Home P2P lending Best P2P Lending Platforms in the United Kingdom

Best P2P Lending Platforms in the United Kingdom

by Evan Carlsen

Interested in P2P lending websites in the UK? not sure which one is right for you? You’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll provide you with a quick overview of the top P2P lending platforms based in the United Kingdom.

P2P lending has been present in the UK for more than a decade. Zopa, which was founded in 2005, is one of the oldest P2P lending platforms in the United Kingdom. It has been in business for nearly a decade and a half.

As investors have begun looking for alternatives to traditional markets, interest in P2P lending in the UK has grown. Today, there are dozens of UK-based lending platforms. There are also many more that serve larger regions of Europe, including the United Kingdom.

We’re here to help you find out which P2P lending platforms in the UK may be right for you. We’ve taken a look at the top platforms in the country. We’ve ranked them based on four primary criteria, as follows:

  • Returns: What returns can investors expect if they invest using a platform? Are there options for both high and low-risk loans? Are there useful tools for tracking overall returns and monitoring performance?
  • Diversification: How many loan originators do the platform use? Is there a variety of different loan types? Does the P2P platform serve multiple countries?
  • Features: Does the P2P lending platform have unique features like an auto-investment tool? A buyback guarantee for loans? Any other special features? How can the money be deposited and withdrawn?
  • User Experience – Is it easy to use the P2P lending website? Is it easy to sign up? Is it simple to buy, sell, and modify loans? Does it load quickly? Is the design user-friendly?

Based on these criteria, we’ve assigned a rank to each of these 17 UK P2P lending platforms. Without further ado, let’s get started and begin exploring each of our top platforms now.

1. FAST INVEST

FAST INVEST takes the top spot in our list of the best P2P lending sites in the UK. This website was first founded in 2015, and it’s quickly grown in popularity with investors. It allows UK residents the option to invest in loans not only in the UK, but in a number of other countries in Europe.

Today, it’s funded more than 40,800,000 EUR of loans and has over 30,000 total investors. FAST INVEST focuses on consumer loans and offers a really good rate of returns. You’ll get between 9-16% on most loans. The average rate of return is 14.30%. It works with 8 third-party loan originators. It offers unique features like an autoinvest tool and a buyback guarantee for most of its loans. With a simple user interface and a low minimum investment of 1 EUR, it’s easy to get started with FAST INVEST.

The two best things about FAST INVEST are fantastic returns and low minimum investment. It’s easy to build a balanced portfolio with this tool, even without a large investment. However, it suffers from a somewhat low loan diversity, and it does not have a secondary loan marketplace.

4.7
EXCELLENT

2. RateSetter

RateSetter is a UK-based P2P lending platform which was first founded in 2010, and it’s built a reputation for offering respectable, safe interest rates on personal, business, and real estate loans. In total, it has more than 80,000 investors from the UK, and has issued more than £3.81 billion in loans in this time period.

Compared to other lending platforms, RateSetter offers a wide variety of safe, diverse loans. However, it has lower average returns. Loans vary from 2.9-5.2% on average, with typical annual returns reaching about 4.6%.

While the returns may be lower, RateSetter loans are also very low-risk. It also has an FCA-authorised program, which is ideal for those who want to invest and earn tax-free returns. You can get started with just £10, so there is a low barrier to entry. Features like auto investing and buyback guarantees help streamline the investing process.

The primary strengths of RateSetter are that it is very safe, and it’s incredibly easy to start investing. On the other hand, it does not offer high returns for investors who don’t mind additional risk. There is also a fee to withdraw your money early from some funds like the 5 Year Market Fund.

4.4
GREAT

3. Property Crowd

Property Crowd is a UK-based online P2P lending platform which was first founded in 2013. It’s a relatively small platform compared to some of the others on this list. It focuses exclusively on real estate loans. Since it was founded in 2013, it has attracted thousands of investors who have invested more than £10 million in the platform.

The average rate of return of Property Crowd is between 8-12%, depending on the loan products you choose. You can invest in diverse real estate loans. This includes residential, commercial and industrial developments. The lineup of loans is always changing. However, it is usually limited to under 10 investment opportunities at any time.

Property Crowd supports the Innovative Finance ISA scheme, which can help you avoid taxes on gains. It also has great features like a secondary loan market and an autoinvest feature.

The best features of Property Crowd are its high-quality bond investment opportunities and its easy-to-use interface. However, it has no buyback guarantee for its loans. You also must invest at least £900 to get started. This means it has one of the highest minimum investments of any platform on our list.

4.3
GREAT

5. Assetz Capital

Assetz Capital was first founded in 2012, and it’s a UK-based online P2P lending platform. It focuses primarily on business loans and real estate loans for small-to-mid-size enterprises (SMEs) in the UK. Currently, it has more than 35,106 active investors. They have invested more than £849.1 million.

This platform offers a wide diversity of loans. Returns on each loan range from 4.1%-12%, based on the credit profile of the borrower. In total, Assetz Capital has returned more than £87 million in interest to investors.

A sophisticated auto investing tool lets you automatically invest in loans that match your criteria, or you can pick-and-choose. Sophisticated profiles of each loan that help you understand the risk and reward for investing. You can also invest in loan products like the Property Secured Account or 90-Day Access Account. These will help you automatically create a balanced portfolio.

The biggest benefits of investing in Assetz Capital are the flexibility of loan products and investment accounts and the low minimum investment. However, its returns are relatively low for most of its loans. There also is no secondary market, so you cannot resell individual loans.

4.2
GREAT

6. ZOPA

ZOPA is the oldest online P2P lending website in the UK. Its stellar reputation means it’s also one of the most popular. Since it was founded in 2005, it has attracted more than £4.5 billion in loans. It currently has more than 60,000 active investors.

Primarily, ZOPA focuses on consumer loans, and it offers a wide variety of returns, depending on the profile of each borrower. Loans range from 2-14%, and its rate of average annual return is 5%. You can invest with as little as £10.

Its features are pretty good, too. While investors are not protected by a buyback guarantee, ZOPA does have a secondary market. This lets you buy and resell loans to adjust your portfolio. It also has an autoinvest feature. ZOPA can also be used as a tax-free ISA. ZOPA is one of the most reputable P2P lending platforms in the UK, with a 9.7 score on TrustPilot.

The best things about ZOPA are its long track record of great returns and its reputation as the oldest and most reputable P2P lending platform in the UK. However, it doesn’t have the best diversity of loans, as it only offers consumer loans. In addition, many other lending platforms can easily beat its ~5% annual return rate.

4.1
GREAT
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6. Octopus Choice

Octopus Choice is one of the best P2P lending platforms in the UK, and was first launched in 2016. Since then, it has quickly attracted borrowers and lenders due to its beautifully-designed, easy-to-use website. It also has mobile apps for iOS and Android. More than 7,700 investors currently use the platform. It has issued more than £300 million in loans.

This P2P lending platform focuses on real estate loans. It offers returns of about 4% on your money. While this is lower than some other platforms, Octopus Choice does provide very safe returns. You can use features like auto-reinvesting interest or depositing it into your bank account. You’ll get your interest each month. You must have a UK bank account to invest, and you can start with just £10.

The best things about Octopus Choice are the very stable returns and the easy-to-use mobile interface. It’s easy to manage your money on the go. On the other hand, its returns are relatively low. It’s best for risk-averse investors who don’t mind choosing a safe, yet low-yielding investment. In addition, its buyback guarantee is also somewhat confusing. You’re not guaranteed to get your interest back if a borrower defaults. 

4
GREAT

7. Rebuildingsociety

Rebuildingsociety is one of the best P2P lending sites in the UK for those who want to invest in small-to-medium-sized businesses. It focuses on business loans to smaller companies. This provides them with the capital they need to grow.

It was founded in 2011. Since then, it has attracted more than 1,613 investors who have invested more than £15.8 million. Because these loans are made to smaller companies, they are somewhat riskier but offer high returns. You can get returns ranging from 11-18% on its loans. The average annual return for most investors is around 7.7%.

Its BuyBack Guarantee ensures you can get compensation if a borrower defaults for 60+ days. An auto-invest feature lets you invest capital and interest monthly into a portfolio of your choosing. A secondary market makes it easy to buy and resell loans, and reconfigure your investment portfolio.

The best features of the Rebuildingsociety platform are its rock-solid BuyBack Guarantee, and its low overall rates and fees. Together, these help your portfolio grow more quickly. On the negative side, though, the website is relatively slow. Also, the tools meant to help you understand your performance are a bit confusing for new investors.

3.9
GOOD

8. Funding Knight

Funding Knight is another one of our top choices for the best UK P2P lending platforms. It has a long history of offering great returns to investors. It’s been around since 2011. Funding Knight, like many other P2P platforms, focuses primarily on business loans for small businesses. However, it has also expanded into green energy loans and commercial property loans.

In total, its investors have made loans of £31,485,000. With fee-free investing and good returns of between 10-13%, this is a good option for those who want to invest in slightly riskier loans but get high returns. The average annual return rate is about 12.6% for investors.

You can easily bid on loans online with its Autobid tool and automate your investments. The Funding Knight marketplace also lets you buy and sell loans on the secondary market. This provides you with more flexibility. In addition, a built-in risk rating system helps you choose which loans have the best balance of risk-to-reward for your investments.

As far as positives go, the best things about Funding Knight are its easy-to-use investor platform and its detailed business profiles. These help you dig into the numbers behind a particular loan, and make sure you invest wisely. As far as negatives go, there are relatively high fees for using the secondary loan marketplace. Also, many of the loans on Funding Knight can be quite risky.

3.8
GOOD

9. Investly UK

Unique among our picks for the best P2P lending platforms in the UK, Investly UK specializes in receivable loans, also known as invoice factoring. Essentially, Investly UK uses P2P investors to purchase invoices from companies to provide them with a short-term loan. When the loan is repaid, investors are credited with interest.

In total, Investly UK has funded invoices worth £38,273,475, and it provides average returns of 10-13%. Most investors get 12.6% annualized returns on their investments. This service is open to EEA residents and E-residents of Estonia.

Interested investors can get started with just £13 and begin earning returns on invoice factoring investments. The average loan length is only about 30 days. However, it can be as short as 15 days or as long as 180 days. This allows you to build a diverse portfolio.

On the positive side, Investly UK offers a unique opportunity to invest in a type of loan that’s quite uncommon in the P2P world. It’s a good way to diversify your portfolio. It’s also extremely simple and easy to use.

However, on the negative side, receivable loans are quite risky. They are often taken by businesses as a last resort. There is also no buyback guarantee. You may be at risk of losing your principal in case of a default.

3.6
GOOD
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10. Ablrate

Founded in 2012, Ablrate specializes in both business loans and real estate loans in the UK, and it’s open to investors from all over the globe, with the exception of the United States. Many lenders have begun using the platform, which has issued more than £49,176,441 in loans.

Depending on the risk profile of each loan, you can expect returns of between 10-15%, with average returns for lenders reaching about 12%. Ablrate also has a very active secondary market, where more than £39 million in loans have been traded. It’s very easy to buy and resell loans with this service.

Registering is free and there are no fees for lending, but the minimum investment is £100, which is higher than some competing platforms. There is also no buyback guarantee of any kind, so investing in Ablrate is riskier than using a platform that covers defaulted loans.

The best features of Ablrate are its great secondary market and its intuitive website and an available mobile app, which lets you manage your lending on the go. However, the loans on Ablrate are mostly quite risky, and there is no guaranteed protection from default. There also is not a huge diversity of loans, with infrequent updating of available loan products.

3.5
GOOD
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11. Funding Circle UK

Funding Circle UK is one of the largest P2P lending platforms in the UK. It was founded in 2010 and has quickly grown into one of the most popular P2P sites in Europe. It’s offered more than £7.5 billion in loans in Europe. More than £5.4 billion in loans have been issued in the UK alone. Over 92,000 investors are currently using this platform.

Funding Circle UK specializes exclusively in business loans in the UK. It has a wide diversity of loans available, from as little as £10K to as high as £500K. Rates are usually between 4-9.5%. You can expect to earn between 5-7% on your portfolio.

This depends on your risk tolerance, of course. An autoinvest feature makes it easy for you to put your portfolio on autopilot. You can choose criteria for your portfolio, and invest automatically, or pick and choose the loans you want.

The biggest benefits of Funding Circle UK are its diversity of business loans and its ease-of-use. The company also has a great track record and is highly reputable. A major drawback, though, is that you must invest at least £1,000 to get started. There is also no buyback guarantee or secondary market, which reduces your flexibility when managing your portfolio.

3.5
GOOD

12. Landlordinvest

As the name may suggest, Landlordinvest connects P2P lenders in the UK with professional landlords. It focuses on providing real estate loans for commercial landlords. It has issued more than £7.8 million in loans since it was founded in 2014.

These property loans are secured by the value of the property in question, making them safer than unsecured loans. Typical investment returns are between 5-12%. You can expect an average return rate of about 11%. Investment interest is deposited into your account monthly, and you can choose to reinvest it if you wish.

The minimum investment for Landlordinvest is £100, which is reasonable but higher than some other platforms. It supports the creation of an Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA) account. This can protect you from taxes on up to £20,000 in annual investments.

The biggest benefits of Landlordinvest are the fact that all loans are secured by brick-and-mortar properties, and that you can get your interest monthly. However, it does have some drawbacks. Property-based lending can be dangerous in an economic downturn. In addition, there is no buyback guarantee in place to help you get your money back if a borrower defaults.

3.4
GOOD

13. Thincats

Thincats has been in operating as a P2P lending platform in the UK since 2011, and it has grown quite a bit since its launch. It focuses on very high-value business loans, ranging from £250K to £15 million. In total, it has issued more than £310 million in loans.

These high-value loans have an average annual rate of return of about 7.38%. While they have a lower overall yield than some competitors, most Thincats loans are quite safe. You can choose to invest in individual loans, or a Thincats Diversified Loan Portfolio. This portfolio will automatically fill with loan products based on your preferences.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, this lending platform has a high minimum investment, thanks to the high value of the loans it offers. You’ll need to pay £1,000 to begin investing. This may put this platform out of reach of some investors.

The best benefits of Thincats are primarily related to the quality of its loans. All loans to businesses are pre-screened and vetted, and you’ll get a list of comprehensive information about the business and the loan to help you make an informed decision. The primary drawbacks of Thincats are the high minimum investment amount, and its relatively high lender fees, compared to some other P2P lending platforms.

3.4
GOOD

14. LendingCrowd

First founded in 2014, LendingCrowd is a P2P lending platform based in Scotland, UK. It offers business loans to British businesses. Loan values can range from between £5K to £500K. Loan terms can be anywhere from 6 months to 5 years.

In total, it has issued nearly £64 million in loans. LendingCrowd has more than 7,000 active investors. These business loans are unsecured, so while they are risky, they do bring large returns. Rates range from between 5.95% to 14.25%, with average returns hovering around 7.63%.

You can start investing with just £20, and tools like auto investing make it easy to quickly build a balanced portfolio. You can pick-and-choose your loans, or use the Income Account or Growth Account tools to create a portfolio and start earning interest in just a few clicks. LendingCrowd also has a P2P lending market, which lets you buy and sell your loans whenever you want.

The best things about LendingCrowd are its easy-to-use deposit and withdrawal features, and the ability to automatically invest in a diversified portfolio. Drawbacks include a flat 1% fee on all money you invest, which is quite high, and the fact that many loans offered on LendingCrowd are quite risky. Auto-investing could lead to a high risk of bad debt and default.

3.3
GOOD

15. Funding Secure

Rounding out the bottom of our list of the best P2P lending platforms in the UK is Funding Secure. This P2P lending site got its start in 2012. To date, it has issued more than £309 million in loans.

Funding Secure is based in the UK, and it has a number of different loan products available, including real estate loans, car loans, and pawnbroker loans. One of the reasons it’s last on our list is that many of these loans are quite risky. You can get between a 10-16% return, with an average of 11.2% annual, but your investments are highly illiquid. There is no buyback guarantee, and it’s often quite difficult to sell your loans on the Funding Secure secondary marketplace.

The biggest benefits of Funding Secure are that it has a huge diversity of loans available, secured by things like classic cars, real estate, luxury jewelry, and other types of property. In addition, it offers good returns and only requires you to pay £25 as a minimum investment.

However, many of these loans are quite risky. Funding Secure does not require any credit checks from borrowers. It looks only at the value of their collateral property. In addition, short-term loans from Funding Secure can have ridiculously high APRs for borrowers, which may increase the risk of default.

3.1
OK

16. Landbay

Uniquely, Landbay is the only platform on this list which lets you invest in residential mortgages. If you’re looking for P2P lending sites in the UK which let you invest in mortgage debt, it’s one of your only options.

Landbay is UK-based and has built up a good reputation among investors since it was founded in 2013. It’s offered more than £360 million in mortgage debt. Because mortgage debt is directly secured by the property that is mortgaged, this is a very safe investment. Correspondingly, though, returns are relatively low. You’ll earn 2.5%-3.5% on your investment. 3% is the average return you can expect.

You can get started by investing as little as £100 on this platform, which is a bit high but not unreasonable. Landbay is a good way to invest in safe, low-risk loans and diversify your portfolio.

The two best things about Landbay are that it’s extremely easy to get started, and you can get monthly returns deposited directly to the account of your choice. There are some negatives, though. First, the returns are, quite frankly, extremely low. You can earn much more on other P2P lending platforms. Second, nearly half of its £500 million in mortgaged properties are in London. A collapse of the London housing market, while unlikely in the near future, could be catastrophic for investors.

3.1
OK

17. Brickowner

Brickowner is based in the UK and offers UK real estate loans, but it’s open to investors all across the globe, except for residents of the USA. Since it was founded in 2016, it has issued more than £10 million in real estate loans.

Since real estate loans are secured by real, brick-and-mortar property, they are usually less risky than other types of unsecured loans. Brickowner offers returns of between 8-20% based on the risk profile of the borrower. If you invest, you can expect an average of 10% returns.

The minimum investment on Brickowner is £100, which is a bit high compared to some of the other picks on this list. It also does not have a huge variety of properties in which you can invest. As of the publication of this list, it only had one property available for funding. You won’t find much diversity when you use Brickowner.

The two best things about Brickowner are that you can invest in real estate, which is less risky than an unsecured loan, and that there are no fees for funding or withdrawing from your account, or for investing. However, the aforementioned lack of diversity is one of its two major drawbacks. There is also no secondary marketplace, so there is no way to resell loans or invest in already-issued loans.

3.1
OK

Explore these P2P lending platforms in the UK – Try out a few and find the right one for you!

 When it comes to P2P lending sites in the UK, you have a ton of options to choose from. So don’t wait. Get started today, and begin exploring these P2P lending platforms. With low investment minimums for most of these platforms, you can give them all a try, and see which ones you like the best.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, meaning, at no extra cost to you, I might earn a commission if you click the links.
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