New entrant in the buy-to-let and bridging loans space gets full authorisation in FCA’s latest surprise.
LandLordInvest, a peer-to-peer lending platform for buy-to-let and bridging loans, has received full authorisation from the FCA, paving the way for it to become an ISA manager. LandLordInvest has spent 24 months in application mode. The firm initially announced that it was nearing launch in May 2015, saying then that it expected to receive FCA authorisation within a few weeks.
With the regulatory green light in hand, LandLordInvest has now submitted an application to HMRC to become an ISA manager, which will allow the platform to offer Innovative Finance ISA investments. The platform aims to offer investors tax free returns of between 5 and 10 per cent once its IFISA is live.
LandLordInvest is not dissimilar to LendInvest in terms of product. The firm focuses on residential buy-to-let and bridging loans ranging from £30k to £750k in size. The minimum investment amount is £100 and the platform's bridging loans carry a maximum term of 18 months, while the buy-to-let loans have terms of up to five years.
“We have after a long and rigorous process finally been authorised by the FCA,” said Filip Karadaghi (pictured above), chief executive of LandLordInvest. “We are delighted to have reached this important milestone, ahead of many larger peer-to-peer lending platforms, that are still operating under an interim permission. Full FCA authorisation means that we have proved to the regulator that we are able to meet its high threshold standards and have the appropriate regulatory and operational infrastructure in place.”
LandLordInvest is the latest in a string of early stage firms to get the go-ahead from the FCA. Other examples include Peer Funding, which had never written a loan at the time of its authorisation, Crowdstacker, Crowd2Fund and Lending Works. Some of these platforms are older and larger than others, admittedly, but they are all considerably smaller than the UK’s very largest marketplace lenders, Zopa, Funding Circle and RateSetter, which continue to operate under interim permissions.