Updated May 2019 – Kuflink Review
How I Make Safe, Easy 7%+ Annual Returns Investing In Secured Property Loans!
My Lending Experiences & Actual Investment Returns Published Monthly Below.
What is Kuflink?
Kuflink were the first lender in the UK to offer “skin in the game“, meaning they invest 5% of their own capital into every loan they offer, taking the first loss on any defaulted loans.
On Select-Invest (manual investment) loans, they also provide a 20% first loss guarantee, offing investors another level of security.
Kuflink provides property secured bridging loans with return rates from 3.99% up to 7.2%.
Loan terms are from 3 to 18 months on Select-Invest, and from 1 to 5 years on Auto-Invest accounts.
Kuflink are growing fast. With great customer service and a growing loan book. They have a unique offering.
I have been investing with Kuflink for about a year now, and so far it has been a very positive experience. I increase my investment with them each month, and will continue to do so moving forward.
Finding loans with the kind of LTV’s we can get with Kuflink, and the returns associated with them can be difficult elsewhere.
Read on to learn about my detailed personal lending experiences with Kuflink, as well as my investment strategy and long term view of the company.
My Kuflink Account Returns, Growth & Income Charts
The Obvious Investor – Easy-Info Table – Kuflink Review
Overall Rating*: (4 / 5) Who can invest: Loan Currencies: £ Estimated Return: 3.99% to 7.2% My Actual Return
My Calculated XIRR: 4.71% (appears low because interest paid annually on some loans) Risk Rating*: 3/10 - Low to Medium Early Exit: No. Min. Investment: £100 Deposit Funds: By bank transfer. Usually takes 24 - 48 hours for BACS. Can be same day for Faster payments.
International payments can be made through TransferWise.
Auto-Invest: Yes Manual Invest: Yes Lending To: Agreements directly with borrowers Loan Types: Bridging Loans. Default Rates: Actual 2.25%.
No lender has lost capital.
Loans Amortize: Some Loan Security: Yes. Property with good LTV's. Typically below 75% Provision Fund: No. However offer "skin-in-the-game".
Time to Invest: Auto-Invest - almost instantly.
Select-Invest - varies, dependent on available loans.
Time to Mange: None (Auto-Invest).
Lender Fees: No. Payments Received: Interest payment received annually on Auto-Invest loans, monthly on Select-Invest loans. Amount Lent: £50 million+ Number of Investors: N/A Loan/Dflt Stats: N/A Regulated: Yes: FCA Location: Gravesend, UK Launched: 2016 Website: www.kuflink.co.uk Email: [email protected] Telephone: 01474 334499 (UK) IFISA/IRA: Yes: IFISA (Auto-Invest loans only) Cashback**: Yes! £100 Cashback! Click here for further information. How to Sign Up**: Sign Up Here!
Kuflink – Overview
Kuflink’s Peer to Peer business was launched in May 2016 in Gravesend, Kent UK.
Kuflink’s property bridging division has operated for many years before launching their Peer to Peer platform, so the Kuflink team has a lot of experience beyond the time Kuflink has been in business.
In the 3 or so years Kuflink have been offering Peer to Peer loans, they have lent almost £50 million on over 91,000 investments.
More impressive is the fact that to date, no Kuflink investor has lost money.
Kuflink are regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with full permissions under FCA number 724890. They gained FCA permissions in April, 2017.
The FCA is not the same as the FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme), so capital is not protected as it would be in a bank.
Signup Process – Kuflink Review
Opening an account with Kuflink is fairly easy. Just the usual ID and anti-money laundering checks.
If they can verify you though one of the UK’s credit agencies, you may be approved immediately. If not, you may need to send them a copy of your passport or driving license, and a utility bill or bank statement.
Residents of most European countries can sign up with Kuflink if they can pass the ID checks.
A UK bank account is also required to signup. If you don’t have a UK bank account, see my TransferWise Borderless Account review for more information on how it may be possible to get UK banking details even if you’re not a UK resident.
Deposits & Withdrawals – Kuflink Review
Deposits and withdrawals are made by bank transfer from a UK bank, or an international bank account via TransferWise.
From a UK bank account, deposits usually show up in your account the same or next working day.
Depending on where the money is coming from, funds deposited through TransferWise can also show up the same day in some cases. 24-48 hours is typical if not.
Withdrawals are only to a bank account, and typically take 2 – 3- business days.
Time to Become Invested
When investing in their auto-invest accounts, investment is typically very quick, it took my first investment a few minutes to get the funds distributed between loans.
With manual Select-Invest loans, the time is dependent on how much research you need to do on the individual loans, and how many loans are available.
Who are we lending to?
Kuflink is a true Peer to Peer platform. Lenders are lending directly to borrowers who are typically small to medium size British businesses.
Loan agreements are directly between the lender and the borrower. Kuflink just acts as a middle man, managing loans, payments and debt collection etc.
Loan Security – Kuflink Review
Kuflink only provide loans secured by property. The Loan to Value (LTV) ratios are typically very good, below 75%, I’ve invested in some at less than 30% LTV.
Loans are first or second legal charge on the properties the loan is against.
With an LTV of 30%, a property would need to lose more than 70% of it’s value before an investor would lose money. Then on top of that, Kuflink’s “skin-in-the-game” would take care of another 5% to 20%.
It’s easy to see why no Kuflink investor has lost money through defaults to date.
Kuflink’s website provides good information on the security of each property.
It is even possible to drill down and see the full valuation report, in the case of the property in this screenshot, the full report was 59 pages!
Kuflink loans do not amortize, so only interest payments are received until the principle is paid back in a lump sum at the end of the loan period.
On Auto-Invest loans, interest is paid annually. With manual Select-Invest loans, interest is paid at the beginning of each month.
Selling Loans and Withdrawing Capital
In February 2019 Kuflink introduced its secondary market, so it is now possible to sell loans to other investors if you would like to exit a loan early!.
There is a 0.25% fee for selling loans which is really not bad if you need your capital quickly.
Remember though, Kuflink Loans are typically only 3 to 12 months on manual Select-Invest loans, and 12, 36 or 60 months terms on the Auto-Invest loans. So it’s not too long to wait if you don’t want to pay the exit fee.
Diversification – Kuflink Review
Auto-Invest loans are diversified automatically when you initially invest with Kuflink. Capital is spread between available loans in each loan portfolio.
In the screenshot below, you can see that I deposited £500 initially and this was split equally between available loans.
Diversification on these loans is not as much as I would hope for, however because Kuflink have good loan security, and they invest 5% of their money into Auto-Invest loans on a first-loss basis, I’m comfortable with it.
With manual Select-Invest loans, you obviously diversify your capital into loans manually. Kuflink’s loan book is growing, but not huge yet, so you have to be prepared for less diversification. With the low LTV’s Kuflink typically has though, it’s really not an issue.
This seems to work well as to date, Kuflink state that no lender has lost any capital.
They have had defaults though, (the rate they quote for the last 12 months is a little over 2%).
Retirement Account – Kuflink Review
Only Auto-Invest loans are available through the Kuflink ISA.
Website – Kuflink Review
Kuflink’s website is easy to use and provides good information for both auto-invest and select-invest accounts (only auto-invest for Kuflink ISA).
The Dashboard with your accounts and balances is displayed when you log in to the website, as well as loans you are currently invested in.
On the auto-invest page, you can see rates available for the 12, 36 and 60 month loans, 3.99%, 5% and 5.35% respectively .
Simply choose your investment, and the amount you want to invest. Kuflink will then place the money on loan for your almost immediately. That’s it! If you don’t have the time to do the due diligence on manual select-invest loans, Auto-Invest is a good option, although the rates of return are a little lower.
As mentioned previously, something that is a little different with Kuflink to many other P2P lenders is that they pay interest annually on the auto-invest accounts, so you won’t see your account grow month by month. You’ll need to wait, then interest is added in a lump sum.
On select-invest loans there is a wealth of information available on Kuflink’s website.
The individual loans, terms and valuations are all available to help you make your decision on where to invest.
When you hover over a loan in the “Available Loans” page, you will see a box pop up giving you information on loan term, date etc. You will also notice how much capital Kuflink is investing in to the loan itself.
Once you find a loan you want to invest in, Kuflink will show the minimum investment required in the loan to earn 1p of interest over the loan period.
When you enter the amount you want to invest in to the investment amount field, Kuflink will then tell you how much you’ll earn over the loan period on that amount, at the advertised interest rate.
As you scroll down, you will see even more detail, as well as full access to a detailed valuation report from reputable Charted Surveyors as in the screenshot shown earlier in this review.
Summary – Kuflink Review
My experience with Kuflink so far has been excellent.
Their low LTV’s are wonderful, and because they invest into each loan themselves (skin-in-the-game), it means they will be extra careful about who they loan our hard earned money to. Evidenced by the fact that no investor has lost money to date out of the 38,000+ investments they have processed.
I like Kuflink a lot and I intend to increase my lending account with them substantially moving forward. The safety they offer with better-than-average return rates are difficult to pass by. Plus the chance to use the Kuflink ISA for tax free investing is an added bonus.
Thumbs Up Points for Kuflink
Safety – Skin in the Game – Is Kuflink Safe? Kuflink invest 5% of their own capital in to auto-invest loans, and they guarantee 20% in select-invest loans on a “first in, last out” basis which gives an extra layer of protection to investors.
Property Secured with Good LTV’s – loan-to-value numbers seem very resalable, which means that in the event of a default investors should be able to recover most of their investment.
Auto-Invest –there are three auto-invest accounts if you don’t want to self select making investing hands off requiring very little time to maintain. These account pay very reasonable rates too!
Detailed Loan Information – for select-invest loans there is very detailed information to help investors make an informed decision.
Website – very easy to use and understand.
Diversification – with the auto-invest accounts Kuflink spread your investment over as many loans as possible helping you adhere to the “Prime Directive” and diversify your investment.
Low minimum investment – £100 to start. Minium investment per loan is “enough to earn 1p of interest”. If your portfolio is still small, it’s still easy to invest with Kuflink and still diversify over many loans.
Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – Regulated.
IFISA – Kuflink ISA available for tax free investing.
Thumbs Down Points for Kuflink
No Provision Fund – However their “skin in the game” and their low loan LTV’s go a long way to cover any possible defaults.
Smaller Company – with shorter track record.
Interest Paid Annually – on auto-invest accounts, you won’t see your account grow until you’ve been invested for at least a year. On the select-invest account, interest is paid monthly.
Smaller Loan Book – Kuflink seem to go for good quality loans, with good LTV’s. Their credit requirements are very strict. This means a smaller loan book for diversification purposes, however the loans they do have are safer than many loans found on other platforms.
Risk Factor – 3/10 – Low – Medium
Is Kuflink Safe? I consider Kuflink to be in the low to middle area of the risk scale.
Even taking in to consideration that loans are secured, and they have “skin in the game”, they are still a young but fast growing company.
I have enjoyed investing through Kuflink, and based on my experience thus far, I think they’ll go on to do great things. Their low LTV’s make them an enticing investment. TrustPilot reviews give them a great rating too which they certainly deserve.
Who Can Invest with Kuflink
Residents of most European countries with a U.K. bank account can invest with Kuflink. Contact Kuflink for further information.
Offers & Signup Links**
New Kuflink customers receive the following Kuflink cashback on an investment of £500 or more when they use signup links from obviousinvestor.com. Must invest into loans within 24 hours of first investment.
£250 Kuflink cashback for £5000+
£100 Kuflink cashback for £1000 – £4999.99 investments
£50 Kuflink cashback for £500 – £999.99 investments
Similar Lenders to Kuflink
Ready to Get Started Lending? Disclaimers: * My opinions on ratings and risk rating factors refer to my personal experiences with a company or account. Including factual data such as interest rates, loan types, security, platform history, default numbers etc. ** I’m not paid by any company to review them, nor am I employed by any of the companies I review. In most cases, I am actively investing my own personal capital through these companies which you can see with full transparency on my Lending Returns page. Some of the sign-up links on this website are referral links. When you click on these links, I may receive a small commission, at absolutely no cost to you. Your support helps me to run this website and continue to offer new reviews and portfolio updates. Please read my full website Disclaimer before making investment decisions.
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* My opinions on ratings and risk rating factors refer to my personal experiences with a company or account. Including factual data such as interest rates, loan types, security, platform history, default numbers etc.
** I’m not paid by any company to review them, nor am I employed by any of the companies I review. In most cases, I am actively investing my own personal capital through these companies which you can see with full transparency on my Lending Returns page. Some of the sign-up links on this website are referral links. When you click on these links, I may receive a small commission, at absolutely no cost to you. Your support helps me to run this website and continue to offer new reviews and portfolio updates.
Please read my full website Disclaimer before making investment decisions.