Home purchase hit with surprise fee

Learn the New Luxury Playbook at Luxury Connect | October 18-19 at the Beverly Hills Hotel

Q: I'm a single mother, and have worked for several years to save up enough money for the downpayment on a house. I've paid every single bill on time for years now, and my credit score is in the high 700s. However, about four years ago, my now-ex-boyfriend abandoned a car I had helped him buy. My credit was better than his, so we put both of our names on the title and the loan so he could get a better rate and lower payment. When we split up, I took my car, and he took his, and he promised to keep the payments up. Of course, he didn't pay the bill and the car was repossessed. There is an open but old collections account for the $2,000 he failed to pay. I'm not paying it as a matter of principle -- it is not really hurting my credit score. And I'm pretty sure he's broke, so I can't count on him to pay it, either. However, my mortgage broker says the bank will require the collection account to be paid off before they'll let me buy a home. Is that correct? How can I get aroun...