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Buying a House After Bankruptcy- How Long?

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A bankruptcy will eliminate debts but can also leave your credit in kind of a rough state. But following a bankruptcy, what should you be concerned with? And how long do you need to wait before considering owning a home?

Typically, when it comes to concerns about purchasing a home, often people find themselves worried about one of two things; credit score and having enough money saved for a down payment. You can read more about how much is needed for a down payment here; we are addressing a credit concern today of many who have struggled with mountainous debt in the past—bankruptcy. After reading this post, our hope is that you are better able to determine your timeline for increasing your chances of being approved for a mortgage.

Knowing the waiting periods for the different types of loans can be reassuring; know that it is possible to take this step toward a sound investment, a home. Generally, having good established/ re-established credit based on 3 or more accounts for 24 months will increase the likelihood of being pre-qualified for a mortgage. With that said, below are the waiting periods for chapter 7 and chapter 13 bankruptcy.

How long after a chapter 7 bankruptcy?

2 Year Waiting Period

  • An FHA loan has a waiting period of 2 years from date bankruptcy was discharged
  • A VA loan has a waiting period of 2 years from date bankruptcy was discharged

3 years Waiting Period

  • A USDA loan has a waiting period of 2 years from date bankruptcy was discharged

4 years Waiting Period

  • Conventional loan has a waiting period of 4 years from date bankruptcy was discharged

How long after a chapter 13 bankruptcy?

1 Year Waiting Period

  • After 12 months of satisfactory payments the home buyer may qualify for an FHA, VA, or USDA loan, with bankruptcy trustee’s approval to purchase.

2-4 Year Waiting Period

  • 2 years from discharge date OR 4 years from dismissal date- Home buyer may qualify for a Conventional loan

If you find yourself in the middle of the waiting period, now is the time to act. Making good credit decisions now will impact your ability to secure a mortgage in the future. Learn what you can do now by reading our post about credit readiness.