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Buying a House After Bankruptcy

Medha Godbole Nov 1, 2018
Buying a house is a daunting task and for people who have lost everything, to rise from scratch and even think of any other expense is quixotic. However, you can still nurture your dream of buying a house after bankruptcy by following some essential tips.
Bankruptcy is not a very pleasant thing and has a certain social stigma attached to it. Once you file for it, then it is difficult to rise and repair the financial rut you are in. It is a traumatic period for those who go through it. But there are those, who in spite of this difficult financial situation, think of something like home buying.
Well, it is not impossible, but you should be patient and manage your negligible financial resources judiciously. Another thing to remember is that time is a very significant factor. This is because normally after 2 years of bankruptcy you can buy a house is. But all said and done, this issue looms large in the psyche of the people.

Steps to Buy A House after Bankruptcy

Step I

  • Firstly, request for a credit report from the three major credit bureaus.
  • This is done primarily, as lenders check the credit report after you apply for a mortgage or check out for home loans after filing for bankruptcy.

Step II

  • After examining your report minutely, highlight the negative remarks on the same.
  • Once you are done, send letters to the credit bureaus, requesting them to remove these items.
  • Never ask for more than four removals in a letter. Remember, even after bankruptcy filing, the report will mention all the debt discharged by you.

Step III

  • Begin saving money now, as a minimum of 10% down payment would be needed.
  • Save as much as possible in a high interest rate savings account. Cut down as much as possible on expenditure.
  • Have automatic payments on bills, for avoiding the pending defrayal, especially in case of loans of any kind.

Step IV

  • In case you make a late payment, ensure that you pay it before it becomes late for 30 days.
  • It is important to pay off your debts as much as possible or totally, to be in a better situation.
  • This is taken into account by money or mortgage lenders when they deem your financial condition fit for mortgage. More the debt, the more problems it will create.

Step V

  • Finally, ask a member of your family to sign the papers along with you.
  • It is only after this step is executed that you may begin searching for a house.
  • Besides, there are some other points that you need to remember before you take the plunge which are enlisted here.


Two Year Mark

  • Once the bankruptcy is discharged, after 2 or 3 years of that date, you would be able to get mortgage loans easily.
  • You can even get a mortgage loan sans prepayment penalty if there is a small down payment.
  • Thus, if you are around the 6-month mark within that period of two years, it would be better to wait and have as many mortgage loan options as you can.

Do not Go Overboard

  • A crucial point here is to settle for a house that you are sure of being able to afford.
  • Avoid stretching your income, expenses, and credits beyond a limit.
  • You need to think about the consequences if your income suddenly drops. After all, you still have to make the payments, right? So, do not live right up to the edge of your income.

Penalty before Payment

  • A prepayment penalty has a majority of sub-prime home loans.
  • It contains 6 months worth of house payments, lasting for maximum three years.
  • After signing the mortgage documents, if you do not have money to pay prepayment penalties, you are in a deep abyss. You can make the payments or forget about the house.
  • Make sure you save as much as you can and pay off your debts as much as possible, post bankruptcy. In fact, do not let the situation arise in the first place.
You can surely buy a house even after you have filed for bankruptcy, with patience and judicious use of financial resources. All the Best!