Peer to peer lending websites Zopa review
2nd out of 3 peer-to-peer lending websites
Zopa peer-to-peer lender overview
Founded in 2005, Zopa was the UK’s first peer-to-peer website and since then it has helped people lend more than £528m in peer-to-peer loans. Borrowers are mainly individuals but it can help facilitate loans for businesses as well. In 2013, it introduced a central fund that pays out to lenders whenever a borrower fails to make a repayment, although there are no guarantees it will do this.
Zopa peer-to-peer lender details
- Minimum lend: £10
- Maximum lend: No maximum
- Lending term: Two years, three years, four years and five years
- Annual fee: 1% of the total amount lent
- Can I withdraw funds early? Yes, but you will have to pay 1% of total amount withdrawn
- Average rate of return for lenders: 5% (on one to three year loans, after fees and bad debt, but before tax)
- Average default rate: 0.18% per month
- Minimum amount you can borrow: £1,000
- Maximum amount you can borrow: £15,000
- Borrowing term: One to five years
- Can loans be paid off early? Yes, and without any penalty fees
|Zopa peer-to-peer lending satisfaction|
|Explanation of the risks|
|Variety of products available|
|Ease of use of the website|
|Clarity of information on the website|
- Star ratings out of five show levels of satisfaction for each category.
What Zopa's customers say about them?“They spread your risk by allocating every investment across a spread of borrowers and you can set your own risk and reward levels. However, the interest is paid gross and the returns are probably not as good as you can get by investing in shares. “They used to be much better, offering greater levels of control - now they have become rather bland.”“My bad loan rate was much higher than average although return was still better than the bank.”“There is always a risk with this sort of investment and I would not invest too much of my savings this way. Their website is OK but I think information could be clearer.”“It does what it says on the tin and I am receiving the fruits of my investment – it’s not the waste of time that are the high street banks.”“I've hardly ever had any reason to contact them, but when I did they were very responsive.”"Default experience with Zopa was good even before introduction of contingency fund. The introduction of the fund has reduced return rates."“The process has been fairly seamless - right from moving the money to my Zopa account (for lending), to being lent out to borrowers has been hassle free. Zopa sends email updates and the tool and data available on the site make for good analysis.”“Very straightforward way of investing while also helping people to borrow at reasonable rates. Great customer service.”“The website is easy to use and there’s excellent communication. If you have any questions you can always get them answered quickly by phone and they are always dealt with in a friendly, helpful and professional manner.”
Alternatives to peer-to-peer websites
If you're looking for a loan, it's worth checking out Which? Best Rate personal loans too.
And if you're looking for a safe home for your savings, consider putting your money into a Best Rate savings account or cash Isa. If you are content to take a little more of a risk for a potentially higher return, see our guide to investments.