debt that is nearing the seven-year mark, not paying it might be the smart move. Creditors are required to close the accounts after seven years. Your spouse could get a bump in his or her credit score by simply waiting.

If your spouse has several credit card debts, he or she needs to sort them according to interest rates. Once that is done, the debts should be paid from the highest rate first to the lowest. While he or she is paying off the balance, remember to also take care of the minimum balance on the other cards. His or her credit score should increase as the debts are paid.

Talk to the mortgage lender you are considering to learn more about what you and your spouse can improve your chances of getting a loan.