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Master your credit universe after bankruptcy

Many people bristle at the idea of applying for bankruptcy. Even if you end up with your house and your important assets intact, you may feel as if you will wear a scarlet letter “B” for the foreseeable future. While it is true a Tennessee Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for ten years, it does not have to be the anchor that weighs you down. In fact, you can start rebuilding your credit score right away following bankruptcy.

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy may wipe out your debts, but it does not erase poor financial records that exist on your credit report. The only way you can offset your bad financial record is to build a good one. However, the stigma of bankruptcy may seem to be an insurmountable barrier. Why would banks give you a credit card if you have bankruptcy on your record? Fortunately, there are several ways someone who has passed through bankruptcy can still successfully receive a credit card.

Nerdwallet suggests a secured credit card as one option. You would have to deposit an amount to serve as the credit limit or at least back the card. These cards are generally not for long term use, as you would have to pay interest rates higher than most other cards, but by making timely debt payments on the card, you can build up positive credit history until you can qualify for an unsecured credit card.  

However, if applying for a card is not an option, you may be able to find a friend or family member that can help you out. Financial institutions provide cards where two people can sign on at the same time. It is not necessary for both signers to possess good credit history, only one. By having a family member with good credit sign with you, you can use the card and make payments on it, which will count toward your credit history. But make sure you pay your debts on time, because your co-signer will be obligated to pay your debts if you do not.

Along the way, you may come across advertisements from credit repair agencies who claim they can wipe off bad credit history from your report. The website bankrate.com quotes experts who warn to stay away from such offers, as no agency can actually scrub your record. You are the only one who can actually improve your credit score. However, while you cannot have your bankruptcy or bad credit removed, you can remove inaccurate information and errors from your report or have missing information included.

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We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.