Roughly 33 percent of Americans fell behind on credit card payments after collapse of housing market

More than half of 5,027 Americans aged 50 and older say they are not confident about their ability to live comfortably when they retire, according to a recent survey from the AARP.

The U.S.-based non-governmental organization found between October 2007 and October 2010, about a third of individuals in this age range were unable to stay current on their credit card payments and lived in homes that had lost a substantial amount of value.

These two factors have caused financial hardship on a number of Americans, many of whom are now finally getting their finances in order. Some of these individuals who have been able to get their money situations back on track may now be looking to improve their credit in order to secure financing on the ideal retirement home.

Even after making timely credit payments and being more responsible borrowers, some people may continue to suffer from bad credit because of a mistake or problematic item on their records.

Many consumers are unaware that any marks that appear on their credit reports must not only be accurate, but also in accordance with federal mandates. Failure to meet both of these stipulations may mean that borrowers can legally challenge the legitimacy of these items. By disputing questionable negative marks, consumers may be able to remove them from their credit report.