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Home Loans 101: Bankruptcy & Foreclosure Waiting Periods

Shawn Von Talge


Many individuals and families across the United States lost their homes to foreclosure due to the financial crisis that occurred in the late 2000s. This unfortunate reality can be seen in the chart below, which shows the annual number of foreclosures in the U.S. from 2006 to 2014:
RealtyTrac Foreclosure Chart

Source: RealtyTrac® 2014 Year-End U.S. Foreclosure Market Report

In connection with this, many of these homeowners were also forced to file for bankruptcy protection. Per a U.S. Court website there were approximately 6.5 million “non-business” bankruptcy filings from 2009 to 2013.

My point in mentioning the data above is that many of the individuals and families forced into foreclosure and/or bankruptcy during the financial crisis are becoming eligible to use certain loan programs again. With this in mind, the bankruptcy and foreclosure waiting periods for conventional, FHA, VA, and USDA loans, respectively, are shown in the table below.

[table id=5 /]

*exceptions apply

Bankruptcy Waiting PeriodTo further complicate matters, there are a variety of things that can impact whether the waiting periods shown above actually apply in a given scenario. These things include, but are not limited to, each of the following:

▸ If you had a foreclosure, whether or not there were “extenuating circumstances” involved with it

▸ If you filed for bankruptcy, whether or not your home was included

▸ Whether you filed a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

These are just a few examples of things that can ultimately determine whether the aforementioned waiting periods are applicable in your specific loan situation. As such, if you’ve had a bankruptcy or foreclosure in the past it’s advisable to seek the guidance of a mortgage professional if/when you decide to purchase a home again.

Thanks as always for reading!

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