A common question that my clients ask me is how long before I can buy a house, a car, or get credit cards.  The filing of a bankruptcy has a negative impact on your credit score and it will affect your ability to obtain credit.  If you are filing for bankruptcy and you are surrendering your home, you will likely need to be pro-active on finding a new place to live and rent.  Here are some tips:

Pre-Bankruptcy – If you know that you will be surrendering your home in the bankruptcy, then it may be a good idea to find a new home/apt and sign a lease before you actually file.  If you sign a lease before you file for bankruptcy then your credit report/score will not reflect a bankruptcy filing.

Post-Bankruptcy – If you start looking for places to live after you file bankruptcy then try to find apartments or homes owned by individuals rather than large apartment complexes.  An individual who runs your credit and notices that you have filed for bankruptcy may still be inclined to rent you a home based on your current job/financial status.  A large chain of apartments will likely use a computer to decide whether or not you will be able to rent from them and with a bankruptcy filing on your credit report the answer will almost always be no.

Co-Signer – If you can find someone to co-sign for you on a lease, then your ability to find an apartment increases drastically.  Hopefully the co-signer will have good credit and then the landlords will be more lenient on your credit report.

Purchasing a home – Don’t expect to be able to purchase a home immediately after bankruptcy.  Typically it will take between two to four years after bankruptcy before you will be able to obtain financing to purchase a home.

If you are thinking of filing for bankruptcy and have questions on how bankruptcy will impact your life please feel free to contact Shmucher Law, PL at 954.309.5559 or 305.741.5553.  Shmucher Law offers free consultations in bankruptcy offices located in Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Plantation, and Sunrise Florida.