Many people are under the assumption that you are essentially ruined after you file for bankruptcy for at least 7 to 10 years. In fact, this is a misconception. It is true that a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will remain on your credit report for 10 years, and a Chapter 13 will stay on the report for seven years. However, the existence of a bankruptcy on your credit report will not necessarily preclude you from obtaining credit, and this will include a home mortgage.
The exact period of time that you have to wait to be able to obtain a mortgage after bankruptcy depends on the type of loan. FHA loans are very popular because they are guaranteed by the government and the minimum down payment is small. You will typically have to wait three years after a Chapter 7 discharge to obtain this type of mortgage. With a Chapter 13, after you have kept your repayment plan current for 12 months, you could potentially qualify for an FHA home loan.
Many veterans can qualify for a VA mortgage. This type of home loan is similar to the FHA loan with regard to the government guarantee that eliminates the need for mortgage insurance, and qualified veterans can get a VA mortgage with nothing down. The minimum waiting period for eligibility after bankruptcy is two years.
For conventional loans, you can become eligible three years after the discharge in a Chapter 7. Many people can qualify for a conventional mortgage shortly after a Chapter 13 has been successfully completed.
Since the requirements for mortgage qualification changes frequently, you should contact an experienced mortgage broker to discuss recent changes to the timelines noted above.
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