Reviews & Experiences of Platforms I’ve Invested In
(Reviews listed in alphabetical order)
- AblRate: A smaller P2B (Peer to Business) lender with a specialisation in aviation finance, but lately with more general property loans. Secured lending with gross returns around 10-14%.
- Assetz Capital: Mid-sized P2B lender with a variety of investment products (4 automated, 1 manual) to suit both newbies and more experienced investors.
- BondMason: Unique concept, a P2x investment manager. Bond Mason charge a 1% fee to manage your investments across carefully selected platforms and investments.
- Funding Circle: Large, well-established P2B lender bolstered by the British Government via the British Business Bank and large amounts of institutional capital. Returns after defaults are likely to be above 7% on a well diversified portfolio, though some retail investors have begun to grow dissatisfied when competing against institutional investment and API bidding bots.
- FundingSecure: Secured lending, generally 13% on property with bonuses for larger investment amounts, or 12% on pawn loans. Complex secondary market but (in my opinion) great opportunities for those willing to put some time into due dilligence.
- Growth Street: Growth Street’s borrowing product is something between invoice financing and a short term overdraft. Returns to investors over 6% with a provision fund and 30 day terms.
- Landbay: Offers buy to let mortgages. Returns are lower than other platforms, but that is arguably with a lower percieved risk.
- Lending Works: Offers peer to peer personal loans with a 3-year or 5-year investment product. Like Landbay, returns are lower than other P2P platforms but it aims to make up for this through reduced risk. Lending Works aim to reduce risk not only with a provision fund, but insurance against things like loss of employment and cyber crime too.
- Moneyfarm: Not a peer to peer lending site, but another interesting investment concept that I’ve been trying out. It’s a robo-advisor which helps manage traditional stock market investments via low costs funds. I like it because it’s free of platform fees for the first £10k (normally ~0.3%+), and the customer service is light-years ahead of my existing provider TD Direct Investing.
- MoneyThing: Secured lending with returns between 10% and 13%. In my opinion, a very nice platform to use: current primary and secondary market investment opportunities are laid out clearly on the same page, bank transfers are fast and the customer service is also good!
- Orchard Lending Club: Lower returns of around 4%-4.5% but guaranteed by a buyback guarantee from parent aim listed company Orchard Funding Group PLC.
- Property Moose: a property crowdfunding site that now offers loans and leveraged equity deals as well as its traditional discounted Northern £50k’ers.
- RateSetter: A well established P2P lender with a moving rate of return based on demand and supply.
- RebuildingSociety: Peer to business lender which wants your investment to support small local businesses. Higher annual rates of return (up to 20%!) but you definitely need to invest time in due diligence.
- Unbolted: A smaller secured lending platform with a specialisation in auction related finance. Has a provision fund and additional security on gold backed loans with a gold price hedge. Currently no secondary market, but makes up for this with short terms (generally six months) and a well functioning auto-bidder.
- Zopa: The world’s first peer to peer lender. An innovative platform which pushed boundaries, built its own niche and now plans…. to become a traditional bank. You can still get good returns on Zopa and may sleep easier than putting your money in one of the newer startups without a similar track record.
Yet to write up (when I get time)
- Saving Stream: manual investment on secured property loans, with a pre funding model that lets you get a piece of the best loans without the stress of bidding ‘fastest finger first’. In the past it was all at 1% interest per month, but lately some loans are given at reduced rates.
- Collateral: secured assets lender with 12% returns.
- Property Partner: property crowdfunding site which focuses on large leveraged developments with multiple flats in prime/upcoming areas.
- The House Crowd: another property crowdfunding site, but with plenty of peer to peer loans secured on property too. Higher minimum investment at £1,000 per pop which put me off investing until a really good opportunity came up.
Working Notes: Reviews of Platforms I’ve Not Invested In
- eMoneyUnion: I didn’t decide to invest, but will watch what the team do with their rebrand into justus.co to take advantage of Innovative Finance ISAs.
- The Money Platform: Interesting concept that I couldn’t resist reading up on: a new payday loan peer to peer lender. High minimum investment per loan (£250!) and doubts that returns will outweigh defaults put me off trying it out.
Plans for research articles in the New Year
- Automated peer-to-peer investment aggregators (e.g. InvestUP)
- Peer to Peer Investment Trusts (e.g. P2P Global Investments, Ranger Direct Investments)