4 ways to give lenders all the right signals after a bankruptcy

Think it’s impossible to get a mortgage after you’ve declared bankruptcy? While it’s more difficult, getting a mortgage is still possible. In fact, here are some simple steps you can take right now to start showing lenders you a good investment.

1. Start building a nest egg even a tiny one

Open a savings account at the bank. If money is tight, even a small amount will make a difference. Just be sure to make regular deposits and leave the money in the account to show you’re serious about saving.

How to make it easier: Set up an automatic transfer of a small amount from each pay into your savings account. If you have a bonus or other lump sum, put it in this account for safekeeping.

2. Apply for some credit

Sound risky? The key is to create controlled debt – the kind that shows you pay lenders back.

How to do it: Take out a small loan using your savings account as collateral, then pay it back. Apply for a secured credit card. As you make regular payments, your credit history looks better and better to lenders.

3. Pay every bill no matter what

Never miss a payment on anything again. Cell phone bills, hydro bills, credit cards…they all have to be paid on time.

Don’t agree with the bill? If you need to dispute a bill, pay it first, then dispute it. You can’t afford to be late paying, even if it's for a good reason. The only way lenders know you’ll pay them back is by seeing that you pay others.

4. Get to know your credit report

As you rebuild your credit history, it’s important to get to know your credit reports. Check your reports with Equifax and Trans Union. Some institutions don’t report correctly and this can reflect an inaccurate score. That means you could have more trouble getting credit or be charged a higher interest rate. If there are errors, you need to show your bankruptcy papers to the credit bureau. It will take 2 to 3 months for your score to improve.

Did you know… You have the right to place a 50- to 100-word statement on a credit bureau file. Anybody who orders your report will get a copy of your statement.

Need help?

Need help with any of these steps, or to navigate a complicated mortgage application after bankruptcy? A Mortgage Centre-Durham agent can help.