Who we are?
EstateGuru is the leading Pan-European marketplace for property financing and investing. We operate in eight countries with nearly 100,000 investors who hail from 100+ countries. EstateGuru facilitates property-backed loans to SME-s, while enabling investors to earn returns by investing into these loans via an online infrastructure.
Our vision is to make property financing and investing attainable for anyone, anywhere in the world. Our talented team of 60+ top-notch professionals is all about growth, on both a business and a personal level. Our core values are being determined, bold, and free to embrace diversity. We practise empathy and honesty every step of the way.
What is our mission?
EstateGuru`s mission is to offer property financing and investment solutions trough a single marketplace for both individuals and businesses globally.
What are the benefits of investing via EstateGuru?
EstateGuru makes it easy for investors to access a variety of real estate investments with a relatively small amount of capital. The minimum amount for investment is €50, which enables investors to create a diversified portfolio. All loans are secured with a mortgage. While every form of investing carries a degree of risk we reduce this risk to our investors by conducting thorough due diligence and by taking real estate security on every loan, in case the borrower is unable to repay their loan.
Who are our clients?
EstateGuru finances projects which have a solid collateral, using first-rank mortgages, to achieve straightforward and secure funding in real estate lending. This model is especially useful for entrepreneurs who struggle with the `one-size-fits-all` policies of banks and gives everyone the opportunity to invest at an average historical interest rate of 11.8%. Currently, the borrowers and properties are in Germany, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Sweden, Portugal and Spain whereas investments reach us from 108 countries. 100% of EstateGuru's borrowers are small and medium sized companies.
What is a Referral Bonus?
EstateGuru investors can earn an extra bonus by inviting their friends, acquaintances, and family members to join the platform. To receive your bonus, you should share your personal referral code (EGU code) with the potential new investor. You can find your code at the top of your virtual account page or under the referral program sub-menu in the account settings section. For each new investor who joins and provides your code, we will give you a 0.5% bonus on any primary market investment they make in loans that achieve funded status within the first three months after their account activation.
Once the project the friend invested in gets funded, the bonus will be credited to your investment account. The same bonus is given to your friend, who also earns a 0.5% bonus on their first three months of primary market investments. In addition to the existing 0.5% referral bonus for you and your friend, you can also reach a series of milestones that unlock great rewards and features. Learn more about the referral program here -> Referral Awards
Which regulations apply to EstateGuru?
EstateGuru is regulated in every country where it operates and applicable regulation exists. EstateGuru is preparing to apply for the European Crowdfunding Regulation once the application round opens.
EstateGuru's local entities have the following licenses:
United Kingdom - FCA Crowdfunding license (obtained in 2019)
Lithuania - Crowdfunding license (obtained in 2019)
Finland - Crowdfunding license (obtained in 2020)
Germany - in process
In Estonia and Latvia no Crowdfunding regulation applies.
How to send queries to EstateGuru Customer Support?
Please describe the problem as accurately and clearly as possible. That way, we don't have to ask any additional questions, and we can start helping you straight away. If you're writing to us about a technical issue we would highly appreciate a screenshot showing the error message.
If you would like to inquire about a deposit made, please attach a payment order, if possible. If you send us a document or an image, please check that the document's quality is good and has all the necessary information.
EstateGuru's official information sharing channel is our customer support email email@example.com. Please be aware that we cannot give you account or loan specific information through any other channels.
Who can invest on EstateGuru?
You must be at least 18 years old and have a bank account in any of the EEA member states or Switzerland in order to lend through EstateGuru. We also have to perform certain "know your customer" checks before you can start building your portfolio.
How do I start investing in EstateGuru?
To start you need to sign up as an investor on our platform and follow the guideline sent to you via email to activate your user account. Before you are allowed to start investing, you are required to upload a copy of your government-issued identification document, fill in the required AML information and an appropriateness questionnaire. Once all this is done and we have notified you, you can transfer money to your EstateGuru virtual account and start building your portfolio. You can do so either by manual investing or by activating EstateGuru's Auto Invest feature which will make the investments on your behalf, ensure you gain access to suitable loans and build your portfolio based on your desired criteria.
What is the minimum investment amount?
The minimum investment amount is €50.
What to do if I encounter any issues while registering or operating on the platform.
If you have not received the confirmation email after registration, please check your spam folder first. In most cases, you will find the email there. If you encounter any issues with receiving the SMS please do as follows: try to restart your phone, wait 15 sekunds, and then try again. Also check if you have allowed and set to receive calls and messages, or A2P messages, from applications.
If you still have not received the letter or SMS, please contact our customer support via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to change your account details?
In order to change your account details, such as e-mail or phone number, please visit your profile and change it under contacts.
For other changes, like your name, please send your request to EstateGuru support via email@example.com with a copy of your ID and your new name and we will assist you with updating your data. Please send the request from the email address that is connected to your EstateGuru account.
The ID document used to verify my identity has expired. What happens now?
EstateGuru will send you several reminders that your document is expiring. Without a valid document your account will be suspended. During the suspension period you can still access your account, however you cannot make any transactions nor move any funds. As soon as the new document is uploaded and verified, your account will be reactivated. All your investments and funds will be kept safe and secured.
Is it possible to invest through a company?
Yes. You need to create an investor account in your own name and at the end of the registration form, you have to choose “Select this if you represent a company”. Make sure to add the full name of your business and the correct registry data. Before investing you are required to send us an accurate copy of your government-issued identification document.
Can I have multiple accounts?
Yes, you are allowed to have multiple accounts, personal or business, but each account must be registered with a different email address. You are prohibited from using your own referral code while registering a new investment account.
How to share your account with other selected users?
In order to share your account with family members or third party service providers, please go to "My account" page and enter the invitee's e-mail under "Account sharing" tab. After sending the invitation, the invited person needs to accept the invitation via their e-mail. After accepting the invitation they can view your account details. Please be aware that the invited person needs to have a registered and verified account on the EstateGuru.co marketplace. You can delete their access right at any time.
What is EstateGuru Premium?
EstateGuru Premium is a membership created for the platform’s largest investors. The membership is available for all investors who’s cumulative confirmed investments on the marketplace exceed €100,000. An automatic invitation will be sent as soon as an investor exceeds the proposed limit.
How is EstateGuru Premium affecting the retail investors of the platform?
EstateGuru Premium will not affect the position of the platform’s retail investors – we will ensure that a suitable proportion of the loan is always left for the retail investors. However, the Premium program will enable us to plan the platform’s loans better and increase the volumes. Also, to decrease the syndication period of the loan and thereby increase the average return for the investors.
Where do I find data for the tax report?
You are able to receive the data for the tax report under your profile "Account statement" and "Reports" section. All data can be downloaded in a format suitable for you.
Where do I find data about my transactions and account information?
As EstateGuru aims to be fully transparent, we enable investors to gain access to their portfolio data 24/7. From the "account overview" tab investors can find reporting capabilities, a statement summary and full transactions list. From the "Portfolio" page investors can see their past and future expected earnings, their portfolio statistics and full portfolio overview along with the schedules and the sales opportunity via secondary market. All data is downloadable in a format suitable for you.
Where can I adjust my communication preferences?
It is up to you which e-mail notifications you want to receive from us. You are able to adjust your email preferences under your account at Settings – Communication. Feel free to select which notifications you wish to get.
I want to archive my account, how can I do that?
We can manually archive your account if you do not have any outstanding claims or available funds. Please send your request to EstateGuru support via firstname.lastname@example.org
If you need to download an account overview or any other reports, please do so beforehand. After archiving the account this option will no longer be available.
How is my investment secured?
EstateGuru's loans are secured with real estate collateral and a mortgage that is established on the collateral property. Once the loan is fully invested, the borrower has to go to the notary office and enter into an agreement with the Security Agent to establish the mortgage. The mortgage will then be registered at the Land Register (with the Security Agent as mortgagee on behalf of the investors). The Security Agent is a separate limited liability company whose primary purpose is to hold securities for the benefit of investors making investments via EstateGuru.
What is the difference between secured and unsecured lending and why is secured lending better?
An unsecured loan is a loan which does not have any collateral in place, such as land or apartment, and is solely based on a borrower’s credit history and potential ability to repay. Secured loans have assets as collateral so that if a borrower cannot repay the loan, EstateGuru's security agent will start the asset sales process. Hereby, the risk of losing the money lent to the borrower is minimized.
More about real estate collaterals can be found in EstateGuru's blog via the link
If all loans are secured, why don't the borrowers approach banks?
After the credit crunch and the resultant recession, the risk appetite of banks was reduced significantly, which means that banks have tightened their lending criteria. Banks have strict criteria, which is not borrower friendly, follows a very rigid funding structure, and thus many loan applications are rejected by banks. EstateGuru is a small and flexible organization which is willing to help companies that are denied financing by banks despite having a strong business plan and solid collateral.
Is the interest rate fixed?
Yes, the interest rate paid by the borrower is fixed throughout the loan period. The payment frequency and interest rate can vary depending on the loan. The interest rate can however be increased should the loan be prolonged for more than 6 months - in such instance interest rate is increased by 3%.
Do I earn interest on funds which I have not yet invested in loans?
We do not pay interest on uninvested funds. To get the best return out of our marketplace you should invest your available funds into open loans to minimize cash drag. EstateGuru has an Auto Invest function which will take care of your investments without you having to worry about it.
Why is my investment in "pending" status?
"Pending" status indicates that the funds have been raised to finance the loan, however the notary transaction has not occurred yet. Normally the notary transaction will occur within 1 week from the end of the syndication period, however according to EstateGuru's loan terms the loan must be placed into "funded" status at the latest after 15 calendar days + 10 working days from the end of the syndication period.
What is calculated under "reserved balance"?
Once a loan is in "fully invested" status and has not reached the notary transaction yet, all adequate investments are marked in investors' portfolios as "reserved" funds.
Are the earned returns taxed?
The return that you receive from borrowers or EstateGuru is gross income, which means that EstateGuru does not deduct any tax from the amount. All returns earned from loans are treated by tax authorities as investment income and is thus subject to income tax. EstateGuru does not provide tax-related advice and recommends that you turn to a local tax advisor for additional information.
What is the procedure if the borrower cannot service the loan?
The aim of the due diligence is to assess the company's ability to pay back the loan. We do a thorough investigation of the borrowers’ background, creditworthiness and current obligations. If applicable, the business plan and financial statements will also be investigated. As soon as the borrower is late in repaying an instalment, we will make contact on behalf of our investors to find out the reason behind the delay. In case of a delay, the borrower shall pay an indemnity specified in the general loan terms. When the borrower faces financial difficulties, we will try to find the best solution for both parties. If the borrower is unable to repay the loan, we will cooperate with our debt collection partners and security agent to recover the debt through selling the collateral via an auction that is organised by the bailiff agent.
What happens to my investment contracts if EstateGuru ceases to exist?
EstateGuru is a facilitator of real estate investments, we do not offer the management of assets. All investment contracts are signed between the borrower and the investor, EstateGuru simply facilitates this transaction. All client funds are separated from EstateGuru’s operational funds. Should EstateGuru suffer financial difficulties or go bankrupt, client funds are safe and can still be accessed. In such an unlikely event, a contractual entity will be appointed to take over the role of EstateGuru to serve all the investments.
What are the fees for investors?
Owning an investment account via EstateGuru is free of charge. EstateGuru charges a 2% fee for selling claims via the Secondary Market (the fee is applied to the seller) and a €1 service fee which is calculated and charged every time an investor withdraws funds from the virtual account.
An “inactive account fee” is charged as contractual penalty to users who have deposited funds in their accounts but who have not made any new investments on the Primary or on the Secondary market for the last 12 months and who have no active loans in their portfolio. The fee will be applied monthly in case there is a positive balance on the user’s account. If the cash balance is €0 then the fee will not be applied. If the user makes an investment, the account status will be switched to active again.
All fees can be found in our price list.
Who can apply for a loan and what is the procedure?
EstateGuru's loan managers will make contact with potential borrowers as soon as an enquiry or application has been submitted via our homepage or customer support email email@example.com. We will go through the loan application in detail and ask more questions or request additional documentation where necessary. It will take approximately 2-3 days to evaluate the application and write the loan application, assuming all documentation is in place. After the final credit committee confirmation the loan will be opened for investing on the marketplace.
The syndication process can take anything from a few minutes up to 2 weeks. How fast the loan is funded depends mostly on the attractiveness and terms of the project.
Which documents are required to apply for a loan?
The list of required information and documentation includes but is not limited to information on the requested loan amount; loan period; interest and repayment schedule; description of the project – how the money will be used; description of the mortgage (location, condition); appraisal report; business plan; pictures of the collateral if applicable; information about the borrower's previous projects and introduction of the borrower. All documents can be uploaded in the loan application form. Additional documents can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or directly to your appointed loan manager.
What is the difference between a development, bridge and business loan?
A development loan is a loan that it used to finance the development's planning process or the development/construction of the property itself. A bridge loan is a short-term loan used to meet current obligations before securing a permanent financing option, enhancing the value of the property or selling the underlying asset. A business loan is a loan that is used to raise capital for supporting the day-to-day activities of the firm, business expansion, acquisition of equipment or goods, cover pending obligations (taxes, etc.). Despite the loan type, all EstateGuru's loans are secured with a mortgage.
What is an "open" loan?
The loan is in "open" status if the syndication period is ongoing and investing in the loan is still possible. Once the loan is full, the loan is placed to "fully invested" status.
What is a stage loan?
Many developers face the challenge in which the current value of their development object does not enable them to raise the capital that is needed to complete the development object entirely. As EstateGuru only lends against the current value of the collateral not the future value, then for development loans we often make use of the stage financing method. This means that when the first investment round of an object enables the borrower to increase the collateral value of the property by developing the object further, then in the context of the given LTV the investment amount can increase via next stages of the loan. All loans are funded solely based on the current value of the object and a precondition for every stage is a new updated valuation report and/or the cost report of the collateral or its construction.
What is LTV and projected LTV?
Projected LTV represents an LTV figure that EstateGuru's team is willing to offer for this particular project as a maximum. This indicates that within the next upcoming stages of the loan the LTV of the loan might increase up to the projected LTV figure.
Can I use land or forest as a security asset for the loan?
Yes, we do offer loans secured by land, forest or other types of real estate.
What are the fees for the borrower?
EstateGuru charges 3-4% of the total loan amount in case of the successful funding process and a 0-2% annual administration fee. In case of a delay in the loan repayment, several penalty fees need to be paid by the borrower.
Can loans be repaid earlier?
According to EstateGuru's user terms, early repayments are allowed and accepted without penalties. The schedules are automatically changed when there are some returns and due to earlier repayment, the interests are re-calculated. Interest is calculated solely for the period the funds were used by the borrower.
What happens when the borrower wants to extend the loan period?
If the borrower wants to extend the initial contractual loan period, EstateGuru will investigate the reasons and assess the situation accordingly. If the loan period is to be be extended, the borrower will be obliged to pay a fee to cover additional documentation expenses. Extension up to 6 months is allowed under the existing credit conditions. For an extension from 6 to 24 months, the interest rate is increased by at least 3%.
Where do I find the latest updates of a loan I have invested in?
EstateGuru aims to keep its investors updated via the loan update section, which can be found within the "update" section in the upper right panel when logged in. It is important to understand that EstateGuru posts updates as soon as we have significant and specific information to provide. For defaulted or late loans, we aim to publish an update in every 30 days.
Where is the investors' money held?
Investors' money is held in a segregated client money bank account. The account is separate from EstateGuru’s operational bank account and is protected in the unlikely event that anything happens to EstateGuru. Any uninvested money that is in your account can be withdrawn instantly. Investors funds are being kept partially within the Lemonway payment service provider in BNP Paribas, and in LHV Bank.
How to make deposits to my virtual account and what payment options are accepted?
All details required for making a payment can be found by logged in users on our webpage under the "deposit/withdraw" section. Users are welcome to make their deposits to EstateGuru via SEPA payments, LHV bank link, but also through third party service providers such as Wise Borderless, Lemonway, Revolut and Paysera. A user's first deposit is the means to verify the bank account, hence the first deposit needs to be done from the investor's personal bank account! If you are using the Wise service, please make sure you are using a multi-currency account for your deposits. More information can be found here. Attention should also be paid to the countries where such accounts cannot be opened - you will find the countries listed here.
Please be aware that EstateGuru only accepts euro payments - unfortunately, payments in other currencies will be rejected.
I have made a deposit, how long does it take to transfer the funds to my account?
Once the funds have arrived in our bank account, they are allocated to your virtual account at regular intervals during the day, from Monday to Friday. At the weekends, this may take more time. How quickly the funds will be in your account depends mostly on which bank you use. Our experience shows that it usually takes 1 day in Estonia and 2-4 days in other countries. Should you have any concerns regarding transfers, please contact our customer support via email email@example.com. We are here to help!
I have made a deposit to my virtual account but cannot make investments?
To invest on the marketplace your bank account needs to be verified. Hence, the first deposit needs to be done from the investor's personal bank account (SEPA payment). If you have made the first deposit from your personal bank account but investing is still not possible, please contact EstateGuru customer support via firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I change my bank account?
To change your bank account on the virtual platform you need to make a deposit from the new bank account first. This will enable us to verify your bank account. If the verified bank account belongs to the investor, the new bank account details are automatically saved on the virtual platform. When making future withdrawals, you can choose to which linked bank account you wish to withdraw.
I want to withdraw funds from my account, how can I do that?
All details required for withdrawals can be found by logged in users on our webpage under the "deposit/withdraw" section. Withdrawals are only made to the bank accounts you have registered in the EstateGuru system. The bank account owner's name has to match the EstateGuru account owner's name. These steps are required to ensure that your funds are not compromised, even if someone manages to get hold of your account access details. Cross-border regular SEPA payments between banks normally take 1-2 banking days depending on the time the payment was initiated as well as the bank. At EstateGuru, all transfers are processed instantly. If you need to move your funds in a faster manner, please use the instant SEPA payment (if supported by your bank). We always recommend that investors keep adequate funds on their EstateGuru virtual account to ensure not missing out on great investment opportunities as they get published.
What is Lemonway?
Lemonway is a payment service provider ensuring efficient and secure means for handling investors’ funds and transactions. Lemonway is regulated by the ACPR – Banque de France since 2012. EstateGuru is gradually moving investors to Lemonway, hence not all investors' accounts are currently in Lemonway but also in LHV Bank. Lemonway accounts are in the name of the beneficiary (investor or borrower) and they are opened automatically when you sign up and are verified on the EstateGuru marketplace. All money movements are initiated based on your instructions/activities on the EstateGuru interface.
Lemonway users receive a personal IBAN account ensuring full segregation of investors' funds. When making deposits to your virtual account, you need to transfer funds to your personal IBAN account in Lemonway. Similarly to regular deposits, all account data can be found from "deposit / withdraw" section.
What are Investment Strategies and how to make use of them?
Investment Strategies represent an automatic investment tool (evolution of Auto Invest) which enables you to establish the criteria of your desired investment portfolio and we will do everything else for you by ensuring allocation to suitable loans on the marketplace. Minimum investment amount is 50 EUR and you can reactivate, deactivate or change your strategy at all times.
How to set up your Investment Strategies?
To choose a strategy that will build your portfolio for you, select the “Invest” page from the upper panel while logged in and enable the feature. The investor has the opportunity to choose from a variety of criteria while seeing an overview of past loans and how many loans the selected criteria apply to. You also have the option to choose between 2 pre-determined strategies: Conservative and Balanced. More details can be found directly on the Investment Strategies activation page.
How will using Investment Strategies work for you?
The feature will make investments for you based on your selected strategic approach to building your portfolio. Either you choose the balanced or the conservative strategy or decide to build a fully customized strategy, the feature will make binding investments on your behalf. Investments will be made into both newly published and already available loans subsequently to activation of the Investment Strategy feature if the chosen criteria are met.
Can I still invest manually after enabling Investment Strategies?
Of course. You can choose to disable the Investment Strategies feature at any time and keep a close eye on your investments manually. You can also invest via Investment Strategies and manually simultaneously. You can easily activate or deactivate the Investment Strategies feature from the "Investment Strategies" page. It is important to keep in mind that all limitations and rules applicable for manual investments also apply for investments made through the Investment Strategies feature.
What are the available Investment Strategies?
Conservative investment strategy - This strategy represents the optimal balance between average interest rate, collateral value, and a low-risk approach. For investors who don’t mind being a bit more patient if it means their portfolio is extra secure.
Balanced investment strategy - Just like the name says, the approach here is tilted towards maximizing your returns while still keeping security at a premium, but with a slightly higher tolerance for risk. The perfect balance if the yield of your portfolio is your main aim.
Custom investment strategy - For the more experienced investor who knows their LTVs from their collateral value and their bridging loans from their development loans, this fully customizable strategy will hit the sweet spot. You’ll be able to set up Auto Invest to meet your exact criteria, adjust it any time you want to, and exercise total control over your investment automation.
You can read about the currently applicable loan criteria for each of the available Investment Strategy from the activation page.
Why my Investment Strategies invested a smaller amount than I have indicated in settings?
Increasing the Automated Investment Strategies investment amount over 50 EUR does not always guarantee that the investment is made to the respective extent. While the application endeavours to make investments in the amount you have set, in some cases the application may also calculate a smaller amount for the investment. The application prefers investors who have set 50 EUR as the investment amount, which means that the investments of such investors are drawn into projects first followed by investments of investors who have set a larger investment amount.
What is secondary market and who can use it?
The Secondary market is a feature through which investors can prematurely sell their investments, should they have the need for additional liquidity. The Secondary market can be used by all investors who are involved in EstateGuru’s investment opportunities. From the buyers' side – all registered and verified EstateGuru users are welcome to purchase investments from the Secondary Market.
How are returns divided among the seller and the buyer of an investment?
All returns are divided between the two parties based on their actual investment duration. Meaning that the seller is entitled to all interest payments made before they sell their claim, while the buyer receives all interest payments after they purchase the claim. However, the seller can choose to sell at a more expensive rate (up to the amount of unreceived interest), although such a sale is unlikely to attract a buyer. If the buyer purchases a loan that is in debt, meaning that certain penalties, indemnities or interest payments have not been done and the claim exists, then all claims and any potential proceeds will belong to the buyer. Once the seller has sold an investment, they have no future claims to any of the proceedings.
What are my obligations from using secondary market – what to keep in mind?
Investors need to keep in mind that all Secondary Market investments are binding and the same conditions apply as for all the Primary Market investments. An investor can sell their claims immediately after the funding process if the claim is from a Primary Market investment. If the claim is purchased from the Secondary Market, please be aware that a 30-day sales restriction applies.
How to use the secondary market feature?
If you wish to sell your claims, you can choose the claims from the "Portfolio" page by clicking the basket icon in the loan portfolio list. The seller can choose the price of the claim, hence also the return for both the seller and the buyer. The investor can only sell the entire claim, the claim cannot be halved or partially sold. All contracts are established in a manner that all previous contracts are handed over to the buyer, including all bonus contracts if applicable.
How much are the fees for using secondary market?
There are no fees for using the Secondary Market for the buyer. For the seller, a 2% transaction fee will be applied.
How is AROI calculated in secondary market claims?
The formula of AROI calculation is: Annualized return = Expected Earnings / Remaining Period * 365 / Principal Purchased
Can I cancel my secondary market bid? (for seller)
Yes, as a seller you can cancel your Secondary Market bid at any time, assuming that the investment has not been purchased yet. Please be aware that the bid will be automatically cancelled after 14 days, if the investment has not been purchased during this time period.
How liquid is the secondary market?
The liquidity of the Secondary Market depends heavily on the interest of the platform’s fellow investors. There is no guarantee that an investment placed for sale will be sold.
What is the Instant Exit program?
The Instant Exit program is a voluntary feature that can be used for immediate liquidity through selling the claims in an investor’s portfolio. When using the Instant Exit feature a fixed 35% discount on the outstanding principal amount is automatically applied. The Instant Exit feature is only available once there are sufficient funds in the Instant Exit pool and when the pool has not reached the pre-set exposure limits. Please be aware that the current feature has limited availability as the product is in beta-testing mode.
What restrictions apply when selling your claims via the Instant Exit feature?
As of today, the Instant Exit pool is limited and as a result certain limitations apply to ensure the needed diversity for the period of beta-testing the product. Limitations on the total pool of claims sold via the Instant Exit feature are as follows:
Maximum exposure into one loan in the total pool of funds - 5%
Maximum exposure into one borrowing company’s and/or representative’s loans - 20%
Maximum exposure into loans funded against one collateral property - 20%