But this offer is only available for a limited time.
What’s the deal?
New customers who commit £3,000 or more to one of Wellesley & Co’s fixed rate term accounts via MoneySuperMarket by August 7 will be treated to a brand new iPad mini*, worth £239.
Be aware that this product is not the same as a savings account, so there is a risk you may lose some or all of your initial investment.
This exclusive deal applies to terms of between 18 months and five years, with interest rates ranging from 4.00% to 6.32% per annum (pa). You can choose whether to have your interest paid each month or on maturity, as the table below highlights:
Interest paid on maturity
Once you have committed your £3,000 and selected how long you want to lend for, you will receive your iPad mini within seven working days.
Because Wellesley & Co is a peer-to-peer lending platform, it takes money from savers and lends it directly to borrowers, cutting out the need for banks or building societies. It specialises in asset-backed lending to small businesses and individuals, so the funds you pay to Wellesley may, for example, be loaned to investors in residential property.
As mentioned, to qualify for the iPad mini offer, you must be a new Wellesley & Co customer and have transferred £3,000 or more in to one of Wellesley’s fixed rate term accounts via MoneySuperMarket by 5pm on August 7.
The peer-to-peer lending sector has been regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) since April 2014 which means all firms must operate under certain rules. However, your cash will NOT be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) which covers the first £85,000 of your savings (per institution) should a bank or building society go bust.
But Wellesley & Co does have measures in place to help reduce the risk to your funds, including spreading your investment across every loan it makes. And, because all loans are secured against assets (such as residential property), if a borrower does not repay the loan, the property could be sold to recover any losses.
Wellesley & Co also offers its own ‘Provision Fund’ to cover any further losses.
Also be aware that, unlike standard savings accounts which pay interest after tax, peer-to-peer lenders (including Wellesley) pay returns BEFORE tax. This means you must declare the interest you earn in a self-assessment tax return.
Who’s it good for?
The offer of a brand new iPad mini will appeal to many, but this exclusive deal will ultimately attract investors who are looking for a new way to make better returns on their funds and have at least £3,000 to invest.
You can choose whether to have your interest paid each month or on maturity
It will also suit savers looking for a longer term investment, who are happy to tie up their funds for at least 18 months.
If, however, you do need to access your funds early, you may be able to do so through Wellesley’s Early Access Facility. But this will depend on whether another lender is willing to take your place at the same rate and term, and you will have to sacrifice some interest. Plus, if you’ve taken part in the iPad offer, Wellesley & Co reserves the right to deduct £239 from your balance.
What’s the verdict?
If you’re fed up with paltry savings rates and are looking for a new way to squeeze more out of your cash, investing in peer-to-peer lending could be for you. So long as you understand the potential risks of investing your money this way and are happy to lock away your cash for 18 months or more, this exclusive offer from Wellesley & Co is a great deal.
It was announced in the Summer Budget that from April 6, 2016, a new Innovative Finance ISA will be launched that will allow peer-to-peer lending to be sheltered from tax.
*iPad mini 2 16GB Wi-Fi £239 RRP
Apple is not a participant in or sponsor of this promotion
Peer-to-peer lending is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, but your money is NOT protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. There is a risk you may lose some or all of your initial investment.
Please note: any rates or deals mentioned in this article were available at the time of writing. Click on a highlighted product and apply direct.