Raising credit score in 5 months?

My husband and I are hoping to buy a house in the summer. Right now our credit scores are in the low low 500's. We have about 5 collection accounts ranging from 2003-April 2007. I paid off about 4 collection accounts but don't have the money to take care of these all right now. I have our credit cards... show more My husband and I are hoping to buy a house in the summer. Right now our credit scores are in the low low 500's. We have about 5 collection accounts ranging from 2003-April 2007. I paid off about 4 collection accounts but don't have the money to take care of these all right now. I have our credit cards paid down to 30% and have been paying our vehicle and credit cards on time. Is it possible to get our scores up to mid 500s to qualify for a good mortgage loan by July? Our mortgage person is a friend who told us we needed at least a 540 to get a good rate and 97% financing.
Update: In response to the answer, we have dealt with people we don't know and seem to get screwed every time, at least I can trust her. I actually monitor our credit at myfico.com
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