PeerBerry has been a steady rock in my portfolio for a while now. I kept the investment rather stable and have even been slowly increasing it. It is giving me a steady 12.03% income without to much hassle so it will continue to be a part of my portfolio and thats why I decided to Review Peerberry.
If you are a more advanced reader and are already familiar with PeerBerry then scroll further down to find out what auto-invest settings I am using in this PeerBerry Review.
What is PeerBerry exactly?
PeerBerry is a Fintech company where you can invest in loans. This system is called peer to peer lending. Basically PeerBerry is a mediator between Loan Originators who provide loans to individuals. As an investor you invest in those loans and get a certain return.
The Loan Originator provides you with a lower interest rate then they are providing to the individuals. In exchange they provide insurance under the name of buy back guarantee. That means if a loan defaults they will buy back the loan. Be aware that not all Loan originators offer buy back, so its important to check this before investing.
Because you can invest already from a small amount (10 EUR), that means that if you invest 500 EUR it is spread over 50 loans and different loan originators.
Its important to note one thing that gives additional confidence in PeerBerry: PeerBerry has send me their financial statements and they are making a profit!
On the site just click the “Start Investing” button to go trough the wizard for Registration. Have your passport ready before you start and you need to use a device with a camera such as a smartphone or laptop, you will need them at the ID verification screen.
PeerBerry will take you trough a very simple wizard to get you registered.
I recommend that you fill in your phone number as it will allow you to enable two factor authentication.
In the next screen you will need to fill in more details including your passport or ID number
Once you signed up you can start investing.
Once you finished the registration process take your time to get familiar with PeerBerry. PeerBerry has a nice simple overview screen where you can view your balance, profit and investments.
You can also view your investment statuses, unlike other platforms its quite rare that loans are in delayed payments. The Loan Originators must do a really good due diligence here. Buybacks are rarely needed.
You can also see your Net Annual Return, it seems to show slightly more then the return I calculated.
Before you can invest you will need to deposit money. I usually use bank transfer. It took just a few hours to reach my account when I deposited on a workday. You can use the time to get to know PeerBerry better and read up on its Loan Originators.
When you click “Deposit / Withdraw” you will come to the deposit screen where you will find the bank details. Remember to deposit using the right Payment Details as these will contain your investor number.
I could only withdraw money to my own bank account, which is positive of course as it makes my money more secure.
I withdrew 100 EUR when I was re-balancing investments with ease.
Before you start to invest its important you do your homework and decide on what loan originators you want to invest in. I personally went for a medium – low risk range of Loan Originators.
On explore p2p (you can view the full list here ) you can see a great rating of all the loan originators on PeerBerry. I personally went for Medium – low Risk. Aventus group is a really big secure Loan Originator that can be trusted. In the bottom there is some smaller Loan Originators but they did get a group guarantee from Aventus, so I decided to trust them.
In the end you will need to decide on this yourself. I did start the first months with all loan originators enabled and so far I have not experienced any problems and very few delayed payments.
When you click the invest button you go to a search screen containing all investments you can put money in.
This is the manual investment method. If you want to choose exactly what loan originator to invest in then this would be the screen you use. Just make sure to select buyback yes. There is no reason why you would take in additional risk. You will notice there is quite a few of loans available you can invest in.
PeerBerry has also supplied the more passive investor, like myself, with a tool to make it easier to invest.
I mentioned before how important it is to check the loan originators you invest in. You can find more be
I chose the auto invest and to be honest so far the loan originators I have invested in have performed really well. The max portfolio I have set indicates me that I have a diversified portfolio although it is really difficult to see how diversified I am.
PeerBerry is still young and I see them making changes regularly (the two factor authentication was only recently added), so I am confident more improvements will come soon!
You can see my settings here:
What is important is to select the buyback guarantee and to make sure your portfolio is not that much higher then your actual portfolio. I also set the loan amount a bit higher because there are some periods that there is less loans available on PeerBerry. For the same reason I set the time at 20 months. This is quite long but I want to avoid cash drag.
I set the minimum interest rate at 10%, but most loans I invest in have a higher interest rate. The 10% is just good to allow for more diversification, but if you don’t mind a riskier strategy you could get away with a slightly higher percentage.
Other important settings are portfolio size (set this a little higher then the amount you will invest), and minimum/maximum in one loan. I set my maximum at 20 EUR.
If you put it to low you will not get a decent piece of good loans that hit the market, if you put it to high it will be hard to diversify. A lot depends of the size of your portfolio.
The secondary market
Right now PeerBerry has no secondary market. You will be exposing yourself to a liquidity risk if you decide to invest for long loan periods. From this perspective it might be more interesting to search for shorter term loans. I have confidence in PeerBerry and see it as an investment over many years that’s why I do not mind to put in 20 months.
I just would start with a lower amount of months at the beginning to see if you like the platform.
Reports on your investments
On PeerBerry its a bit harder to see how your diversification is doing. When you go to My investments you can get a report on what you are invested in, so you are able to do your own reporting.
But the information is not perfect. I was told by PeerBerry this will be one of the next features they will improve.
When I joined PeerBerry in September 2019 PeerBerry did not had two factor authentication enabled. But as you can see in the beginning of my blog they now do! Its great that they have this added security in place.
Apart from that PeerBerry will only write back to your own bank account, giving again added security.
Something unique about PeerBerry is that they have a loyalty program. So if you are loyal to the platform you will get additional bonuses. They have three ranks, silver, gold and diamond. They are not so easy to reach but the bonus silver is giving is already a nice extra. So far I have not reached it yet, but as I continue to like PeerBerry I don’t exclude I will at some point.
Investing is not without Risk. Assuming you invest in your own currency then in the case of PeerBerry I see a few main risks:
- A loan you invested in could default. If you have bought all the loans with buy back guarantee, which you should, the risk is moving to the LO’s defaulting,
- You can invest using buy back guarantee but Loan Originators can go bankrupt. This has happened a few times with LO’s having low ratings. This is why I chose to invest only in LO’s with rating B and above. Additionally the auto invest will help you to diversify in case it does happen. Also you will still have your claim on the loan if it happens, this will not change. It will just become a lot harder to get your money back.
- PeerBerry could go bankrupt: I consider this as a small Risk. PeerBerry has over 7 employees so is no longer a startup but not a very big company either. It also released its yearly P/L and there it was shown to be a profitable company. In the case PeerBerry does go bankrupt your claim is still there on the loans.
- Liquidity Risk: the risk that you cannot get your money out in time when you need it. This is a very real risk since they have no secondary market. If you cannot part from your money for to long avoid long terms.
I decided that the risks are worth the return, but everyone needs to decide for themselves and act with due diligence.
I did not find the financial statements on the Website but PeerBerry gave them to me right away when I asked for them. To be honest being one of the younger players I was surprised that PeerBerry is already profitable!
Remember these are the 2018 figures. I will request new statements of 2019 in spring and expect them to be better!
With 17500 investors and 191M loan portfolio PeerBerry is really on the map and cannot be called a smaller player anymore.
I can supply the full statement on request but you can view the last part here:
I’m looking forward to the 2019 numbers!
Transparency and communication
PeerBerry has supplied me all the information I asked for and are usually quite fast to answer. They are open about their financial situation and their loan originators. This is how I would expect a peer to peer lending site to act. Perhaps as an improvement more information on their Loan Originators and Financial’s of PeerBerry could be shown directly on the Website.
Where to sign up
I would like to stress that I would not review PeerBerry if I didn’t use it myself, I have a lot of faith in PeerBerry. If you do decide to take the step then I would appreciate it if you use this link as you will be supporting my blog when you do so.
In conclusion I am very happy about PeerBerry and will continue to expand my investments there. I consider PeerBerry a great platform in terms of Risk / Return and am working to increase the amount it has in my portfolio.
|Sign up Bonus||Yes|
|Allows company profile||No|
|Invest in individual Loans||Yes|
|Invest in other currencies||No|
|Invest in projects (such as real estate)||No|
|Staff is known||Yes|
|Transparrent about Loan Originators||Yes|
|Two factor authentication||Yes|