The worldwide markets are getting more turbulent, and many investors in Australia are looking for alternatives to traditional financial instruments – such as P2P lending platforms. But if you’re in Australia, how can you know which P2P lending platforms are reliable, trustworthy, and provide you with plenty of options for investing your money?
Previously, we’ve looked at P2P lending platforms in the UK and Europe. But in this article, we’ll take a look at the best Australian P2P lending platforms. There are quite a few platforms that are tailor-made for Australian P2P investors. We’ll take a look at these lending platforms. We’ll also look at some other top, non-Australian platforms that are available worldwide.
The history of P2P lending sites in Australia is shorter than you may think. The first Australian-based P2P site, SocietyOne, was first launched in 2012. Since then, though, the marketplace has grown a bit more crowded. That’s why we’ve put together this list of the best P2P lending platforms in Australia.
As always, we rank our picks based on a few different criteria. The four main things we look at are:
- Returns – The overall average return rate that investors can expect from particular service
- Diversification – The diversity of loan providers, types, and amounts that P2P investors can choose from when investing their money
- Features – Unique features like an auto-invest tool, pre-selected portfolios, a secondary market, low minimum investment amount, and so on
- Interface – This includes the ease-of-use and simplicity of depositing/withdrawing money, purchasing loans and investing, and tracking your performance over time, among other factors
Ready to get started? Read on, and get an overview of the best P2P lending platforms in Australia.
Marketlend is based in Australia. It was first founded in 2014. Since then, it has attracted a lot of investors. It has become quite popular with Australians who are seeking alternative investment opportunities. It is also available for global investors who would like exposure to Oceania-based investments.
It has more than 718 investors, who have contributed more than AUD 79,700,000 in loans. Marketlend provides four basic loan types. These are Supply Chain Finance, Debtor Finance, Line of Credit, and UnLock (B2B Loans). This gives investors a wide range of products in which to invest.
The returns are great, too. You can get up to 14.4% (uninsured loans) and 9.6% (insured loans). The average annual return rate of about 11.34%. The company offers both insured loans, which are covered if the borrower defaults, as well as uninsured loans. Uninsured loans are riskier by nature. However, they offer higher returns.
The minimum investment at Marketlend is AUD 100. This is a bit high compared to some of the other picks on this list. It also has an auto-invest feature. This lets you invest your cash automatically into loans of your choice. It has a secondary market where you can buy and sell loans. Marketlend has no buy-back guarantee. Instead, it has a provision fund that is used to cover losses from unpaid loans.
The two best things about Marketlend are its good returns and its relatively wide variety of loans. The two worst things about this platform are the fact that not all loans are protected by the provision fund and its high minimum investment.
2. Ratesetter AUS
Ratesetter was first founded in Australia in 2014. Since it started, it has become very popular with Australian investors. It has a total of more than 15,000 investors. By our reckoning, this makes it the largest Australian-based P2P investment platform. Its investors have funded more than AUD 500 million in loans.
Return rates are low but consistent. This is due to the high quality of the loans offered by Ratesetter. It offers consumer, business, and real estate loans. The return rate varies by product. However, the average rate of return is between 4%-7.8%. This is low but consistent. Ratesetter loans seem to be very safe, with low default rates.
It’s also easy to get started with Ratesetter due to its low AUD 10 minimum investment. Other great features of this platform include an easy-to-use autoinvest feature and a provision fund. This fund is intended to help cover loans if borrowers default. There is no secondary market, though.
Ratesetter is easy to use. It has a simple user interface that makes investing, checking your investments, and withdrawing money a breeze. Even if you are a new investor, you will have an easy time using this Australian P2P lending platform.
The two best things about Ratesetter AUS are its low minimum investment and its broad portfolio of loans. The two worst things about this platform are its relatively low returns and the fact that you cannot buy and sell loans on any kind of secondary market.
3. Thincats AUS
Thincats AUS is the Australian branch of ThinCats, a UK-based FinTech company. Thincats AUS was first founded in Australia in 2014. It has attracted more than AUD 16,000,000 in loans since it first launched.
Thincats AUS primarily focuses on business loans. It has a portfolio of high-risk, high-reward loans that offer an average annual return rate of 15.10%. It may not be the best choice if you are looking for the safest P2P lending sites in Australia. However, it certainly is lucrative if you have some appetite for risk.
However, the minimum investment is quite high. It may be out of reach for many investors. You’ll have to pay $1,000 to invest with Thincats AUS. Thincats also does not have many other features. There is no buyback guarantee. You cannot buy and sell loans on a secondary market.
It currently does not even offer any kind of autoinvest feature. You have to invest in loans manually. That is not too time-consuming. However, it would be nice if there was an automated investment tool. Most modern P2P lending platforms offer this.
The two best things about Thincats are its high returns and its wide diversity of business loans. The two worst things are its very high, $1,000 investment minimum, and the fact that it lacks most of the modern features we’ve come to expect from P2P lending platforms.
Bigstone is probably the best P2P lending platform in Australia if you are a high-roller and interested in investing a lot (we mean a lot) of money. It was first founded in 2014. It offers online asset and equipment financing.
The most notable thing about Bigstone is that you must be a “wholesale client” under the provisions of the Corporations Act 2001. That means you must meet one of the following criteria:
- Invest at least AUD 500,000
- Have net assets of AUD 2.5 million
- Earn a gross income of more than AUD 250,000 for 2 years
- Be a professional investor for an investment organization
- Be investing on behalf of a business with 20+ employees (100+ if engaged in the manufacture of goods)
Bigstone does provide very reliable returns of an average of about 9% for investors. It’s also very easy to use. It uses a fund-based structure and supports automatic investing. If you have the cash for it, it’s one of the best P2P lending platforms in Australia. That’s a big “if,” though, since you will need to invest AUD 500K to get started.
The best things about Bigstone are its consistent returns and high-quality loans. The two worst things are its absurdly-high minimum investment and its lack of features like a secondary marketplace or buyback guarantee.
Wisr was first founded in 2014, and it’s one of Australia’s leading FinTech platforms for P2P lending. Since it was first founded, it has provided nearly AUD 87 million in loans. Primarily, Wisr focuses on unsecured consumer loans. These loans have a relatively high risk, but also a high reward.
Average annual returns for Wisr are about 7.70%, which is pretty decent considering the high quality of most of its loans. Wisr uses a diversified, fund-based model. That means that your investment is spread across hundreds of loans. It’s not invested in any single loan. An auto-invest feature makes it very easy to put your investments on autopilot.
Overall, the Wisr platform is really good. It’s easy to use and provides pretty good returns. Also, the Loan Investment Reserve Account system means you pay a percentage into a fund that helps cover defaulted loans. This protects your investment.
The minimum investment is steep, though. You’ll need to invest at least AUD 10,000 to get started. This is likely too much for most people who are beginning to explore Australian P2P lending websites.
The two best things about Wisr are its high-quality loans, which offer good returns, and its diversified, fund-based model that helps protect your investment. The two worst things about it are its high initial investment, and the long withdrawal time – it takes 36 months to recover your entire investment if you pull your cash out.
SocietyOne is the oldest Australian P2P lending platform. It was founded in 2012, and it is very well-regarded by borrowers and investors. It has attracted more than AUD 600 million in investments since it first was founded seven years ago.
SocietyOne offers both consumer and business loans. This provides you with some good loan diversification. Depending on the loans you choose, you will get between a 4.5%-15.5% return on your investment. Average annual returns are about 7% for a balanced portfolio.
You do not own personal loans directly with SocietyOne, unlike some other Australian P2P investing companies. Instead, you invest in the SocietyOne Trust, which allows you to spread your investment through a wide variety of loans.
However, SocietyOne is only available for certified wholesale clients, like Bigstone. You must meet the same requirements of investing $500,000, a gross income of AUD 250,000 for 2 years, or assets of AUD 2.5 million. You must upload a certificate from an accountant qualifying you as a wholesale client to get started.
The best things about SocietyOne are its good returns and its long history of providing clients with safe, lucrative investments. The two worst things about it are the fact that you must be a wholesale client, and the difficult registration and sign-up process.
7. Harmoney AUS
Harmoney AUS is the Australian branch of Harmoney, which operates in both Australia and New Zealand. It was founded in 2015. It offers great returns and has issued more than AUD 90 million in loans. Primarily, it focuses on consumer loans in Australia, and it also has loans in New Zealand.
The returns offered by Harmoney are between 7%-28%, with average returns coming in at 11% for investors. This sounds pretty good, but there’s a pretty big catch. Harmoney AUS only accepts investors who can invest a minimum of AUD 2 million. That means it’s going to be impossible for most P2P investors to qualify and use this platform.
If you do, though, you’ll be able to get great returns on your investment. The Harmoney AUS website is very easy to use and provides you with plenty of options for diversifying your loans.
The two best things about Harmoney AUS are its great UI and fantastic returns. The two worst things are its AUD 2 million minimum investment, and relatively low diversity of loans.
Other top global platforms available in Australia
Not all of the best P2P lending platforms in Australia are based in Australia! There are also quite a few global P2P lending websites that are accessible to investors in Australia and Oceania.
These platforms do not originate from Australia but are completely open to investors from the area. This means they are a good choice if you would like to diversify your investment portfolio. Get all the details now, as we take a look at some of the top global P2P lending platforms available in Australia.
Mintos is based in Latvia and was founded in 2015. Since then, it’s become one of the best worldwide P2P lending platforms. It has attracted more than 163,000 investors who have poured more than 2.8 billion EUR into the platform.
Mintos has a wide variety of loans available in quite a few different countries. This includes Business, consumer, car, pawnbroking and receivables loans. This provides you with plenty of diversity. Return rates range from 5.5%-20% and average 12.23%. The minimum investment is only €10. Mintos also has good features like autoinvesting, a buyback guarantee, and a secondary market where you can buy and sell loans.
The best thing about Mintos is its huge variety of lucrative loans. The worst thing is that the website can occasionally suffer from performance issues.
Check out the best Australian P2P lending platforms now!
Whether you choose an Australian-based lending platform or one of our global picks, this list is sure to help you find new investment opportunities. So don’t wait. If you are looking for an alternative to traditional investing, this list is sure to help. Take a look at our top picks now, and you can start investing today.