PeerBerry Review 2020 - Up To 12% Annual Returns
What Is PeerBerry And What Are The Returns?
PeerBerry is a P2P investment platform and after Mintos the largest lending platform in Europe. Investors can buy consumer loans typically covered by a buyback guarantee. These mainly consist of consumer micro loans and a small share of business loans across multiple countries in Europe. This works as follows. For example, a borrower who wants a loan, applies for one at one of the loan orginators. Once approved, the loan is placed on the PeerBerry marketplace where investors can fund borrowers’ loans. By utilizing this marketplace an investor can get multiple loans and get as much as 10 to 13 percent return on investment on a yearly basis. You can either invest as a private individual or as a company.
Is PeerBerry Safe?
As an universal rule: with investing comes risk. Be aware that past performance is no guarantee for future results. With this in mind, PeerBerry as a P2P platform is safe and well-developed. PeerBerry is covered by the Aventus Group and Gofingo Group, who guarantee you will get your money back if the borrower is not capable of paying back the loan. We’ll touch upon this guarantee in-depth later on.
We do have to note that it is essential to be careful about the lenders you choose. We suggest you allocate your funds to Aventus, operating in the Czech Republic, Poland and Ukraine as these are countries the Group is most profitable in. Make sure you do extensive research on where to invest, as well to diversify by geography, loan type but above all loan originator. You can check that here, under loan originators. If you do so, you’ll able to get very decent returns with PeerBerry.
Signing up at PeerBerry is rather simple and can be done by taking the following steps:
- Go to www.peerberry.com and hit the green “Start investing” button;
- Fill out the first form as shown below;
- Continue to the second form and fill this out as well. You can start investing right away;
- At this point PeerBerry doesn’t ask you to identify yourself, but when you want to withdraw money you will definitely have to. We do recommend to have your identity verified before you start investing, this can be done here under the tab ‘withdraw’.
Registering at PeerBerry:
Loans Available With PeerBerry
Once registered you have an overview of all the loans available with PeerBerry. The idea is rather simple. A borrower applies for a type of loan with one of the companies connected to the PeerBerry marketplace. Once an applicant is accepted, the loan is published on this marketplace where investors can choose from multiple loans: short and long term loans, real estate, lease and business loans.
The majority of loans available are for a short period of time, usually around 30 days. There are some differences between them; the most notable ones are listed below:
- Short term and long term loans: A fixed-term consumer loan with a maturity that varies between 7 to 1080 days. On a fixed date the borrower pays back both the principal amount and the interest. The most important differences are the loan term and the country you invest in.
- Business loan and real estate loans: both come with a buyback guarantee, and both only pay out interest during the loan period. You will get the full amount back after the loan has matured.
We prefer the short terms loans from Aventus, specifically from the Czech Republic, Poland and Ukraine because:
- these are the countries the Group is the most profitable in, decreasing your risk;
- there is no secondary market available, which gives you as an investor an early possibility to opt out;
- it gives you a stable and stronger cash flow compared to the business and real estate loans, on which you only receive interest.
All the loans offered by PeerBerry come with a buyback guarantee, which we will touch upon next.
Characteristics of a short term loan on PeerBerry:
PeerBerry's Buyback & Additional Group Guarantee
Buyback guarantee & Additional Group Guarantee
You’d rather avoid it, but what happens when a loan is not paid back in full? All loans listed on PeerBerry are secured with a buyback guarantee. The buyback guarantee is the loan originators’ obligation to exercise the buyback of the claim if the borrower fails to make payments for more than 60 days. The loan originator will repurchase the loans in full including the accrued interest.
Moreover, PeerBerry has an Additional Group Guarantee. If the loan originator faces financial difficulties and is not able to honour the buyback guarantee, the Additional Group Guarantee will come into force. It is an extra layer of security for the investor, as the Aventus Group and Gofingo Group will cover all liabilities of this particular company.
The question is then: are they capable of doing so and can they actually guarantee the buyback?
Overall, the guarantee is as strong as the Group is – otherwise it could not provide the buyback for the investor. Based on the latest financial figures, which you can find here and here, and the audited annual reports we’ve received from PeerBerry, the Aventus and Gofingo Group have been very profitable over the last few years. They have a strong balance and good net profit margins. In other words, the Group is very well capable of upholding the buyback guarantee.
Implications of the Covid-19 virus
In light of the latest crisis, PeerBerry and the Group haven taken extra measures besides the buyback and Group guarantee, to reduce investors’ risk:
- Risks in some countries are “hedged” by tightening credit policy and changing the product parameters depending on where the loan originator is operating from;
- The loans are issued online, increasing cost efficiency during quarantine;
- Both Aventus and Gofingo have increased their buffer in case investors decide to withdraw more money than usual;
- Moreover, as the Group already operates in multiple countries in Europe the business of Aventus (and therefore also the risk) is diversified.
It’s in the best interest of the company to stay financially fit and all the measures taken make sense to us. If you want to read more on this, check here and here. It also useful to keep an eye on PeerBerry’s blog.
Investment Opportunities With PeerBerry
Once you have decided on your best investment strategy, investing can be done either manually or by using the auto investment feature. Loans are selected based on the parameters you’ve set. There are three important differences to take note of:
- Firstly, when using the auto investment tool once you’ve set the parameters right there is no hassle logging in, picking the most suitable loans yourself and making sure your money is well invested. This is a major timesaver.
- Secondly, the number of parameters of the auto invest feature are rather limited, as shown below. PeerBerry provides you with all kinds of information about the borrower, like the number of loans taken, employment and whether the loan is still current. Unfortunately, those criteria cannot be used in the auto invest tool. If you want to carefully check your borrowers, the only option is to invest manually.
- Lastly, PeerBerry has a lot of loans on offer. If you want to invest manually and you are looking for specific loans on high demand, you might lose an oppurtunity to invest, whereas with the auto invest tool this is usually not a problem.
Summarizing, we prefer the auto invest feature as it will save you a significant amount of time. The tool selects loans automatically and as the offer on PeerBerry is pretty big, your funds are invested rather quickly.
Setting of an auto invest portfolio of PeerBerry:
Use Of The Platform
If you want to deposit money with PeerBerry, there a few things to take note of. You can only invest with PeerBerry if you are a European citizen. If you qualify, all you need to do is transfer money from you personal IBAN so that you can be identified. Depositing funds to your account can only be done by transferring money to PeerBerry’s bank account, which will usually take up to two working days.
A direct transfer via, for instance, Trustly or Transferwise is unfortunately not on offer. This would give the investor more opportunities to deposit money. Nonetheless, when we deposited money into our account it was processed rather quickly and we got notified by email as well. The only currency you can use to deposit is the euro, which is also used when investing. The minimum investment per loan is 10 EUR; there is no maximum on depositing. In case of larger sums of money, PeerBerry’s Loyalty Programme might be of interest; see the text below.
If you want to withdraw funds, your identity as well as your IBAN bankaccount need to verified. The latter is automatically taken care of when you deposit money to your PeerBerry account. Withdrawing money is free of charge. The minimum amount is EUR 1 which can only be allocated to the bank account you’ve deposited from. You can only withdraw in EUR, not in other currencies.
Fees & Taxes
Contrary to some P2P platforms, PeerBerry doesn’t charge either for using the platform, depositing or withdrawing money or administrative costs. This is definitely a plus for PeerBerry here. When it comes to taxes, PeerBerry does not tax its investor where PeerBerry leaves this responsibility to the investor. You pay taxes based upon the country you reside in, in accordance with applicable laws.
PeerBerry Loyalty Programme
PeerBerry has a loyalty programme which can boost your investment returns even more. There are three categories, shown in the graph below.
Characteristics of the loyalty programme of PeerBerry:
The terms are as follows:
- You have to have been a PeerBerry member for 90 days;
- Your portfolio needs to contain EUR 10.000 (Silver), EUR 25.000 (Gold) or EUR 40.000 (Platinum), part of which should be actively invested. This also means that money which is deposited but not invested does count towards the threshold values mentioned. For example: if you have EUR 8000 invested and EUR 4500 is in your current balance (not invested), the sum would be EUR 12.500. In this particular case you would be in the Silver category, which means that you get an additional 0.5% return on your next investment (note this doesn’t apply to current investments). For instance, investing in a new loan of 10.5% would actually add up to 11%.
- Whether you qualify or not is calculated at the end of the month. Updates appear at the beginning of the following month.
Other P2P Platforms Similar To PeerBerry
Clearly, PeerBerry isn’t the only peer-to-peer platform available. Every platform will have its pros and cons and it could be useful to invest with more than one in order to diversify your investments.
Some other opportunites we came across which we thoroughly reviewed and that you might want consider are:
- VIAINVEST; with a fixed annual rate of 11%;
- Lendermarket; with a fixed rate of 14% on a yearly basis;
- Mintos; with a rate of around 12% annualy;
- Robocash with net yearly returns up to 14%.
If you click on the link above, you get to the platform right away, or you can read the full reviews of these P2P platforms here.
Overall Conclusion On PeerBerry
Although PeerBerry is a fairly new P2P platform, we rate them 4/5: the results are impressive and in a short period of time it rose to second place in the P2P lending industry (with Mintos as number 1). Moreover, PeerBerry still has a lot of room to grow:
- The buyback guarantee ensures you get your investment back and it is a comforting thought to have an additional layer of security with the Additional Group Guarantee: the Group covers potential losses;
- The amount and variety of loans available is expanding, increasing the competition with other platforms like VIAINVEST or Robocash;
- The interest rates of 12% are competitive and guarantee a monthly cash flow;
- If you opt for the right loans with a proper maturity date you can get your money back rather quickly if you need to, which is useful given the absence of a secondary market;
- The website is available in multiple languages and customer support is extensive.
Concluding, PeerBerry is a mature P2P platform backed by a very profitable Group. The website is neat, very easy to use and investing is a breeze once you get acquainted with the actual investing. Therefore, PeerBerry is definitely a platform to include in your investment portfolio.
Summary & Overall Rating
You can find PeerBerry’s pros and cons here below:
- Interest range annualy from 10 up to 15%
- № 2 P2P platform in continental Europe
- Most loans are covered by a buyback guarantee
- Excellent customer service
- Neat and easy to use website
- No secondary market available
- Auto-invest settings are limited, you need to check them regularly to ensure that funds are fully invested
- Amount of loans available are sometimes limited