Renting a Car after Bankruptcy
Whether you've already filed your bankruptcy petition or you’re still considering whether bankruptcy is the right choice for your finances, you've probably wondered about what might happen to you in your post-bankruptcy life. One common question bankruptcy filers have is about renting a car after bankruptcy: Can it be done? And if so, how?
What You Need to Rent a Car after Bankruptcy
Car rental can be an important part of traveling or getting around for special occasions, particularly if you sold your car as part of the bankruptcy process. In order to be able to rent a car after bankruptcy, you need to consider the following.
- Credit or debit cards: Most car rental companies take reservations only on credit or debit cards, and many make paying in cash difficult. This means that, as part of your post-bankruptcy life, you may need to take out the plastic occasionally, even if it's a debit card tied to your checking account.
- Rebuilding credit: But, as you may already know, applying for and getting a credit card after bankruptcy can be a tricky matter. The credit card options for those just recovering from bankruptcy may be unattractive, with high interest rates and/or costly monthly or annual fees.
- Taking your time: Because of the difficulty bankruptcy filers can have in getting a credit card in their post-bankruptcy lives, it may be in your best interest to be patient. In the first few months following your filing, the credit card offers you qualify for probably won’t be great, and may cost more money than they’re worth. But, with the passage of time (and reestablishment of healthy financial habits), you’ll likely qualify for better cards. However, most car rentals will treat debit the same as credit.
Can Renting a Car after Bankruptcy Help Me?
If you get to the point in your bankruptcy recovery that you have a credit card and decide to rent a car, making your payments on time can, like all positive credit actions, help you rebuild your credit in your post-bankruptcy life.
One important thing to remember is that, even though the idea of taking on credit cards after filing for bankruptcy may seem daunting or ill-advised, having a credit card may be one way to rebuild your credit profile – as long as you pay your bills on time and in full each month.
Learn More about Life after Bankruptcy from an Attorney Near You
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