When you’re able to keep your home through a bankruptcy, you might be concerned about how much your payments are on it. For some, there comes a time when refinancing the mortgage becomes necessary. In these cases, you should understand your loan type and the chapter under which you file bankruptcy.

As a general guideline, you will wait longer to be able to refinance if you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy than a Chapter 13. Certain loan types also have longer waiting periods than others.

Loans backed by the government, such as FHA and VA loans have a waiting period of two years after the discharge of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. A person filing for Chapter 13 may qualify for a government-backed mortgage one year after the start of the payout period.

Conventional loans have a waiting period of four years after the discharge of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You have a two-year waiting period for a conventional mortgage refinance if your Chapter 13 bankruptcy was discharged, but four years if it was dismissed.

It is sometimes possible to reduce these waiting periods. If you can’t make that happen, you can always use the waiting period to start to rebuild your credit, which could result in better financing options for you.

People who are considering bankruptcy and those who have an active case should evaluate their options and learn how their case can affect their ability to finance. Just be wary of lenders who offer refinance options faster than the normal guidelines. They are usually subprime lenders who will have higher costs than the options you’ll have if you sit out through the waiting period.