If you feel swallowed up in mounting debt, then the protection offered by personal bankruptcy may bring you welcome relief from the pressure put on you by creditors. However, as many of those working with our team here at Christopher Todd Morrison, P.C. can attest to, there is a financial toll that results from seeking bankruptcy protection. 

The most obvious and immediate is the impact on your creditworthiness. This prompts the question of how long you must wait after filing for bankruptcy to qualify for a mortgage. 

Waiting to apply for a mortgage 

Unfortunately, there is no easy answer to that question. Typically you cannot try to take on more debt while your bankruptcy case is still active. After your discharge date, a lender may approve you for a mortgage if you have a large enough down payment, yet your credit score could cause you to have to pay a higher interest rate. It is for this reason that (according to Lending Tree) experts recommend waiting the following time periods before seeking financing through common mortgage programs: 

  • Conventional: 2 years after a Chapter 7 case, 2-4 for a Chapter 13 case  
  • FHA: 2 years after Chapter 7, 1 year after Chapter 13 
  • USDA: 3 years after Chapter 7, 1 year after Chapter 13 
  • VA: 2 years after Chapter 7, 1 year after Chapter 13 

How could waiting benefit you? 

While it may be difficult to have to wait after your bankruptcy to buy a home, it may ultimately be in your best interest. Not only does it give you time to improve your credit rating (helping you secure a better interest rate), but it also provides time for you to save up a significant down payment (which can increase your buying power). You can find more information on planning for your post-bankruptcy life throughout our site.