Congratulations! You’ve successfully fulfilled your 3 year period of bankruptcy and have been discharged, so now what? You’ve obviously taken the most appropriate measures to address your financial troubles by declaring bankruptcy, and all your debts are well behind you now. Bear in mind though, there’s still a lot of work involved to get your finances back on track. The biggest issue that discharged bankrupts confront is their capability to borrow money, and the main reason for this is their poor credit rating.
For the previous three years, you’ve had no debts to repay so your credit history has nothing to show other than a bankruptcy mark against your name. There’s been no movement on your credit report, so a blank page will make lending institutions hesitant in lending money to you simply because they can’t assess your repayment habits. Rebuilding your credit rating is the best way to get your finances back on track, and make your recovery process as smooth as possible.
How you can repair your credit report after discharge?
Since financial institutions haven’t been able to examine your financial management skills for the past 3 years, you have to start exhibiting healthy financial habits. Here’s a list of ways in which you can do this
- Steady employment
Attaining stable and ongoing employment is a fantastic way to boost your financial security and demonstrate to financial institutions that you have a regular income source. Reliable employment will enable you to increase your savings and bolster your overall financial circumstances, resulting in a better credit rating.
- Increase your savings balance
Your savings account is an asset, so increasing your savings balance over time will demonstrate to loan providers that you are financially dependable and are capable of making loan repayments. By putting money into a specialised savings account every month, even a small amount, will improve your credit rating.
- Limit your credit applications
Each time you apply for a line of credit, it is documented on your credit history, so excessive credit applications can adversely impact your credit rating. After being discharged, it’s extremely important that you are pragmatic and vigilant about the types of credit you apply for to increase the likelihood of approval. It’s best to apply for a single line of credit at a time, and keep in mind that secured loans and options with a guarantor or joint accounts will increase the likelihood of approval.
- Contemplate a term deposit
If you’ve had the chance to save money during your bankruptcy period, think about investing some of it into a term deposit account. Not only will you accumulate interest and improve your overall financial situation, it will additionally show lending institutions that you are financially sensible. Subsequently, your chances of acquiring a loan will be increased which leads to an improved credit rating.
- Always make repayments on time
One of the most important things you can do as a discharged bankrupt is to make any kind of repayment on time. Whether it’s your electricity, rent, or even a secured loan in your name, making these repayments on time will undoubtedly improve your credit report and increase the confidence that lenders have in your financial management capabilities.
- Don’t hesitate to talk with lenders
If you want to apply for a line of credit after your bankruptcy period, or explore what types of options are available to you, don’t be reluctant to speak with banks or other financial institutions to review your circumstances. They are in the best position to advise of your eligibility, and provide information on what options would work best for your personal situation.
Be mindful of credit repair firms
There are loads of credit repair agencies that will make all kinds of promises to improve your credit record. While many of them are useful in disbuting any incorrect listings on your credit record, they may not be able to do anything else to improve your credit record. The Government’s MoneySmart website (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) advises discharged bankrupts to be “very careful” of these agencies due to the fact that they “may not always be able to do what they claim they can”.
If you require any support in repairing your credit report, or have any concerns about your recovery process after bankruptcy, it’s always best to seek advice from qualified professionals. Talk with Bankruptcy Melbourne on 1300 879 867, or alternatively you can visit our website for additional information: www.bankruptcymelbourne.com