How should we handle our student loans and buy a house at the same time?

My husband and I want to purchase our first house this year. He is an accountant with a decent salary of $37,500 and I am a stay at home mom. We own both of our cars, have no credit card debt, have credit scores in the upper 700's, and have about $28,000 for a down payment. Our only debt are the student... show more My husband and I want to purchase our first house this year. He is an accountant with a decent salary of $37,500 and I am a stay at home mom. We own both of our cars, have no credit card debt, have credit scores in the upper 700's, and have about $28,000 for a down payment. Our only debt are the student loans which total about $60,000. We live very simply, we don't eat out extravagantly and we always do our homework before purchasing even the simplest of items, for example blue jeans. This allows me to stay at home with our daughter. However, he is in the grace period for the student loans (we are in our 30's btw) and they come from many different lenders. The total monthly payment amount is about $600. We have considered consolidating the student loans which would give us an easier payment of $350 a month. We know that mortgage lenders look at credit inquiries. Should we consolidate now or wait until we are getting ready to apply for a home loan which would be in about 9 months? Does it seem possible that we could get approved for a home loan somewhere? The economy is bad right now and we aren't rolling in the dough so I want to make sure that we handle this the correct way. Please no inquiries that we need to pay off our student debt first. It took us making MANY sacrifices to pay off our cars, credit cards, raising our credit scores and saving money to get at this point. We are ready to invest our money. Thanks! Meredith
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