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But the damage might not be as bad as you anticipate.

Life After Foreclosure and Hidden Opportunities | Credit Unions

According to MSN Money :. Certainly, it damages it, but bankruptcy causes more of a drop in FICO scores.

Homeowner Responsibilities After Foreclosure

Oddly, the lower your score to begin with, the less it is affected. The higher the score, the bigger the impact. But even if you started with a high score— or above—you might still make it out of foreclosure hanging on to a FICO score as high as The lower your initial score is, the less time it will take to bounce back, too.

A consumer with a score of or above will take about seven years to get back to that number.

Bankruptcy and Foreclosure in 2010, then an All-Cash Lifestyle

In the meantime, adopt good financial habits to rebuild your credit. Here are a few steps to take in that direction, according to Credit. After a foreclosure, any of your existing credit card companies may decide to raise your interest rate.

Bankrate reports that your interest rate can increase to as much as 30 percent. Getting a car loan will also be difficult at this time. If your credit record is otherwise good, you might see lower interest rates in two years. Of course, interest rates on home loans will take longer, Bankrate explains. Historically, mortgage defaults have been the result of catastrophic financial distress.

Conventional wisdom assumed homeowners would forgo paying all other debts, hold the mortgage payment sacrosanct and keep it as their first priority.

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Foreclosure and Loan Modification Blog

However, research conducted by TransUnion, a national credit reporting agency, has shown that a growing number of consumers continue paying other debts, such as bankcards and auto loans, as they let the mortgage default. A percentage of the consumers with a foreclosure on their credit files has no other delinquency present.

When these consumers subsequently apply for new loans, credit unions may likely take some course of adverse action, such as increased pricing, less favorable terms or denial. These actions are made pursuant to the reasoning that previous derogatory credit is a primary indicator of future derogatory credit performance. But the TransUnion study indicates that this approach may no longer makes sense in all cases.

Second-Tier Entitlement

While credit scores remain the best predictors of risk, external factors influencing consumers, such as unemployment and home value depreciation, show they might perform differently than one would expect. The TransUnion research shows that consumers might be more likely to pay other debts rather than real estate secured debts, particularly in certain states where real estate prices dropped dramatically.


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If the consumers are more likely to pay other debts, should they be considered for new non-real estate secured loans? This brings about a potential opportunity for credit unions that are willing to extend credit to these consumers. Pockets of opportunities outside of the highly targeted prime segment can be found in foreclosure populations — potentially profitable, loyalty-building, low competition prospects. In particular, the TransUnion study revealed that consumers who defaulted only on their mortgage loans during the recession were far better risks than those who had a foreclosure and other contemporaneous delinquency.

Mortgage-only defaulters, regardless of their credit scores, showed consistently better performance on auto loans, credit cards and other personal loans. Plus, some employers look at your credit score, which means that it may make it more difficult to land a job.

Finding a new home

Experts estimate that a foreclosure will lead to a dip in your credit score of about or points. Going forward, try to pay all of your bills on time and minimize the amount of money you owe, as these can help boost your credit score.


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  • Potential buyers must show that since the foreclosure they have raised their credit score significantly by paying all bills on time and not taking on too much debt. The time period you have to wait before buying again also depends on your lender. Skip main navigation. Group Copy 9 Created with Sketch.