How to Build Your Credit After You've Gone Bankrupt

If you are contemplating going through bankruptcy or have been through it recently, there is no need to panic. You will still be able to get credit after you go bankrupt; however, there are some things you will need to know.

First of all, it is important to remember that bad credit does not last forever. While a bankruptcy can stay on your credit report for up to ten years, you will be able to bring your credit score higher within a short time. Basically, it is the principal of learning by your previous mistakes by gaining better credit habits and not using all of your available credit at one time.

The second thing you need to know is that in order to rebuild your credit, you have to use credit. Many people after bankruptcy use cash only. This, unfortunately, is not going to rebuild your credit. You have to show you can make timely payments on smaller credit amounts before you can get something bigger like a mortgage.

The following items can help you to rebuild your credit in a much shorter time than you may believe.

  • 1. The first thing you should do is to obtain a copy of your credit report from three different credit bureaus. If you notice that there are still accounts being reported as overdue that were included as part of your bankruptcy, you need to contact the credit bureaus. Let them know that these were included in your bankruptcy and need to be reported as such. Any mistakes on your credit report should be taken care of by you as your credit report is what determines your credit score.
  • 2. The next step is to obtain a secured credit card. These allow you to put money in the bank and use that money for collateral against the card. Be sure to watch for high application and annual fees before choosing which company to go through for a secured credit card and make sure the card you choose reports to major credit bureaus. There are some cards that will also let you convert to an unsecured card after making timely payments for at least twelve months. Also remember to not max out the credit allowed on this card.

Both of these items will help you to rebuild your credit, however, there are other steps you can take, as well.

  • 1. Open a savings and checking account to show them you are responsible with money.
  • 2. Pay your monthly utility bills on time.
  • 3. Take out a small loan and have a co-signer. Make all payments on time.
  • 4. Apply for a gas card and make sure you make the payments on time.

By following these steps, you can rebuild your credit and soon you may be able to take out a home loan or purchase a car. Creditors generally want to see that you have learned from your mistakes, so the key to rebuilding your credit is to make payments on time. It is also very important not to max out all the available credit to you.