Most cards will let you do a soft search to see if you will be accepted without it impacting on your credit score.
Sharing from experiences of dealing with debt
The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.
Bob Marley. http://kallis3.blogs.iva.co.uk
You can get credit builder cards as soon as the completion certificate has been issued --- but acceptance isn't guaranteed ( is it ever?). For these you will be charged a higher interest. After 6 years from the start of the IVA ( assuming it has completed) your credit file will be clear --- but this doesn't always happen as it should and you should check and intervene if required --- and you will be in the same application pool as everyone else. But you will have no history to guide lenders, so start small.
My opinions are merely that .. opinions based on experience. Always seek professional advice.
IVA Completed 23rd July 2013 .... C.C. 10th January 2014 http://foggy.blogs.iva.co.uk
I managed to get credit for a car about 5 months after my completion ( CF are super fast issuing cert) I had to do some chasing on credit file with very kind help from Zebra through here, I then remortgaged last year through Zebra again!
we got a vanquis credit card with a £500 limit while waiting for CC.
Gradually over the following 6-9 months that credit limit was increased. Then a year after completion we applied for a high street card with 0% deals on purchases and transfers.
We are now on the verge of moving and have applied for a mortgage to purchase a large dream family home (approx 15 months after getting our CC). The credit check apps like clearscore and totally money are helpful as they dhow you what you could be eligible for and the rates before you apply. Gives you a %age of the chance of approval based on your creditscore/history. We found it useful.