May 28, 2024
Travis Palmer

Securing a Business Loan Post-Bankruptcy

Emerging from bankruptcy can be a challenging experience for any business owner. However, it’s possible to rebuild your financial health and secure a business loan even after bankruptcy. By understanding the key steps and demonstrating financial responsibility, you can regain lenders' trust and obtain the funding needed to drive your business forward. Here’s a detailed guide on how to secure a business loan post-bankruptcy.

Understanding Bankruptcy and Its Impact

Types of Bankruptcy

Different types of bankruptcy filings can affect your ability to secure a loan in various ways.

  • Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: This involves liquidating assets to pay off debts and can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years.
  • Chapter 13 Bankruptcy: This allows for a repayment plan over three to five years and can stay on your credit report for up to 7 years.

Interesting Fact: According to the American Bankruptcy Institute, Chapter 7 filings are more common among small businesses due to their straightforward nature.

Impact on Credit Score

Bankruptcy significantly impacts your credit score, making it crucial to take steps to rebuild it.

  • Immediate Drop: Credit scores can drop by 100-200 points post-bankruptcy.
  • Long-Term Effects: The impact lessens over time with responsible financial behavior.

Interesting Fact: Experian reports that it can take up to 10 years to fully recover from bankruptcy, but positive actions can start improving your score much sooner.

Steps to Rebuild Your Credit

1. Establish a Strong Personal Credit History

Rebuilding your personal credit is essential as lenders often review personal credit when considering business loan applications.

  • Timely Payments: Ensure all bills, including utilities and rent, are paid on time.
  • Secured Credit Cards: Use a secured credit card to build or rebuild credit responsibly.
  • Monitor Credit Reports: Regularly check your credit reports for errors and dispute inaccuracies.

Interesting Fact: According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, using a secured credit card can help rebuild your credit score within six months of responsible use.

2. Build Business Credit

Separating your personal and business finances can help rebuild your business credit profile.

  • Register Your Business: Ensure your business is properly registered and has an EIN.
  • Open Business Accounts: Use business bank accounts and credit cards.
  • Work with Vendors: Establish credit lines with vendors that report payments to business credit bureaus.

Interesting Fact: According to Dun & Bradstreet, having a business credit score above 80 can significantly improve your chances of securing a loan.

3. Create a Solid Business Plan

A detailed business plan can demonstrate to lenders that you have a clear strategy for success.

  • Executive Summary: Outline your business’s goals and mission.
  • Market Analysis: Provide insights into your industry and target market.
  • Financial Projections: Include revenue, expense, and cash flow projections.

Interesting Fact: Businesses with a solid business plan are twice as likely to secure funding, according to the SBA.

Finding the Right Lenders

1. Traditional Banks

Traditional banks may have stricter requirements, but it’s still worth exploring if you have a strong business plan and improving credit scores.

  • Pros: Competitive interest rates, longer terms.
  • Cons: Stringent approval process, high credit requirements.

Interesting Fact: According to the Federal Reserve, only 23% of small businesses apply for loans from traditional banks post-bankruptcy due to stringent criteria.

2. Online Lenders

Online lenders offer more flexibility and faster approval processes, making them a viable option post-bankruptcy.

  • Pros: Quick approval, flexible requirements.
  • Cons: Higher interest rates, shorter terms.

Interesting Fact: The online lending market is growing rapidly, with many small businesses turning to these lenders for post-bankruptcy financing.

3. Credit Unions

Credit unions may offer more personalized service and flexibility compared to traditional banks.

  • Pros: Lower interest rates, personalized service.
  • Cons: Membership requirements, limited availability.

Interesting Fact: Credit unions approved 40% of small business loan applications in 2020, according to the National Credit Union Administration.

4. Alternative Lenders

Alternative lenders, such as those available through Approvd, specialize in providing funding to businesses with less-than-perfect credit histories.

  • Pros: Flexible terms, quick approval.
  • Cons: Higher interest rates, potential fees.
  • Why Approvd: Approvd connects you with a network of alternative lenders who understand your unique situation and can offer tailored financing solutions.

Interesting Fact: Alternative lenders are often more willing to work with businesses post-bankruptcy, providing a crucial lifeline for rebuilding financial health.

Improving Your Chances of Approval

1. Provide Collateral

Offering collateral can reduce the risk for lenders and improve your chances of loan approval.

  • Types of Collateral: Equipment, real estate, inventory, or accounts receivable.
  • Benefits: Lower interest rates, higher approval likelihood.

2. Demonstrate Cash Flow

Showcasing stable and predictable cash flow can reassure lenders of your ability to repay the loan.

  • Financial Statements: Provide recent profit and loss statements and cash flow statements.
  • Revenue Streams: Highlight diverse and consistent revenue sources.

3. Seek Smaller Loans

Applying for smaller loan amounts can improve your approval chances as they pose less risk to lenders.

  • Incremental Borrowing: Start with smaller loans and gradually increase as you build credit and demonstrate repayment ability.
  • Manageable Payments: Smaller loans come with lower monthly payments, making them easier to manage.


Securing a business loan post-bankruptcy requires strategic planning, rebuilding your credit, and finding the right lender. By demonstrating financial responsibility, presenting a solid business plan, and leveraging alternative lending options like those available through Approvd, you can regain lenders' trust and secure the funding needed to grow your business.

Ready to explore your post-bankruptcy loan options? Get offers today! Fill out an application with Approvd and discover the best funding solutions for your business. For more business, credit, and financial insights, visit our Approvd blog page.

About the Author

With over 20 years of experience in the business loan marketplace at Approvd, our expert has helped countless small business owners navigate the complexities of securing the right funding. Passionate about empowering entrepreneurs, our expert combines industry knowledge with a deep understanding of the challenges faced by small businesses today.

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