How to Get Permission From a Trustee to Buy a Home

Even if your financial situation improves after declaring Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must obtain the trustee's approval before making any major purchases until he discharges your petition. It can take up to five years to pay off your bankruptcy plan, and even if the trustee approves the purchase of a home, you might not qualify for financing. However, if you can prove you can afford the home, you might be able to obtain financing in two to three years after filing for bankruptcy.

Gather your financial information. Make notes of your income and any expenses to reference in your letter to the trustee. Call the real estate agent or homeowner to discuss the price of the home.

Use the online mortgage calculator at to estimate your mortgage payment. You can qualify for a Federal Housing Administration loan after one year of making your Chapter 13 plan payments and receiving a letter from the trustee that states the amount you can borrow.

Compose a letter to the trustee. Provide the reason you want to buy a home and any differences in your financial situation that allow you to pay for the home. For example, if you lost a job when you declared Chapter 13 bankruptcy and are now employed, include that in your letter, along with your new wage.

Include printouts of your bank statements and pay stubs with your letter. Mail the letter by certified mail to the trustee.


  • Because state laws differ, consult your attorney before writing your letter to the trustee.


  • Typically, if you have fallen behind on your plan payments, the trustee will not give you permission to buy a home.

    The trustee might request a meeting with you before granting approval for your home purchase.

    Your new loan payments -- if approved -- are separate from your current bankruptcy payment plan. If you default on the new home loan, you will lose the home. You may not file another bankruptcy until the trustee discharges your current bankruptcy.