The massive earthquake of the financial world continues to have aftershocks:
1) The combination of tightening guidelines and foreclosures has created a glut of inventory.
2) That oversupply is creating the first nation-wide drop in housing values ever.
3) The difficulty in measuring the risk to lenders has resulted in the liquidation of a German bank.
4) When you put all this together, it means that the National Association of Business Economics has declared that bad credit is the number one short-term threat to the US economy.
As all of this shakes out, lenders will be more risk-averse for years to come. Naturally you want to do all the right things like pay your bills on time, be careful about taking on new debt, etc.
TIP: One place I've seen entrepreneurs swing and miss is not monitoring their credit reports, or not taking corrective action when there are derogatory items filed. If you've ever had anything derogatory on your credit report, don't assume it's going away. Make sure you take the matter up with each individual credit bureau, and keep monitoring your report until the matter reflects correctly.