Kufflink

Overview

At first sight, Kuflink looks to be a very ‘down-to-earth’ IFISA provider. The website isn’t nearly as corporate as many of the other sites we’ve reviewed to date.

Despite being relatively new, the company has already become well-established with a detailed and informative web presence that clearly sets out the company’s history, as well as how the platform operates.

The company is split into two divisions: Kuflink Bridging, the lending arm, and Kuflink Ltd, the team responsible for the peer-to-peer platform and investment vehicle.

The synergy between the two of these have already helped the firm become well established and develop a solid reputation among investors.

In fact, the firm picked up a number of awards in 2017, most notably at the Business Moneyfact Awards (Business Product Innovation of the Year), SFI (Specialist Finance Introducer) Awards (Product Innovation) and Property Wire Awards (Best Specialist Finance Provider).

So clearly the team at Kuflink is doing something right.

Customer service

The company say that they invest heavily in their people and there seems to be a good customer service operation in place, as well as a well-structured complaints process, should you need it.

Reviews on TrustPilot are excellent with the company scoring the full five stars with customers reiterating that staff at Kuflink are helpful and responsive.

The stats

The Product

Like many IFISA providers, Kuflink offer the opportunity to invest in loans secured against property. Typically, these loans are made to developers who require short to medium term bridging loans. Investors can then invest in these in three ways: ‘Select-Invest, ‘Auto-Invest’ and ‘IF-ISA’.

As the name suggests, Select-Invest offers the opportunity to choose which loans to invest in, based on fairly detailed information presented by Kuflink, and claims to offer a return of up to 7.2%. Auto-Invest does that work for you, diversifying your investment cash across a portfolio of loans. This is a fixed rate product offering up to 7%. IF-ISA is essentially the Select-Invest product in a tax-free wrapper, again offering returns of up to 7% annually.

There is a choice of three different terms: one year offering a returns of 5%, a three year option offering a rate of 6.1% and a five year term offering 7%.

Between all three options, the Select-Invest product appears most attractive, in that the rates are higher and, as we’ll see, there’s greater protections in place against loss.

Security

Perhaps the innovative thing about the Kuflink IFISA is that the firm co-invests 5% into all loans in the investment pool, so if loans default, this co-investment takes the first hit. Additionally, the Select-Invest product provides an additional loss guarantee of 15% on top of the co-investment.

Kuflink cap loans at 70% of collateral values, further minimising the risk of loss for investors. The homepage of the website is updated regularly with investments stats and, at time of writing, the firm has taken over £30 million of funds spread across 50,000 investments with zero losses – so all in all an impressively secure product offering and track record.

Conclusion

Kuflink’s rates aren’t exactly market leading, but, on paper, this looks to be one of the safest offering on the market, so there’s a lot to attract newcomers to the IFISA investment, especially when you consider that, unlike other providers, there are no recurring fees.

Furthermore, Kuflink is currently adding a sweetener to their offering in the form of tiered cashback incentives for would-be investors. There’s £50 cashback for investments between £500 and £999, £100 up to £4999 and £250 for over £5000. It’s worth pointing out too that Kuflink operates a charitable foundation to help the local community, so this may interest those looking for a more ethical investment platform.

While Kuflink boosts no losses to date, with some research we were able to discover at least one bad loan (which, potentially, might be recovered), but Kuflink could be more upfront and transparent on facts such as this.

However, Kuflink’s own financial performance has been solid, delivering profits in at least two of the past three years while simultaneously investing in its team and operations, so prospects still look rosy at this particular IFISA operator.

Originally Published: Tuesday, December 4th, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, December 4th, 2018

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