Yes, a bankruptcy can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. But, that doesn’t mean you have to wait that long to buy a home. In fact, you could be eligible to apply for a mortgage sooner thank you think.

It all depends on what type of bankruptcy was filed – Chapter 13 or 7 – and the type of loan program you’re applying for. It also depends on how hard you work to rebuild your finances and credit score. Here are three important things to focus on:

Save, save, save: The more money you have saved for a down payment, and the more money you have squirreled away for emergencies, the better your chances will be of getting a loan approved down the road.

Make monthly bill payments on time: Ideally, you’ll want to aim for at least 12 months of consistent, on-time payments for all your monthly obligations before you apply for a home loan again. Keep all your documentation showing you made the payments on time.

Rebuild your credit: After a bankruptcy, you’ll want to take on small amounts of consumer debt and pay them off as promised. You want to show a housing lender that since your bankruptcy, you are handling credit responsibly. Part of doing this is using only a modest portion of the credit that’s available to you and paying your bills promptly.

Don't let a bankruptcy keep you from buying your dream home. Contact us for more homebuyer knowledge and strategies.