Having a zero interest credit card can be appealing because it allows you to transfer large balances from high interest cards and make substantial purchases without an interest rate to deal with. For individuals who have declared bankruptcy within the past 10 years, you will most likely not qualify for a zero interest credit card. Credit card companies will only approve cards of this kind to those with good or excellent scores. However, there may still be ways for you to obtain the card even with bad credit.
Be an Authorized User
If you’re set on getting a zero interest credit card but have a bankruptcy on record, you may want someone else to sign up for the card for you. Ideally, this individual should have a good or excellent score and can add you as an authorized user. This gives you the ability to use the card at any time once it has been approved, but your credit history will not be a deciding factor. The one downfall to using this strategy is that the actual owner of the card can remove you at any time, leaving you without a card to use and a balance you’ll need to pay back.
Continually Build Credit
You need to work on your credit score while waiting for the bankruptcy to clear from your record. It takes about 10 years for this blemish to be removed, and this is a lengthy time period you can use to your advantage. Use this time to begin establishing responsible money-spending habits. You might not qualify for a zero interest card right now, but there are many other companies willing to take you on as a client. You may not get the best rate, but using your new card responsibly will help slowly build credit. Once you’ve repaired your credit fully, you can apply for a better interest rate card and use it as you see fit.
Be wary of companies that offer quick credit score repair, as many of these are scams just looking to take your money. It takes time to get those numbers up and it’s not something that a company can quickly do overnight. Be more responsible with your money, get yourself on a budget and avoid spend-happy expenditures that can otherwise be avoided entirely.
Sometimes, you’ll find an error on your credit report that is still affecting your general score. If you filed for bankruptcy over 10 years ago and it’s still showing on your report, you need to get in touch with the Federal Credit Bureau to remove this immediately. You are allowed to check your credit report once each year without it affecting your score. Checking it more than that will result in a reduction of five points per check, which can really add up over time.
Declaring Bankruptcy Years Before Applying
It takes anywhere from seven to 10 years for a bankruptcy to get off of your credit report, depending solely on the type of bankruptcy you declared. If it’s already been a decade since you filed for bankruptcy, chances are that your credit score has improved and you’ll qualify for a zero interest credit card. You can check your score at any time using services like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame. Credit card companies often approve cases for individuals with a credit score over 630. If your score isn’t yet in this range, keep working on building it up. It’s always better to work on improving your score than do things that can further damage it. You will be glad you made the effort when you finally qualify for an affordable low interest card.
Bankruptcy can be an emotionally and financially exhausting process that more than one million people go through each year. Just because you declared bankruptcy in the past does not mean that you’re doomed to a life full of financial difficulties and setbacks. What it means is that you need to change the way you view spending and money borrowing so that you can rectify past mistakes. Bankruptcy is a time to carefully assess your finances and get yourself back on your own two feet. After all, the benefit of going through bankruptcy is to remove large financial hurdles in order to start fresh.
Don’t feel that just because you’re dealing with loan denials, high interest credit cards and unapproved mortgages means that this is going to be your story for life. It could take years to repair your credit score from a bankruptcy, but it gives you the chance to change your ways while repairing those numbers so that you don’t file for bankruptcy again just because you fell into the same hole that you were once able to dig yourself out of.