If you have recently declared bankruptcy or thinking about filing for bankruptcy, it is probably a good idea for to also consider your credit report. Filing bankruptcy is probably the single worst thing you could do in terms of your credit report. That fact will stick out like a sore thumb on your credit report for the next 7 to 10 years and it is primarily for this reason that bankruptcy should have considered your last option resort.
Sometimes bankruptcy is unavoidable but many times there are other options that the consumer was not aware of that would have been a better financial choice in the grand scheme of things. But without the consumer works in and understands all the facets of the very booming financial lending market, it is little wonder that they may not be aware of some of the alternatives that may be open to them.
For example, a debt consolidation program or debt consolidation loan may be all that you need, which does not carry the extremely negative long term effects of bankruptcy, nor does it affect your credit report as dramatically as a huge red flag to future potential lenders. With debt consolidation, you turn your outstanding bills over to a debt consolidation company and make a single payment to them every month. Almost all of these companies work it out so that your total monthly payment to them is significantly less than if you were paying those bills yourself individually, and this additional financial breathing room is frequently all that is needed to avoid bankruptcy and allow the consumer to get his financial act back together.
Bankruptcy can get more complex than you probably realize and can do much more damage than the obvious damage it will do to your credit report. Many people think that it is just a simple matter of wiping out all your debt and starting over. The truth of the matter is that it is anything but simple, especially with the recent changes in bankruptcy law. You may have to liquid assets to satisfy at least a portion of your estimatedness, which may leave you further behind than you were before you started, with the aspects of obtaining a loan to replace those items significantly more bleak than they ever were.
You need to understand that in the financial lending market, which is booming even in these economic times, the interest rate on loans and mortgages is determined by the lender's perceived risk of lending you the money you are requesting. If that perceived risk is high, the interest rate is also high to cover the lender's risk factor. Yes, you can do your best to clean up your credit report to the greatest possible possible, but at the end of the day, the fact that you declared bankruptcy is still going to be staring the lender in the face. If you were to file bankruptcy again with a debt to this lender outstanding, he may be lucky to be able to recoup as much as 10 cents on the dollar, and he is not in business to be losing money.
Before you file for bankruptcy, take the time to find out what options and alternatives you may have. Depending on your circumstances, bankruptcy may indeed be your best option, but you can not make that determination until you have investigated all other possibilities. Bankruptcy is no longer a "do it yourself" operation that can be done from your kitchen table, but is rather a very complex operation with a mountain of reports and forms to be completed.
Your best option overall is to meet with a qualified bankruptcy lawyer to review your situation and advise you of their recommendations and your viable options. Utilizing the services of a bankruptcy lawyer will usually involve legal fees, but studies have shown that the people who used a qualified lawyer more than paid for the legal fees in terms of the items that were able to retain, or the options presented by the lawyer that allowed them to not file bankruptcy at all, thereby not doing the serious damage to their credit report.