Flender is a new UK/Irish peer to peer lending platform with a social slant. For a business or consumer to borrow on Flender they first have to successfully raise funds from their friends or customers before opening up the opportunity to the wider public. Flender hopes this will help to reduce defaults, and do it in addition to standard checks run by other P2P lending sites. Current lending opportunities offer interest between 8% and 11%, though borrowers can set their rate as they like. Flender makes its money from a 2.5-4% margin on consumer borrowers or a 3.5% fee to businesses after a successful funding raise; there are no fees for lenders. Read more “Flender Review”
CurrencyFair is a low-cost way to do international money transfers. I first wrote about it when researching how to transfer money to European P2P lending sites. CurrencyFair charge a fee of €3/£2.50 to transfer out money, is generally free to transfer in money, and a 0.25% or 0.3% fee on the currency exchange itself.
CurrencyFair claim that around 10% of their transfers actually beat the interbank rate. This is because the matching is done internally on a peer to peer basis. Here are a couple of tips to help you get the best possible exchange rate when using CurrencyFair with an example I did earlier today. Read more “How to Get a Better Exchange Rate on CurrencyFair”
Property Crowd is an ISA-friendly real estate crowdfunding platform that offers investors a chance to invest in “institutional grade” property deals from £5,000. They’ve been around since 2014, but relaunched with ambitious plans as part of Global Alternatives at the start of 2017. Those ambitious plans (a ‘cross-border property trading exchange’) were what first piqued my interest in Property Crowd, and I set up a call with one of their co-founders Charles Tan to understand more. Read more “Property Crowd Review”
Frazer Fearnhead, founder and CEO of The House Crowd, explains how he turned frustration with the banks into a multi-million pound idea:
The idea for The House Crowd was sparked almost entirely from frustration.
It was 2011, and I’d hit hard times thanks to the 2008 financial crisis. A time when many people were struggling due to the banks’ greed.
I’d left my career as a music industry lawyer to go into property full time. And why not? It stood out as one of the simplest and most rewarding investment options around. However, there was one huge problem: accessibility.
Two years after the financial crisis, there were plenty of opportunities to invest, but it was proving impossible for normal people to receive the finance to get back in the game.
Suddenly the answer was obvious: why not cut out the banks, crowding people together to invest and share the profits? Read more “Frazer Fearnhead on Property Crowdfunding”
Property Partner is the UK’s largest Property Crowdfunding Platform with over £50 million invested to date (versus ~£10 million Property Moose or ~£43 million on The House Crowd). I’ve been investing with them since July 2016: so perfect timing to report on performance amidst the post-Brexit property gloom. I’ve also used The House Crowd and Property Moose, so this review is based on my experience in relation to the others too.
Property Crowdfunding platforms allow investors to buy shares in property investments and benefit from ongoing rental income and house price increases. Properties are held within an SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle) which is a specially created UK LTD company to hold the asset. Read more “Property Partner Review”
Abundance Investment are one of the first established P2P platforms to offer a fully functioning IF ISA. They focus on renewable energy projects like wind turbines or solar farms. Looking down a list of their completed investments, they generally target between 5% and 12%. Read more “Abundance Investment ISA Q&A”
My Old Investment Portfolio
My old stocks and shares portfolio was an unorganised collection of funds that I’d purchased over the past couple of years with no strategy. This was after an older reorganisation of an even less organised, higher-fee collection of funds. Read more “A Low-Fee Stocks & Shares ISA Portfolio”
I first came across CapitalRise when researching Innovative Finance ISAs: they were among the first to offer a working IF ISA product. From what I saw, CapitalRise target property deals in the the high end luxury London market. This is an example of one of their latest investments, a £19million development opposite the Royal Courts of Justice in London:
I reached out to Uma Rajah, the CEO of CapitalRise, with some questions about their platform, the ISA and the investments they offer. Read more “CapitalRise Q&A”
Landbay is a peer-to-peer lending platform which provides loans to buy to let investors. Founded in May 2014, it offers up to 3.75% returns secured against property with an average loan-to-value of 66.73% and a further reserve fund totalling 0.6% of outstanding mortgages. It is definitely a ‘hands off’ platform: you deposit your money, assign it to either a fixed term or tracker product, then just come back whenever you need to withdraw money. Read more “Landbay Review”