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How this investor used P2P to help buy a family home

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Damon Angus, 45, is a senior counsel at Allens, a law firm in Sydney, where he specialises in corporate finance and financial innovation. Following the birth of their first child, Damon and his wife decided to save for a new house. We spoke to him about how RateSetter has helped them accomplish that goal. 

How did you learn about RateSetter?

I was already familiar with peer-to-peer (P2P) lending from work, so I first learned of RateSetter when it was still a young company, about four or five years ago.

Why did you choose to invest in P2P lending?

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When I started looking for a P2P investment option, there weren't many P2P lenders in the Australian market. RateSetter stood out because it offered a retail product and had been awarded an investor certificate.

As a finance lawyer, I always expect that any investment provider I would consider has impeccable accreditations - on this score, RateSetter impressed me and I made my first investment in 2016.

What was your main objective as an investor?

When my wife and I had our first child, we realised that we'd need to move into a bigger house: and that meant saving for one. Our primary goal was to find an ethical and relatively safe investment that offered a better return than a bank term deposit.

As such, P2P lending was perfect for us and it also fit well into our diversified investment strategy.

It's a little riskier than a term deposit, but we felt reassured by the Provision Fund that protects RateSetter investors and I also took into account its past performance.

Did you invest in one of the longer-term markets?

No, we're actually invested in the one-month market. That's simply because we're saving for a house and can't say exactly when we'll need to withdraw our funds.

How do you monitor the performance of your current investments?

Our focus is on getting a better than bank rate return on our investments. P2P lending is a good way of achieving that outcome. With RateSetter, you can see rates on the dashboard , compare them, and check that you're getting better returns than the bank can provide. Every month, the interest on our loan is automatically reinvested. It's really easy.

Have the RBA's rate cuts affected the way you manage your investments?

Not really. I had already chosen investments that outperformed bank interest rates, so the rate cuts are really just a confirmation that I made the right choice.

Has P2P lending met your expectations?

Absolutely. P2P lending has performed far better than our term deposits. As a result, we've continued to add to our initial investment and now have about $900,000 invested in consumer loans on RateSetter's platform. Even after we find the house we're saving for, we see P2P lending  as having an ongoing role to play in enhancing our investment portfolio.

Do you have any advice for investors who might be interested in P2P lending?

I think you'll find P2P lending quite easy to understand. Once you've done a small transaction, you'll figure out how it works without any trouble - the learning curve is easy to climb. So, if you're looking for somewhere secure to store your money, P2P lending  is a great choice.

It's a relatively liquid investment and, because of the Provision Fund model RateSetter uses, in my view it's safer than other options.

To sign up and invest with RateSetter visit RateSetter.com.au/money.

This information should not be taken as financial product advice and has been prepared as general information only. Provision Fund is not a guarantee, capital at risk. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement available at RateSetter.com.au/pds before investing. RateSetter Australia RE Limited ABN 57 166 646 635 holds AFSL 449176/ ACL 449176.

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Daniel Foggo is the chief executive officer of RateSetter. He has a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) and a Master of Business in Economics and Finance. Daniel was named FinTech Leader of the Year at the 2016 Australian Fintech Awards, and Fintech Entrepreneur of the Year at the 2017 Australian FinTech Business Awards.
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