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Zopa review

By Michael Trudeau

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Zopa review

If you're thinking about saving or borrowing money through a peer-to-peer lending website, read our in-depth Zopa review.

Zopa was the UK’s first peer-to-peer lending website. In 2013, it introduced a central compensation fund that aims to pay out to lenders whenever a borrower fails to make a repayment. Like other sites, this fund is limited, so it could run out if lots of borrowers fail to repay. However, in common with RateSetter, Zopa has a 100% track record of covering defaults so far.

  

Zopa brand image

Customer score

2nd out of 3 peer-to-peer lending websites

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Zopa peer-to-peer lender details

Lending terms

  • Minimum lend: £10
  • Maximum lend: No maximum
  • Lending term: Choice of three years or five years, although from mid-March 2016 lenders will no longer be able to choose term of loan. Instead, they will be assigned a term of anywhere from one to five years based on available borrowers.
  • Can I withdraw funds early? Yes, but you will have to pay 1% of total amount withdrawn on most products (0% with Zopa Access, from mid-March 2016)
  • Average rate of return for lenders: 3.8% (three-year loan; after fees but before tax) or 5% (five-year loan; after fees but before tax. Rates checked 18 February 2016)

Borrowing terms

  • Minimum amount you can borrow: £1,000
  • Maximum amount you can borrow: £25,000
  • Borrowing term: One to five years
  • Can loans be paid off early? Yes, and without any penalty fees
Zopa peer-to-peer lending satisfaction
Overall experience 4 stars out of 5  
Savings rates 3 stars out of 5  
Explanation of the risks 4 stars out of 5  
Default rates 4 stars out of 5  
Variety of products available 3 stars out of 5  
Ease of use of the website 4 stars out of 5  
Customer service 4 stars out of 5  
Clarity of information on the website 4 stars out of 5  
Online community 4 stars out of 5  

Table notes:

  • Star ratings out of five show levels of satisfaction for each category.

What Zopa's customers say about them?

‘Easy-to-use website, easy to withdraw and invest, and good email reminders.'

‘Straightforward, and better rates than a building society. I have no cause to mistrust the system.’

‘Good interest rate paid, but absence of FSCS coverage as on other savings remains a concern.’

Alternatives to peer-to-peer websites

If you're looking for a loan, it's worth checking out Which? Best Rate personal loans, too.

In almost all cases you'll want to build up cash savings (in Isas or savings accounts) before considering putting your money into a more risky investment such as peer-to-peer lending.

If you're looking for higher returns you might want to consider other investments.

  • Last updated: Mike Trudeau
  • Updated by: July 2016