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Envestio is currently one of my preferred investment platforms. There are several reasons for this. First of all the returns are some of the best you can currently expect from crowdlending. A whopping 16-22% annual return! What is even better is that the loans come with a 90% repurchase guarantee which is not common with these kinds of returns. Furthermore, I really like how this platform enables you to diversify over a large number of sectors. The investments are usually loans for capital to grow for already established companies or startup capital for new companies.
Who is Envestio?
Envestio started as a private investment fund in 2014 and opened to the general public in 2017. They are based in Riga, Latvia. They have over time grown mature as a crowdlending company. They have had a large number of projects on the platform and to this day not a single defaulted project! Most of their projects are done with businesses located in Latvia, Estonia, Poland and Czech Republic.
Signing up with Envestio as an investor is easy and free. Just click the blue “Sign up” button on the top right side of the website and you will be taken to a form where you fill in some basic contact information.
Ones you have filled in your information and hit the “Sign up” button under the form, Envestio will send you an email where you will need to click the “Confirm registration” link to validate your email address. This will finalize the signup process and take you the Envestios front page, where you can now login and see your dashboard.
On the left side of your dashboard you will be able to see your account balance, the amount free to invest, the amount already invested in various projects and earned interest. Of course if you have just signed up, all these numbers will be 0 euro. I have added a screenshot of my dashboard to give you an idea of what it will look like ones you have started investing. On the right side of the dashboard, you will see the “Investments repayment schedule”. This is a list of all the coming interest payments and principal paybacks.
Transfer money for investing.
The next thing you need to do it to transfer funds to your account for investing. To do this, you must go to the menu “My account” and click the button “Add funds”. The button will unfold and reveal the options “By bank payment”. Click this option to continue.
You can do a SEPA transfer to your account if this is your first time investing. You will pay a small fee for the transfer. But at least then you are off and can get started. You can do a SEPA transfer in your netbank. You will need to use the Bank Account Number also called IBAN and the SWIFT or BIC code. Do not forget to add your payment detail including your Investor Account Number in the comment for the transfer, so that Envestio will know what account to deposit the funds to. The money should arrive on your investment account in a few business days.
You can also use Transferwise, which is a great online service for transferring money abroad. It usually is cheaper than a SEPA transfer. I actually made a deal with Transferwise to give you your first transfer of up to about 580 euros (500 £) for free – try it out! Another transfer method I really recommend you use is Revolut, as you will get the transfer and currency exchange for free with this service for up to 5300 euros per month! I only used a SEPA transfer on the first few transfers when I started investing because it was something I had done before and was comfortable with. Now I only use Transferwise and Revolut. They are both cheaper options. When your money arrive at your investment account, you are ready to invest in projects!
A small tip: If you are using Revolut you will need to setup a new beneficiary for Envestio. The first thing you will be asked about is the country in which the bank resides. The IBAN number will help you determine this. The IBAN/Bank Account Number starts with “LV” which stands for Latvia. I have marked the three pieces of data you need for the transfer with a yellow color in the screenshot below. Make sure that you use your own data from the Envestio site and not the data in the screenshot below. This is just for demonstration purposes so you can see where to find the information.
The next thing you need to do is to provide picture and address id due to the AML laws. For picture id, you will be best off using your passport. Passport is king when it comes to picture id. You will need to upload a picture of the full cover as well as the full open picture page. Anything else than a passport may put you in a waiting position at support and that is just annoying and could drag on for days.
You also need to supply address id. I usually go to my direct debit section of my netbank and pull a PDF of any utility bill with my name and address on it. If you receive yours by mail, just take a picture of it and upload it. After you have uploaded your documentation it will take about a day for Envestio to approve your documents. Ones approved, you will be able to withdraw you money from the platform. The money will be transferred to the same bank account number you used to fund the account. Now you are all set up and ready to invest in projects!
What sectors can I invest in?
This is where Envestio really stands out. Usually, crowdlending is based around consumer loans, business loans, and real estate projects. Envestio does not have personal loans. They do have real estate projects from time to time but mostly it is in completely different sectors. They have had projects like: Fruits wholesale, Renewal of freight containers, Construction of Modern “Slowfood” Street Market, Wind turbine farms, Urban mining, Production of Sawn Timber, Production of wood pallets, Crypto-mining Farms, Fish processing, Power Plant, Car rental business, Biomass fuel and Oil product terminal rent. I really love to diversify my investments. This is something I aim to do as much as I can in all of my investments as it lowers the risk tremendously. Envestio enables me not just to do it over many different projects but also over different sectors.
To view projects available for investing click the menu “Projects” at the top of the page. As you can see below, there are currently no projects available for investing, as all projects are fully funded. You can see this as the image over the project description is marked with a yellow “FUNDED” sign. Projects sell out fast, so you have to act fast when a new project is introduced to the platform.
If you click the “Learn More” link under the project summary, you will be taken to a page with detailed information about the project. You will find a project description, more information about the investment opportunity and loan in general, info on the market and a sample repayment schedule.
To invest in the project, click the blue “Invest in this project” button at the bottom of the page with project details. You can invest as little as 1 euro per project at Envestio, which offers an excellent opportunity to diversify over many projects, even if you just have a little money to invest. You will also be able to see an investment breakdown of how much of the loan amount has already been funded by investors and how much is still available for investing. If you have eagle eyesight you may be able to see my share of the project as a very thin red slice.
Let’s put 100 euros in the amount field and click the “Invest” button. You have now invested in the project! The confirmation page will show you some loan details and also a “Sell” button. This enable you to get out of your investment at ANY time, by paying a 5 % penalty rate. This is really neat if you need to liquidate your funds fast, as there is no secondary market on the Envestio platform.
An overview of all investments.
Under the menu “Investments” you can see the “Active investments”. The investments in this list are not yet fully funded and you can invest in them. However, this list is usually empty, as the popular Envestio projects sell out fast. Under “My investments” you can see a list of all the projects you are currently invested in. You can filter on “Organization”, which is the company implementing the project, “Type”, which is the type of industry, “Period”, which is a date span and interest rate “Percentage”. If you click the “View” button, you can see details for the investment and this is also where you would go to sell your investment, if you need to do so before the loan matures.
Reporting for your taxes and statistics.
Under the menu “Statistics” you can generate an income statement summary for a custom period. You can set the from and to dates or you can choose some of the preset options current month, previous month, current year and last year. This is very convenient when you need to do your tax reporting or just want a quick overview of your earnings.
When you click the button “Download document” your income statement will be generates as a Microsoft Word document to be downloaded. Besides the interest income for the period you can also see your bonus income for the period. This could be first time deposit bonus and timespan bonus. The income statement also hold information of any expenses you may have paid as commision for premature sale of investments. You also get a summary of all cash deposits and withdrawals made on your investment account. Finally there is some tax information for Envestio, for example VAT number.
Communication from Envestio.
Envestio will send you emails when certain events occur. The first one you will receive will be an email to verify the the deposit you have made has arrived on your investment account and is ready to invest when a new project is introduced. The email will contain information on the account top-up amount , the current account balance and the amount currently free for investing.
Every time a new investment opportunity becomes available on the Envestio platform you will receive an email. It will contain important information about the project. The most important information is the interest rate and when it will be paid, how long the loan term is, how the debt is secured, who the borrower is and the project purpose.
This will give you a good basis for deciding if the project is something you want to invest in. If the project still sounds interesting for you after reading the email, then I recommend you login to the platform then and there and read about the project in more detail. If you still want to invest after reading the details, do it right away. If you wait just a few hours, the project will most likely be fully funded by other investors.
The best emails you will receive from Envestio is of course the notifications on interest payments from projects you are invested in. The email contain information on the value of the interest payments and which project the payment comes from, the current account balance and the amount now available for investing. An email like this can include interest payments from several projects.
When you sell an investment you also get a confirmation by email.
16-22% returns and no fees. How is that even possible?
Everything in investing is all about risk. So the bigger the interest rate the higher the risk usually is. Let us take an example of a development project. If a company has a piece of land and want to build a building on the plot, they need some money for a short time span until the building has been built. For a traditional bank, that is a risky loan as the land is not worth a lot until there is a building on it. There is no hard asset as collateral for the loan. Ones the building has been constructed, the company can then convert the loan into a regular bank loan with a lower interest rate, as there is now a building on the plot. This is why projects like this usually work with balloon payments. During the construction you receive interest payments on the loan and ones the building has been constructed, you receive your principal back. I really like this kind of fixed income investments. It keeps you feeling safe and happy when you see your interest income arriving in your account on a regular basis. It is very motivating and keeps you from panicking in your investments like it sometimes happens for novice growth stock investors.
What if I change my mind and want my money back?
Envestio offers to repurchase your investment at any time for a 5 % penalty rate. I made a small test for you, so you can see how easy and fast it is to sell you investment and get your money out again. When you look at the details for an investment, you can click the “Sell” button. This gives you a popup with information on how much you will be credited after you confirm. As soon as you click the the blue “Confirm sell” button, the money will be on your investment account as available funds. There is no delay and you can withdraw the money immediately if you like.
Here are the some of the investments I am currently invested in at Envestio. My portfolio will expand as more projects come to the platform. I try to invest in every project that they put out for investing. So far I am really happy with the results and the returns. Below you can see some pictures and short descriptions of the projects I have invested in. You can also see how much money I currently have invested with Envestio on the “My Crowdlending Portfolio” page.
What does “Tier” and “Factoring” mean?
When a project name has a “Tier x” or “Part y” attached to the end of it, what does that mean? A Tier may represent a loan tranche (part), in case a borrower doesn’t need all the funds at once. So, the tiers may have different terms. When a project name has a “Factoring x” attached to the end of it, it mean separate loans for separate shipments or trade orders.
Source of your invested funds.
As part of “Anti Money Laundering” and “Know your Customer” policies Envestio may ask you to verify the origin and source of funds brought by you to the Envestio platform, in order to comply with the regulations of financial institutions whose services they use. It is a standard part of our verification procedure for those investors who has brought high volume investments on our platform. This will happen when you portfolio size exceeds 10.000 euros.
When that happens, you will receive the following email from Envestio accounting.
What are the downsides of investing at Envestio?
The only downside I have experienced is the low number of new investments. There are only a few per month. As the projects are also in very high demand you need to act within hours when a new project is presented or it will be completely sold out. This means that you have to transfer money to the platform beforehand to have them ready to invest. That money will just sit on the platform, not making you any returns until a project comes along and that is not optimal. But I think it is worth the wait.
Envestio is without a shadow of doubt one of my favorite crowdlending platforms. The interest rates are high and together with the repurchase guarantee it makes the projects very attractive investments. The fact that you can sell all or parts of your investments back to Envestio at any time is also really great, as you can liquidate your funds fast if you need them before the loans mature. Envestio is the crowdlending platform that I currently have the most money invested in.
Share the knowledge, your opinion and get answers to your questions.
Have you already invested with Envestio? What do you think of the platform? Are you thinking about signing up? Have you invested in other platforms? Please leave a comment or any question you have below. If you know someone who would like to get started investing or is already investing, feel free to share using the social media sharing buttons below.
Sign up and a get 5 € bonus to invest.
I have made an agreement with Envestio, so that you will get a 5 € bonus with your first deposit of at least 100 €. The bonus will be paid out 24 hours after your first deposit. On top of that, you will earn a 0,5% bonus of all investments made during the first 270 days.