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Technically, yes, as we allow you to earn interest through lending your money directly to borrowers through our platform. With our lending partners, we take care of everything – from finding and approving loans to managing them day-to-day and to collecting and distributing interest to you. Loanpad is easy to use, offers inflation-busting returns and is designed to minimise risk to your money.
There are only two differences: how quickly you can take out your money and how much interest you receive.
Our Classic account pays -% interest and you can withdraw money any time. Our Premium account pays -% interest and you have to give 60 days’ notice to take out your money (or pay an early access fee of up to 1% of the amount you’re withdrawing). Both accounts are available as an ISA, and withdrawals are always subject to funds being available. Interest rates may change.
We make loans to carefully vetted borrowers (companies or individuals) looking for short-term (3 to 18 months) property development, bridging or business funding. All our loans are shared with established lending companies (lending partners) and supported by property, which means we have tangible security to sell if we need to recover the loan and repay our investors.
Your money is spread across all the loans in our portfolio at any one time, and we redistribute (or rediversify) your money daily – this is one of the ways we reduce your risk – see others.
Your money is spread over loans that are shared between our investors and experienced lending partners who take on the higher risk part of each loan for a higher rate of interest. To reduce the risk to you, we limit Loanpad investors’ share of every loan to between 5% and 50% of the total property value - and your money will be the first to be repaid if any borrower defaults on their loan. Read more about how we protect your money.
No, we don’t. We make money by taking a small margin from the interest borrowers pay on their loans. In other words, we earn money when you earn money. The only fee you might pay is to have early access to money in your Premium account.
We offer a combination of elements you won’t find on any other lending platform.
Daily interest which you can reinvest daily or withdraw monthly.
Unique protection of your investments through loan-sharing, daily diversification, our interest cover fund and more. Simplicity for you – you can use our intuitive online platform to check your interest and our portfolio of loans daily, and you can move money between your accounts as much as you want.
If you do not meet the second criteria and would still like to open a Loanpad account, please contact email@example.com.
The first step is to sign up and give us your basic details – name, address, date of birth and so on. To keep things simple, we’ll do online ID and background checks and only ask you for documents if we need more information.
Once you’re registered, you can open a cash account – this is a holding account where you first put money before moving it into an interest-earning Classic or Premium lending account.
You put money into your Loanpad cash account by making a transfer from the bank account you registered when you signed up. You’ll find our bank details and your personal reference number in the ‘Cashier’ section of your dashboard. As soon as your money arrives in your cash account, you can move it into an interest-earning account.
You can do this in two ways:
You’ll find the details to arrange both of these in the ‘Cashier’ section of your dashboard.
No, you can only move money into Loanpad through a bank transfer or standing order.
You can open both accounts with just £10 – and add to this in multiples of £10 – going up to £20,000 in a Classic account and £250,000 in our Premium account. (Please note: these maximum amounts may change.)
By moving money from your cash account into either a Classic or Premium account – or into both. Money in these accounts will earn daily interest right away, and this is paid into your cash account each day. You can either leave it there, reinvest it in one of your lending accounts, or withdraw it.
Choosing to reinvest means you’ll be earning compound interest (earning interest on interest), which is a powerful way to grow your initial investment much more quickly.
Interest is paid daily into your cash account. You can set this to automatically reinvest (auto lend) or to be paid into your bank account once a month (auto withdraw). You’ll find these settings under the ‘Preferences’ tab on your dashboard.
Auto lend – to maximise your returns just choose the account you want your cash balance to be reinvested in. Please bear in mind that transfers to your Classic or Premium account happen in multiples of £10, so your cash balance will only be reinvested once it reaches this amount.
Auto withdraw – to take your interest as income, choose the date you’d like your cash balance to be transferred to your bank account each month. You can only change your auto withdrawal date once every 30 days.
When you put money into your cash account from one of your lending accounts, we turn off your interest preferences to stop these settings applying to this additional money, which you may not want. Just go into ‘Preferences’ and turn back on the settings if this happens.
Yes, rates could go up or down. We monitor interest rates against the performance of the loans on our portfolio. If our rates do change, we’ll let you know in advance and clearly explain the reason for the change.
This depends on your personal situation – it’s your responsibility to pay any tax you owe on interest you receive through Loanpad. We don’t deduct tax from your interest or any other money we pay to you. If you have questions about paying tax, it’s best to get advice from an independent financial or tax advisor.
All of our accounts are available as innovative finance ISAs (IFISA), so if you’re eligible you could enjoy tax-free interest in this way.
In theory, no – and you can keep money in all three types of account. But there could be a short delay in moving money from your cash account to your lending accounts if there aren’t enough loans to invest in. It could also take a little longer to move money from your lending accounts to your cash account if we don’t have enough ‘free’ money in the system (either from new investors or repaid loans).
You can leave your money in Loanpad for any length of time – it’s completely flexible. If you ask to withdraw money from your cash account, we will aim to process this within one business day, although from time to time it may take up to 3 business days.
You must have money in your cash account in order to withdraw it to your bank account. This means you may have to transfer money from a lending account to your cash account first.*
*Important: We can’t guarantee being able to move or release your money from your lending accounts immediately, as this depends on having available funds from loan repayments and new investments. From time to time, there may be delays in moving or withdrawing your money, so it’s important that you don’t treat your Loanpad account like an easy access bank account.
No – we spread all investors’ money across our entire portfolio of loans daily. This is to protect your money and keep things simple and easy for you. Details of all loans are available on the platform (updated daily) and you can download a copy any time.
You can check the ‘My account’ section of your dashboard any time to see the investment amount and interest you’re earning. You can also download an income statement for whatever period of time you specify.
You can also review the Loanpad portfolio of loans whenever you want – we update the details of our loans daily. We believe in total transparency, so if you don’t see the information you’re looking for, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
An ISA, or Individual Savings Account, is a type of account that allows you to take income and profits free of income and capital gains tax.
Each tax year, the UK government allows people who meet certain conditions to put a certain amount of their savings into ISAs. For the current tax year, the annual ISA allowance is £20,000.
The tax year begins on 6 April each year and ends on 5 April (inclusive) of the following year.
There are four main types of ISA available in the UK:
Loanpad offers an innovative finance ISA, which we call the Loanpad ISA.
This type of ISA allows the interest you make through the loans on our platform to be exempt from tax (income and capital gains). The Loanpad ISA is a flexible ISA, so you can withdraw money and replace it in the same tax year without the replacement counting towards your yearly ISA allowance.
You must be 18 or older and a UK resident (or in the diplomatic or overseas civil service or the partner of someone who is). You can only open one IFISA each tax year, and your Loanpad ISA must be within your £20,000 ISA allowance.
No, only for yourself.
As many as you like. You can split your yearly allowance between different types of ISAs, but you can only open one ISA of each type in each tax year.
This only applies to new money you’re investing in ISAs. For example, you can move ISAs opened in previous years into an IFISA and also invest new funds in the same or a different IFISA – all in the same tax year.
Please see our IFISA investor key information document for more information.
You can put up to £20,000 into ISAs in the 2019/20 tax year. You can invest this in one type of ISA or spread it among different types, as long as you don’t invest more than £20,000.
This allowance doesn’t roll over – it starts again for each tax year. The amount may change in future - see https://www.gov.uk/individual-savings-accounts/overview for the latest information.
No – only the money you originally invest in ISAs.
If you try to put more than your yearly allowance into your Loanpad ISA, we’ll pause the transfer and ask you to reconsider how much you want to invest.
Our calculations are based on the amount you’ve invested in Loanpad ISAs, so it’s important to keep track of your total ISA investments each tax year. If you think you’ve gone over the allowance, let us know straight away. You should also let HMRC know using the ISA helpline: 0300 200 3312.
You may have the pay tax on the interest you earn on the amount over the limit, and also possibly pay a fine to HMRC.
Your application covers both current and future tax years, as long as you invest in your Loanpad ISA each year. If you miss a year, the next time you want to put money into your ISA, you’ll have to fill in a new application form.
ISAs can be a great way to earn tax-free interest. But you should always make sure you’re investing in line with the government requirements for your own personal tax circumstances.
For the most part, in exactly the same way as our standard Classic and Premium accounts – you just enjoy tax-free interest. There are differences in how you put money into your Loanpad ISA and how you take it out. Please see the FAQs about this below.
Like all our accounts, you start by opening a Loanpad cash account. You can then open an ISA application by clicking on the ISA button on your dashboard.
Yes. As long as you have money in a standard cash account, you can move this to an ISA cash account and from there to an ISA Classic or Premium account to start earning interest.
There are three ways to do this.
1. By putting money in your ISA cash account
Once you’ve moved money into your Loanpad standard cash account from your registered bank account, you can make a transfer from this account to your ISA cash account in the ‘Cashier’ section of your dashboard. You can then start earning interest in a Classic or Premium ISA account by moving in multiples of £10, starting with just £10.
2. By transferring a current tax year ISA from another ISA manager
You can transfer as many existing ISAs to Loanpad as you like – money you’ve invested in any type of ISA in the current tax year. We won’t charge for this, although your other ISA manager may.
There are rules in place around these types of ISA transfers. One is that the transfer must be made directly between ISA managers – you can’t withdraw the money and make the transfer yourself.
3. By transferring ISAs from previous years
You can transfer as many ISAs (of any type) from previous tax years as you like – and up to any amount. Like with existing year transfers, this must take place between ISA managers - you can’t make the transfer yourself. Your previous ISA manager may charge for the transfer.
The minimum amount for all ISA transfers into Loanpad is £100.
You may be trying to move more money than you have in your standard cash account or have gone over your ISA allowance.
Please change the amount you’re trying to transfer and try again. If you’re still having problems, please open up a live chat or email us at email@example.com.
Your ISA dashboard shows how much you have left from the current year’s allowance. But this only takes your Loanpad ISAs into account, not any ISAs you may have opened with other companies. So, ultimately, it’s down to you to keep tabs on how much of your allowance you have left to invest.
No, you have to transfer the money into your standard cash account and move it from there into your ISA cash account, using the ‘Cashier’ section of your dashboard.
This is a holding account where your cash sits before you can invest it in our ISA Classic and Premium lending accounts. You earn interest only on money in ISA Classic and Premium accounts.
No, only on investments. To start earning interest, simply transfer your money into an ISA Classic or Premium account.
These work exactly like our non-ISA Classic and Premium accounts. You earn interest every day in both accounts: -% in the Classic and -% in the Premium account. You can withdraw money without charge daily from your Classic account, while you have to give 60 days’ notice (or pay an early access fee) to withdraw money from a Premium account. Withdrawing money from both accounts is subject to enough funds being available on the platform (i.e. not tied up in loans).
Once you have money in your ISA cash account, you start earning interest by moving it into your Classic and/or Premium lending accounts.
Yes. We’ve designed Loanpad to give you the best possible return on your investments and flexibility with your money.
These features work exactly the same way as in our standard accounts. Interest is paid daily into your cash account. You can set this to automatically reinvest (auto lend) or to be paid into your bank account once a month (auto withdraw). You’ll find these settings under the ‘Preferences’ tab on your dashboard.
You can do this any time, as long as your money hasn’t been allocated to a borrower or already loaned. The first step is to transfer your money from your Classic or Premium ISA account (or both) into your ISA cash account.
Important: We can’t guarantee being able to release your money immediately, as this depends on having available funds from loan repayments and new investments. From time to time, there may be delays in withdrawing your money.
Once your money is in your ISA cash account, you can move it to your standard cash account and from there to your registered bank account. ISA funds in your standard cash account are no longer technically in an ISA wrapper, and you may have to pay income tax on any subsequent interest.
Under the flexible ISA rules, you can replace the money you’ve withdrawn from your ISA without this adding to your ISA allowance, as long as you do this in the same tax year.
Not unless you’re making an early withdrawal from your ISA Premium account. In this case you may be charged up to 1% of the amount you’re withdrawing. Please see our ISA terms and conditions for more details.
Yes. Under the flexible ISA rules, you can replace the money you’ve withdrawn from your ISA without this adding to your ISA allowance, as long as you do this in the same tax year.
No. The money in your ISA cash account is still in an ISA but isn’t earning interest. It’s only seen as a withdrawal (no longer in an ISA) when you move money from your ISA cash account to your standard cash account.
No, transfers from standard lending accounts to ISA lending accounts have to go through the cash holding accounts. So you’d need to move the amount you want to transfer from your standard Classic or Premium account into your non-ISA cash account, then from there to your ISA cash account and into an ISA Classic or Premium account. You can do this all with a few clicks in the ‘Cashier’ section of your dashboard.
Yes, you can do this any time. Transfers must be made directly between ISA managers – you can’t withdraw the money and make the transfer yourself.
All you need to do is print, complete and send us a Transfer Authority Form for each transfer you want to make – you’ll find this in the ‘Cashier’ part of your ISA dashboard. We’ll then contact your old ISA manager to handle the transfer directly. Your previous ISA manager may charge a fee for the transfer.
There are differences between transferring ISA money you’ve invested in the current tax year and ISA investments from previous tax years. There are also differences between the types of ISA you’re transferring, and there may be certain restrictions that affect how long the transfer takes. Having said this, we aim to complete all transfers within 30 calendar days.
Please see the IFISA investor key information document for more.
No, but your existing ISA manager might.
Of course. You’ll need to contact your new ISA provider, who will then get in touch with us to make the transfer. While we aim to complete all transfers within 30 calendar days, the timings will depend on your new ISA manager.
We do not charge a fee to transfer your Loanpad ISA to another ISA manager.
Yes, you can cancel your ISA within 14 days of the day you opened your ISA account.
It’s not possible to cancel when:
We’ll transfer any current year ISA investments you’ve cancelled into your standard cash account – and this will no longer count towards your yearly ISA allowance. If you want to cancel previous year ISA investments moved to Loanpad from another ISA manager, we’ll need to transfer these to another ISA manager.
Once the cancellation is complete, you’ll still be able to open another IFISA – with Loanpad or another ISA manager – or a different type of ISA with another ISA provider. And you’ll still have your yearly ISA allowance to work within.
If you close an ISA outside this 14-day cancellation period, it will still count as part of your yearly ISA allowance used.
All the interest you earn from your Loanpad ISAs will be exempt from income tax and capital gains tax.
The amount of tax you need to pay depends on your personal circumstances, and the rules around tax may change. If you’re unsure about how much tax you should be paying or whether a Loanpad IFISA is right for you, speak to an independent financial or tax advisor.
It’s completely your responsibility to manage your taxes, including communicating with HMRC, filing tax returns and paying tax owed.
As your ISA manager, we’ll also keep HMRC informed on the status of your Loanpad ISA.
While we do all we can to keep risk as low as possible, we can’t remove it completely. Accounts on peer-to-peer platforms such as Loanpad should be considered investments, and they do come with a degree of risk.
All of the money in Loanpad cash accounts is kept in a completely ring-fenced Barclays Bank UK account in line with FCA rules. This is kept completely separate from our day-to-day operations and your cash holdings would be returned directly to you if a platform wind-down is initiated or we were to go out of business.
Our lending process is designed to keep risk as low as possible. Please see answers to later questions for more details on our lending process.
Please note that Loanpad is not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). As with any investment, your capital is at risk and the value of your investment may go up or down in value.
While we do all we can to keep risk as low as possible, there are some risks to be aware of. The four main risks to bear in mind are a loan not being repaid, a delay to withdrawing your money, the risk of lower than expected returns and economic factors.
Please note that Loanpad is not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). As with any investment, your capital is at risk and the value of your investment may go up or down in value.
We consider protecting your money to be our most important responsibility. We do this through a unique combination of mechanisms, including:
We keep any money that hasn’t been loaned in a ring-fenced Barclays Bank UK account, in line with Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) rules. This account is completely separate from our day-to-day operations, and neither we nor our creditors have any right to the money in this account.
This is a ring-fenced fund designed to maintain your daily interest payments in the event that any loan repayments are missed. You can see real-time details of this fund on our platform at any time.
Whenever money from the ICF is used, it’s replaced and added to from a service fee charged to borrowers in default. This both keeps the fund healthy and encourages prompt repayment of loans.
The ICF is designed to cover interest payments only (not money you have invested in loans) – and we can’t guarantee that it will cover all interest at all times.
The loans made with your money are shared with our lending partners – we only work with carefully vetted established lenders. They manage each loan with Loanpad oversight and are responsible for the higher risk part (called the ‘junior tranche’). The lending partners will always take at least 25% of the loan, meaning there’s lower risk to you if a borrower defaults. If this does happen, your money is repaid (plus interest) before the lending partner’s share.
This also means it’s in our lending partners’ interest to check potential borrowers very extensively, just as we do.
Loans come to us for approval only after the established lending partner has gone through their own extensive approvals process. We receive a pack of due-diligence information, including items such as:
We don’t just take these documents at face value. Our surveyors and solicitors check the details carefully and may ask for more information about the borrower, the security and the strategy for repaying the loan. As circumstances can change, we also make sure we have an appropriate recovery plan in case of default.
Loanpad investors’ portions of any loan will normally be between 5% and 50% loan to value. When calculating the loan to value for our investors’ portions, we use Open Market Value but obtain a number of other valuation metrics from our surveyors as part of our loan approval process. These are explained below:
In many cases, we also take additional security such as a Personal Guarantee from the borrower.
As with any business, there is no guarantee that Loanpad can or will continue to operate forever.
As part of our commitment to you and in line with FCA regulations, we must take reasonable steps to ensure that we have arrangements in place to ensure that our loans continue to be managed and administered in the unlikely event that Loanpad initiates a platform wind-down.
These reasonable steps are called wind-down plans and are designed to help ensure that existing loans continue to be managed, monies recovered from borrowers in a timely and efficient manner and then ultimately repaid to you as the investor.
We are aware that events in the industry have put an increased focus for investors on wind-down plans. There are two important aspects to this:
Wind-down plans protect you by helping Loanpad identify when a wind-down would be appropriate and provide a blueprint on how to manage the remaining loanbook until it is fully repaid.
The main risks you should be aware of in the event of a platform failure include:
As a result, robust wind-down plans seek to mitigate these risks and are critical in order to give all investors the appropriate comfort and safeguards that loans you are invested in will continue to be managed and administered in the unlikely event that Loanpad initiates a platform wind-down.
To prepare for the unlikely event that a decision is taken to conduct a platform wind-down, we have a robust plan in place to manage the loans (alongside our lending partners) to ensure that the income generated from the loanbook is sufficient to cover the costs of managing the loans during the wind-down process.
As Loanpad earns money on a daily basis based on a margin of loans under management, it is able to use its daily income to cover relevant costs during a wind-down including ongoing provision of online account access.
Our cost base will reduce significantly during the wind-down period in areas such as staff and marketing and the wind-down team’s focus would be to manage the existing loans alongside lending partners and facilitate loan repayments as soon as possible.
We have incorporated into our analysis the reduction in Loanpad’s daily income as the loanbook is wound down and we also have capital set aside (which will be increased with the size of the loanbook) to help ensure that there are sufficient financial resources to conduct an orderly wind-down.
Our lending partners take on contractual obligations to investors /Loanpad in so far as management and reporting are concerned and combined with their “first loss / skin in the game” this is unlikely to be treated lightly even in a wind-down scenario.
Due to Loanpad’s business model, we expect to keep interest payments to investors in place at the prevailing rate and provide full access to investors online accounts during any wind-down process.
In the event that the costs to complete the wind-down exceed Loanpad’s daily income, we will reduce the rates of interest paid to investors accordingly to enable an orderly wind-down of the loanbook.
If you have a Loanpad ISA, your ISA would continue to work as normal and we’ll give you 30 days’ notice before we stop functioning as an ISA provider – and let you know about your right to transfer your ISA to another manager.
Finally, please note that all of the money in Loanpad cash accounts is kept in a completely ring-fenced Barclays Bank UK account, in line with Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) rules. This is kept completely separate from our day-to-day operations and your cash holdings would be returned directly to you if a platform wind-down is initiated or we were to go out of business.
In the event of a platform wind-down, there would be the following key changes in the way your Loanpad account operates:
We take security of your data extremely seriously.
Our servers are fully cloud-based on the Amazon Web Services (“AWS”) platform. We always maintain a minimum of two geographically-separate servers to ensure our website remains active and new servers can be created almost instantly if required.
Our investor data is held in an AWS Aurora database cluster containing at least two identical versions of all our investor data. These versions are then further replicated creating a minimum of four copies of investor data at all times which are stored in a minimum of two geographically-separate locations.
In addition, we undertake a complete backup of all investor data daily and these are stored across geographically-separate locations.
There’s no guarantee that all borrowers will stay on top of their repayments, which is why there is some risk to the money you have invested with Loanpad.
If a borrower falls behind on their agreed repayments, we’ll take every possible step to collect the money owed. In most cases, this won’t affect your interest as our interest cover fund will cover the missed interest payments to you. If you have a Loanpad ISA, your funds will remain in their ISA wrapper and the interest you earn will still be tax free.
With our lending partners, we stay in close contact with borrowers. So we can usually see potential problems coming and advise borrowers on how to get back on track. Typical options might be the borrower extending the loan, refinancing with another lender, selling their property to repay the loan – or, in rare cases, we may take legal steps to recover the loan.
If it looks like a loan is in danger of not being repaid in full (default risk), we’ll remove it from our portfolio of live loans and ‘freeze’ the money you have involved in that particular loan. We call this a suspended loan. Because your money is spread across all loans daily, the impact of any one loan defaulting should be minimal to you. You’ll continue to receive interest through our interest cover fund, and you can see any suspended loans under the ‘My Loanpad‘ tab in your dashboard.
We’ll take steps to recover the loan through selling the borrower’s property (our security) and using the proceeds. Once this is done, we’ll ‘unfreeze’ and repay your share of the loan, plus interest. In the event that the sale of the security didn’t cover the loan, you might not get back all the money you had invested.
If we discover that your Loanpad ISA doesn’t satisfy ISA rules – for example, if you’ve gone over your yearly allowance – we’ll let you know straight away. We’ll first see if we can ‘repair’ your ISA to bring it in line with ISA rules – there may be a fee for this.
If this isn’t possible, part or all of your ISA will officially become ‘void’ and you may have to pay tax. HMRC will contact you to confirm the details.
The actions we may take if some or part of your ISA is invalid include:
It’s completely your responsibility for paying any tax or penalties due to HMRC if we discover you have an invalid ISA. We’re not responsible for this, or for any tax benefits you might lose, if we take the steps above.
You must let us know straight away if you leave or are planning to leave the UK.
Under ISA rules, you can’t invest in ISAs unless you’re resident in the UK. So you can no longer put money into an ISA after the tax year that you move, unless you’re replacing ISA money under flexible ISA rules. You can keep existing ISAs open and still enjoy tax relief on the interest you earn.
We’ll continue to accept your ISA investments until the end of the tax year that you move abroad. If we discover that you moved abroad previously and have invested in a Loanpad ISA while living abroad, we’ll move the related money (including interest earned) from your ISA account to your standard Loanpad account.
If you move back to the UK, you must confirm in writing that this is the case – and we may ask you to fill in a fresh application and investor declaration.
It’s your responsibility to be clear about your residency with both us and HMRC. You can find out more about this on the government website, including guidance on the statutory residency test.
You should let us know straight away and send us a copy of the court’s bankruptcy order. Your estate will pass to a trustee, which we’ll also need details about – either directly from you (firstname.lastname@example.org) or from the court.
We’ll close your Loanpad ISA on the date the trustee takes over – and will be guided by them from that time. We may also need to bring your membership of Loanpad to an end. You won’t lose the tax benefits you’ve already had on your earnings, but may not be able to continue receiving them.
If the worst were to happen, we’d wait for instructions from the person who has Grant of Probate on what to do with your account.
If you have a Loanpad ISA, your account will be designated a ‘continuing account of a deceased investor’. This means that no more money can be added to the ISA and any interest earned after your death won’t be exempt from tax.
Your Loanpad ISA will continue to work in the same way as your standard account and the tax status of your ISA will not be affected. Please see our main FAQs for more information about this.
We hope you’ll be completely satisfied with your Loanpad experience. But if you’re not, and would like to complain, please email email@example.com with details of your complaint and your Loanpad account number.
We’ll do our best to put things right for you straight away. If we haven’t managed to do this in eight weeks, you can refer your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service. We’ll give you information about how to do this both when we first acknowledge your complaint and when we send you our final response.
For more information about how we’ll handle your complaint, please visit www.loanpad.com/complaints-policy.