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Level 4

Raise credit score

How is the best way to improve credit score after bankruptcy
2 Replies
Level 8

Raise credit score

From what I've read, it first depends on type. The Chapter 13 bankruptcy credit report penalty will last 7 years from the date of final discharge. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy credit report penalty will last 10 years from the date of final discharge. Either way, the “weight” of the filing will decrease over time. So, step 1 is patience (because the Year 1 effect of the filing is worse than the Year 5, etc.). 


Okay, so once you've mastered the mindset piece (I struggle with patience, so this is no small step), step 2 is: ensure the accounts included in your bankruptcy show a zero balance. If any accounts don’t appear as paid, go through credit repair to make disputes so you can have those items removed. This is important - seriously, review the accounts and ensure their balances reflect the bankruptcy. 


Step 3 isn't terribly novel - just start making on-time payments. Religiously. Never miss a payment. No need to open up additional credit lines. No need to do anything out of the ordinary (although a secured card could help demonstrate credit-worthiness if you're so inclined). Just take a long view and start chipping away. 


What was your score pre-filing, what is it now, what's your score goal, and how long would you like it to take?


(related: hang in there!)



Level 8

Raise credit score

Phew, that's a tough one - even though I have an employee badge, I don't have all the answers. :(


I would say though, it's going to be a slow haul, I've heard bankruptcies take a long time to clear up. Since you are starting over, I'd say do the following:


  1. Don't spend more than you make
  2. Pay every bill on time (or within the 'not late' window). 
  3. If you are going to use a credit card, only put things on it that you can afford to pay off that month. That way the credit agencies can see you are responsible with money. 


Hope that helps a bit, good luck! Please let us know how it goes.