People who are struggling with debt may be reluctant to file for bankruptcy protection because they are concerned about what it will do to their credit score. Unfortunately, there’s no way around it. Filing for bankruptcy will damage your credit score.

The good news is bankruptcy is a way to hit the reset button on your current financial situation. You can focus on rebuilding your credit after you have completed the bankruptcy process. Repairing the damage may not take as long as you think.

Building credit after a bankruptcy filing

After you have gone through the bankruptcy process, it is not wise to apply for a credit card and to start making charges that you will be unable to pay off. Applying for a debit card that is tied to an existing bank account can help ensure that you don’t overspend while helping you build up your credit.

When you have become comfortable using a debit card, consider applying for a credit card. Initial offers will likely be for cards with low limits and high-interest rates. However, this should not be a significant concern if you are staying within your budget. Treat your credit card like you would cash. Paying off your bills in full every month will ensure that credit remains available without suffering the consequences of a high-interest rate.

In time, you will begin to see your credit score improve, allowing you to receive more favorable loan terms.

If you’re struggling with debt, your credit is already in trouble

If you are missing payments or are struggling to keep up with your financial obligations, your credit score is already suffering. Putting off possible debt relief options is not likely to make things better.

Discussing your situation with a skilled professional sooner than later can help you get on the path to a brighter financial future. The sooner you address your debt issues, the sooner you can begin rebuilding your credit.