The short answer to that question is yes. It really doesn’t matter whether the car is repossessed by being towed out of your driveway in the middle of the night, or whether you voluntarily and cooperatively turn over the car to the lender because you couldn’t afford to make the payment.
If the lender sells your vehicle for less than you owe on it, you will be responsible legally for paying the difference (otherwise known as a deficiency). This is a little less of a problem in recent months due to car shortages, there tends to be more equity in vehicles than there has been in the past, meaning the lender in many cases can sell the car for more than you owe on it. The good news is that filing for bankruptcy will discharge a deficiency judgment against you.
It is recommended to never trade in a vehicle with negative equity and add it to your current vehicle loan. This forces you as the borrower to be in a position where you cannot sell it for more than you owe on it. Typically, that is usually accompanied with a high monthly payment. It also puts you in a position where if the car has mechanical issues it makes it even harder to get rid of it because you can’t break even if you sell it.
If you do have any questions about prior vehicle repossessions or if you are considering turning in your car, feel free to contact our office to discuss your options.
Many people ask whether they will be able to rent a home or apartment after filing for bankruptcy. The answer to that question is yes. It’s a common requirement to fill out an application with the property manager and have them run your credit history.
Within a short period of time after receiving your discharge your credit score should continue to improve if you are making timely payments to your obligations such as your car payment. You also have more disposable income after filing your bankruptcy case because you will be debt free. Landlords are more likely to have an issue with prior evictions than a bankruptcy filing.
A few things can help you during the application process to help assure the landlord you would not be at risk for default. If you have lived in your existing rental and have paid on time for at least a year that’s helpful. Even better if you can use your current landlord as reference. Additionally, if you have had a consistent job history with the same employer that is also helpful with no gaps of unemployment.
If you have a lower credit score you may be required to pay a higher security deposit or have a co-signor on the lease. Typically, rent does increase each year so keep that in mind when you begin to rent to make sure it’s affordable long term. Ask what items are included in the rent such as water, cable or trash or if that and additional cost. Having a roommate at least temporarily could help defray some of the cost as well.