Frequently Asked Questions
Peer to peer (P2P) investment product closureback to top
In December 2021 we took the difficult decision to close the Lending Works peer-to-peer (P2P) investment product to new business and we have now written to you, confirming that we intend to fully close the P2P product and return all investor funds.
This Q&A document aims to cover the main questions you might have about what we are doing and what it means for you.
Why have you decided to close the P2P investment product now?
As you know, we’ve seen huge changes in the financial markets in recent years and been through unprecedented global events. The economic environment is very different from when we started the business, therefore the risk-reward analysis is no longer the same for our retail investors and the costs of running the business have increased materially. We’ve deliberated over options for how to close the P2P side of our business and we believe the sale of remaining loan portfolios is likely to result in the best outcome for our customers.
As stated in our letter to you, we’ve been closely monitoring the platform’s performance, as well as the wider savings and investments markets and believe that in the current interest rate environment, suitable alternatives exist for investors that you may wish to take advantage of. The process we are undertaking will lock in the returns you’ve already earned and enable you to invest funds elsewhere. Some of these alternatives may have greater liquidity and the security of Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) protection.
Can I opt out?
No. The changes we are making to your Lending Works Investor Terms and Conditions (Terms) permit us to terminate our agreement with you and your Membership of Lending Works. The Terms enable us to complete a sale of the entire retail investor book on behalf of all Lending Works retail investors and return your funds to you.
We believe that doing this is in the best interests of our retail investor customers and will result in a good outcome in the current interest rate environment.
Which of my loans will be included in the sale?
All the loans in your portfolio will be included in the sale; however, as the process to sell all retail investor loans will be carried out over a short period, it’s possible some loans might show as closed sooner than others. Loans that have been sold will show as ‘closed’ in your loan book. Defaulted loans that have been funded by the Shield will show as ‘defaulted’.
When will the sale happen?
We expect to complete the sale between 8 December 2023 and 6 February 2024. We will be in touch again by 8 December and will let you know at that point if there are any changes to the expected timescales for completing the sale. At that point, we will also let ISA customers wishing to retain their tax-free wrapper know when they need to request a transfer to a new ISA manager.
What happens to the Shield?
The Shield was set up to protect retail investors from credit losses in the portfolio. As noted above, the Shield has and will ensure that you receive your money back in full when a loan has defaulted. It has therefore fulfilled its purpose and will remain attached to the loan portfolio as part of the sale.
What is happening to my portfolio?
Your full portfolio will be purchased by Fluro Capital Limited at its current value, plus any unpaid interest accrued until the date of sale. Having considered numerous options, we feel this offers the best outcome for our investors by providing a lump sum which can be transferred to a bank account or, for ISA customers wishing to retain their tax-free wrapper, another ISA manager.
How can I see the current value of my portfolio?
You can log into your Lending Works account and view your dashboard to see your balance. Please note that while the portfolio sale is occurring, there will be periods during which you will be unable to view your dashboard. We will keep these periods as short as possible and you will see a message on screen that the website is down for maintenance.
Will you provide me with a tax statement when my account is closed?
Yes, we will be able to provide you with a statement once your account is closed and you will not need to wait until April to receive your 2023/2024 statement.
Will I still be able to access my investment account tax statements in future?
While we would encourage you to download and retain copies of your historic statements, your tax statements will continue to be available for six years after your account is closed.
What do I need to do to receive my funds?
For non-ISA investments, we will return your funds to the bank account linked to your Lending Works wallet. If we hold the correct bank account details for you, then you do not need to take any further action. If you need to update your bank details, please call us on 0207 096 8512.
If your investment is held in an ISA and you wish to retain the tax-free wrapper, you will need to transfer your investment to a new ISA manager. We will write to you again by 8 December 2023 to confirm when you need to nominate a new ISA manager. If you would like your ISA funds paid into your bank account instead, please let us know; however, be aware that you will lose the tax-free wrapper in doing so.
Will I be charged for early withdrawal?
You will not be charged any fees for early withdrawal or closure of your account. Upon sale completion, your full investment balance plus interest accrued to that date will be deposited into your bank account completely free of additional fees or charges.
How do I update my bank details?
Please call us on 0207 096 8512 to update your bank details.
Why can’t I withdraw my money now?
For the 30 days preceding the full sale of your portfolio we have disabled Quick Withdrawal. This is to ensure no one is charged unnecessary early withdrawal fees for trying to take out their funds before the sale is complete. The sale of your portfolio will incur no early withdrawal fees.
If you have funds in your Lending Works wallet, you will still be able to withdraw these in the usual way.
When will I receive my money?
The process of selling your portfolio will take place in stages. We currently expect the process to take place between 8 December 2023 and 6 February 2024, with (for non-ISA accounts) your full investment balance plus interest accrued to the date the process completes deposited into your bank account. We’ll be in touch again to confirm timings.
Customers with funds in an ISA wishing to retain the tax-free wrapper will need to nominate a new ISA manager. We will write to you again by 8 December confirming the process and date by which you will need to request an ISA transfer.
I have less than £0.01 in my account, what will happen to my money?
If you have a balance of less than £0.01, we will aggregate this with other balances of less than £0.01 to donate to charity.
What will happen to my Lending Works account?
Once the sale has completed and your funds have been transferred to your bank account or nominated ISA manager we will close your Lending Works account. We’ll be in touch again to confirm timings. In the meantime, we would encourage you to download copies of your historic tax statements as once your account is closed you will need to contact us to obtain them.
Will I lose the tax-free wrapper on my ISA?
No, ISA customers will be able to request a transfer to a new ISA manager to retain their tax-free wrapper. We will contact you again by 8 December 2023, confirming the procedure and timescales for doing this.
I want to complain.
We firmly believe that the actions we are taking to close the P2P investment product by selling the retail investor loan book and returning the full value customer loan portfolios to them, plus interest to the date of sale, represents a good outcome. However, if you’re not happy and want to complain you can contact us on the number below or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Our full complaints procedure, which also includes a written correspondence address, can be found here.
If you have any questions not answered here, please don’t hesitate to get in touch by calling on 0207 096 8512 or emailing email@example.com.
What’s happening to my money? Is it still safe?back to top
Your money will continue to be looked after in the same way it always has been. This remains a top priority. To read more about how we manage risk, please click here
Will I keep earning interest?back to top
Yes. All funds remaining in your accounts that are currently loaned out will continue to earn interest the same way they do today.
What do I need to do?back to top
You don’t need to do anything. If you leave your account untouched, your funds will continue to earn interest and pay back as they do today. All settings on your account will remain untouched, however you may wish to log in to your account to check how these settings are working for you.
If you want to invest in loans that other retail investors are selling via our secondary market, you can do so in your ‘Lender Settings’ in your Lending Works account, then selecting to ‘Automatically’ invest your money.
If you do not want to invest in loans that other retail investors are selling via our secondary market, you should set your Lending Works account to automatically return your money to your bank account. You can do this by:
- Sign into your Lending Works account at www.lendingworks.co.uk
- Once you have signed in, click on ‘Lending Settings’ in the top left of your Dashboard
- On the Lending Settings page, in the first section click ‘Manually’, in the second section click ‘Withdraw repayments (income)’ and then choose to receive your money monthly or weekly in the third section. ”
If you wish to remove your money from Lending Works, you may wish to check that your nominated bank account details are up to date, as this is the account you will be paid into. You can do this by signing into your Lending Works account at www.lendingworks.co.uk and reviewing your account details.
How can I get my money back?back to top
If you want to access your money early, you can use the Quick Withdraw feature. This will return your investment to your wallet straight away as long as there are sufficient funds sat in the lending queue. If you wish to access funds in your Classic account, you will be free to transfer money from your Wallet to your bank account manually or via Auto Income, as you can today.
If you wish to Quick Withdraw from your ISA account this is possible, but the money will lose its ISA status. Please see the ISA section for more detail.
Can I sell all of my loans?All loans that you have invested in that remain up to date are eligible for sale through the Quick Withdraw functionality. However, any loans that have missed payments and are in arrears will not be immediately eligible for sale.back to top
Will I be charged for this?All servicing of active investments will continue to be carried out for no fee. Quick Withdraw fees remain untouched and will work exactly as they do today.back to top
What if I want to keep lending?You can; however no new loans will be allocated to retail investors. If you choose to turn on the ‘auto-lend’ functionality in your account, your funds will be added to the lending queue, and will be matched against loans that have been sold using the Quick Withdraw functionality.back to top
Can I deposit more money?No. As of today, we are not permitting customers to add funds to their retail investor accounts and they would not be used to fund loans. If you have any regular payments set up with your bank please ask your bank to cancel them.back to top
What happens to my ISA?Customers who have an ISA with Lending Works and wish to retain this money within the ISA wrapper will be required to perform ISA transfers out to another provider when they transfer money away from Lending Works. Please note: funds subscribed in the current tax year (ending 5 April 2022) need to be transferred in full, along with any interest earned on those funds, whereas past years' ISAs can be transferred in parts.back to top
What happens to my Lending Works loan?Nothing. All loan customers will continue to be serviced exactly as they are today.back to top
What happens if a loan defaults?back to top
If a customer you are lending to misses a payment or defaults, The Shield will continue to act as a contingency fund, as it does today. For more information about how The Shield works, please click here.
Why are you doing this?Lending Works has been one of the UK’s most prominent peer-to-peer lenders, and it is with a heavy heart that we have decided to step away from this market. However, the dynamics of the peer-to-peer market have changed markedly in recent years, with retail investor participation steadily waning. This has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. We now need to utilise alternative funding sources to ensure that we can provide our loan customers with the service they need.back to top
Are there any additional risks?back to top
Throughout the run-off we will closely monitor the performance of our Loans book to ensure our retail investors continue to receive good outcomes. This will include monitoring the level of funds in the lending queue, which enables customers to use the Quick Withdraw functionality to access their money early by selling their loans to other willing investors.
Based on the level of funding available, previous trends in this market and the fact customers will continue to be able to earn interest by reinvesting, we believe it to be unlikely that this lending queue will run out. If this changes, or if the number of investors reduces to the point that investments are less diversified, we will take action to reduce the risk to customers.