frequently
asked questions

If you don't see the answer to your question here,
please contact us.

General


Why should I consider raising funds for my school?

Although we’re frequently told not to judge a book by its cover, state-of-the-art facilities and equipment are almost always the initial attraction to prospective pupils, their parents, and staff when choosing a school; and with the level of competition out there, it’s important that you invest in this as much as you can. Unfortunately, aspirations like new buildings and sports facilities can feel almost unachievable without investing in expensive bank loans or a lengthy donation campaign.

InvestMySchool is therefore helping schools across the UK to harness the power of crowdfunding – whether through peer-to-peer loans, solely through donations, or both combined - to see their development projects become a reality.

InvestMySchool offers all independent schools the opportunity to launch a donation only fundraising campaign. Schools that meet our eligibility criteria can also choose to accept loans, too, either by running a loan only campaign, or by accepting a combination of loans and donations from its community – which could significantly accelerate its fundraising goals.

Please see FAQ "What are the eligibility criteria to run a loan fundraising campaign?" for more information.

InvestMySchool offers you a totally flexible funding solution. We put you in control by enabling you to raise funds on terms that you suit you. Your school can choose to launch a donation only campaign, or to accept loans only, or to both collect donations and accept loans.

If the school is considering a loan only or combined donation or loan campaign, then it should consider the impact on its cashflow of loan repayments and assure itself that it can service any loan. It should also consider its own community and their likely preference to donate or lend.

Accepting both loans and donations offers the most flexibility, and could also accelerate its fundraising goals. And of course, any donations received will reduce the interest payable and therefore the APR versus taking, say, a bank loan for the whole funding requirement.

In order to run a loan campaign, a school or education company would need to be authorised by the FCA for peer-to-peer lending. The owner of InvestMySchool, Karadoo Finance Limited, is authorised for all crowdfunding services including peer-to-peer lending.

Of course, designing a webpage to encourage donations to a campaign is relatively straightforward. But running a fundraising campaign with InvestMySchool offers significant advantages in terms of how you raise money, and saving you and your colleagues’ significant time and money.

Because InvestMySchool is fully authorised by the FCA for all crowdfunding activities – including peer-to-peer lending - by partnering with InvestMySchool, all fundraising options are on the table; your school can opt to collect donations and accept loans from individuals and businesses. No other UK fundraising platform enables your school to choose exactly how you raise money.

With access to our highly automated, secure platform, InvestMySchool provides you with a comprehensive end-to-end service for your fundraising campaign:

  • To meet FCA, Inland Revenue and Charities Commission guidelines on fraud prevention, the ID of every donator or lender should be verified so that you know where your money is coming from. When an individual registers on our platform, we do this automatically for you - and at no additional cost.
  • You are provided with a suite of tools and media for your campaign. You can provide details of your school and its fundraising campaign and how you have chosen to accept contributions – donations, loans or even both. You can upload suitable images, and even a video, so that you can tell your audience how funds will be used.
  • We provide all the tools that you need to spread the word about your fundraising campaign:
    • We give you a bespoke campaign webpage with a unique URL so that your audience can find details of your fundraise easily.
    • Each campaign page includes a PDF leaflet that can easily be printed off and distributed with no additional work for you.
    • And we also give you a simple one-click button to spread the news of your campaign on all the main social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter.
  • Our payment gateway is from one of the UK’s leading providers, Sagepay, so that everyone can make donations and loan pledges safely and securely.
  • If you want to collect regular donations then your community can simply tick a box and we do the rest - no need for to set up cumbersome Standing Orders or costly Direct Debits.
  • For your assurance, all donations and loans are held in our ring-fenced client bank account at Barclays, in accordance with FCA guidelines.
  • InvestMySchool submits reports to the Inland Revenue and collects Gift Aid on your behalf - you don’t need to do anything.

If you choose to run a loan or a combined donation and loan campaign then all these services are also included in our fee:

  • Local authority, land registry and company searches and checks where required.
  • Preparation of a single bilateral peer-to-peer lending loan agreement as approved by the FCA. This is one loan agreement that effectively records and consolidates individual loans agreements from all of your lenders into one document.
  • Securitisation of the loan as required
    • Registration of any charge as applicable to include:
    • Land registry
    • Companies House
    • Charities commission
  • Holding of the charge as trustee on behalf of the lenders until the loan is fully repaid. This is in a dedicated and ringfenced Trust company, Karadoo Property Retentions Limited, identified as a Trust company to the FCA.
  • Release of the charge when the outstanding debt has been satisfied
  • Receipt of loan repayments by Direct Debit from borrower.
  • Distribution each month of capital repayments and interest to all lenders in the ratio of their individual loans.
  • If your lenders need their money back at any time, then our automated secondary market service means that your lenders can “sell” their loan parts to other investors at any point during the loan term. This includes the provision of a “ Certificate of Novation”, for the seller and buyer.

What is more, your campaign on InvestMySchool could be up and running in a matter of hours – you invest a little time and set up the campaign and we do the rest, leaving you free to carry on delivering an outstanding learning experience.

Yes. We make it simple for you to register on our secure website and your campaign could be ready to go in a matter of minutes.

No. Whilst your school or PTA does not have to be a registered charity, if it is then we can collect Gift Aid on any donations on your behalf - which could boost any donations by 25%.

There are two parts to the registration process and we require information for eac

  1. The individual who completes the registration on behalf of the school.
  2. InvestMySchool will undertake a simple check to verify the ID of the person registering the campaign on behalf of the school in accordance with government and FCA requirements. We do NOT carry out a credit check, and no entry will be recorded on your credit file. We do not access any personal data or information – we simply check that you are who you say you are. In order to complete this simple check, we ask you to provide:

    • Your full name
    • Your home address
    • Your date of birth
  3. The school on behalf of which you are registering a campaign.
  4. InvestMySchool requires some information in order to undertake requisite due diligence:

    • The type of organisation that you are registering on behalf of e.g. a school, an education company, or a PTA or Friends association
    • The school name, address and website
    • If an education company is selected then the details of that company, including name and address
    • If an education company is selected then the details of that company, including name, address and company number
    • If a PTA or friends association is selected then the name of that association
    • The Registered Charity number, if applicable
    • The company number, if registered at Companies House.

Whilst your school or PTA does not have to be a registered charity, if it is we can collect Gift Aid on your behalf - which could boost any donations by 25%.

Our secure platform makes it easy for you to upload your school’s logo, photos and appeal text to create a great looking webpage for your fundraising campaign. You can even provide a video to tell your audience about your school’s campaign.

You will need to provide:

  • A campaign name
  • The fundraising goal
  • How you will accept contributions i.e. donations, loans, or both.
  • If you choose to accept loans, then your community will need to know:
    • The interest rate you are offering to pay
    • The loan type, namely: a standard term loan, a deferred repayment loan, or a bullet loan
    • The length of the loan term
    • When repayments will be made (for a deferred or bullet loan)
    • The security offered – if any
  • To populate your campaign detail, the more information you can provide to tell your story, the better. This should include:
    • A description of your campaign and how the money will be used – up to 2,500 characters
    • Images – a main image, school logo, and a gallery of (for example) project images
    • A n optional link to a campaign video uploaded to Youtube (this isn’t compulsory and if you choose not to provide a video you can still launch your campaign!).

InvestMySchool should be able to tell you within one hour of your registration if your school is eligible to submit a Funding Request.

InvestMySchool will need to be satisfied that the school meets our minimum criteria in order to launch a loan only, or a combined donation and loan, campaign. This includes:

  • That your school has filed at least two years of accounts and is profitable.
  • Your school has an acceptable credit and failure score as provided by Dun & Bradstreet, a leading global business services information provider.

Once you have submitted all the required information and hit “submit” your submission will be reviewed within 24 hours and if considered suitable for listing, your Funding Request will be listed within the next 24 hours. The campaign is then marketed to parents and the wider school community, and even beyond.

Your school can choose who it reaches out to collect donations or accept loans, but typically it will be key stakeholders including parents, grandparents, and alumni, and the wider school community – in other words, those who already have an emotional investment in the school.

Your school can even choose to market its campaign to local, or not so local, businesses and also choose whether to accept contributions from general individual and institutional investors.

Our secure online platform allows them to offer to lend or donate part or even your whole Funding Request. Of course, people who invest in a loan to the school will be placing their trust in it, and will expect to get their money back.

how-it-works

Anyone! The more people that you tell about your campaign, the more likely you are to reach your target, and faster. Tell them how much you are looking to raise, and how the funds will be used and how they can contribute – whether that is a donation or a loan.

This useful mindmap could help you to idenitfy the breadth and depth of the school community to reach out to:

Mind Map

InvestMySchool provides you with all the tools to reach out to your school’s community as you choose. Your school will have its own webpage with a unique URL. We also provide you with a two-sided A5 PDF leaflet that can be printed and distributed by hand or post. Each campaign page has social media buttons that make it easy for anyone to tell their own network about the fundraising campaign or their contribution to it with just one click.

InvestMySchool provides your school with all the tools required to spread the message:

  • A dedicated campaign webpage with a unique URL
  • Instant one-click sharing across all the major social media platforms
  • A bespoke double-sided A5 leaflet to print off and share

Each school will have its own methods of communicating with its community and it is important that every means available is used. For example:

  • A weekly newsletter - whether that is a hard copy or email
  • A dedicated email, either direct or via a popular communication service such as ParentPay or ParentMail
  • Print the A5 leaflet and distribute via pupils, or post. There are plenty of online printing services. We have found www.Instantprint.co.uk to be competitive and fast.
  • A PTA or Friends association can be a useful conduit to spread the word too.
  • A telephone campaign to reach alumni using a service provider such as www.teleraise.com.
  • The local press – especially if you are seeking funds from the public, or local businesses
  • Rotary Clubs and Round Table groups, and the local Chamber of Commerce
  • Social media is especially useful – we provide the tools for your community to easily share the news of your campaign across all of the popular social media platforms - and even their donation should they choose to.

The more often the campaign is shared, the more likely the school will reach its target quicker.

Yes. In order to meet our obligations to HMRC and FCA, it is a requirement that reasonable steps are taken to identify all donators and investors. InvestMySchool uses an established business service provider to undertake ID verifications.

We do NOT carry out a credit check, and no entry will be recorded on anybody’s credit file. We do not access any personal data or information – we simply check that the individual is who they say they are. In order to complete this simple check, we ask for:

  • Full name
  • Home address
  • Date of birth

InvestMySchool provides you with all the tools to reach out to your school’s community as you choose. Your school will have its own webpage with a unique URL. We also provide you with a two-sided A5 PDF leaflet that can be printed and distributed by hand or post. Each campaign page has social media buttons that make it easy for anyone to tell their own network about the fundraising campaign with just one click.

InvestMySchool provides your school with all the tools required to spread the message:

  • A dedicated campaign webpage with a unique URL
  • Instant one-click social media sharing
  • A bespoke double-sided A5 leaflet to print off and share

Each school will have its own methods of communicating with its community and it is important that every means available is used. For example:

  • A weekly newsletter - whether that is a hard copy or email
  • A dedicated email, either direct or via a popular communication service such as ParentPay or ParentMail
  • Print the A5 leaflet and distribute via pupils, or post. There are plenty of online printing services. We have found www.Instantprint.co.uk to be competitive and fast.
  • A PTA or Friends association can be a useful conduit to spread the word too.
  • A telephone campaign to reach alumni using a service provider such as www.teleraise.com.

Of course, you may wish to seek donations or loans from the wider community. The local press, and social media groups are useful, and it may even be worth reaching out to the local Chamber of Commerce, and Rotary or Round Table groups.

The more often the campaign is shared, the more likely the school will reach its target quicker.

This depends on the type of campaign you set up – donation only, loan only, or a combination of donations and loans.

Yes, InvestMySchool provides a Q&A forum, where they can ask questions. All questions and answers are visible to all users of InvestMySchool.

A prompt response is both courteous and positive.

Yes. For example, if your campaign is funded quicker than expected and that there may be an opportunity to collect donations or accept loans beyond your original target, then just let us know and we can update your campaign page accordingly. Your campaign webpage and material must clearly explain how any funds raised in excess of your original target will be used.

By registering a crowdfunding campaign on InvestMySchool, the school has made a contractual commitment to ensure that all donations provided to the school’s crowdfunding campaign will be used for the purposes set out on the crowdfunding page and other campaign material. If you choose to collect donations or accept loans beyond your original campaign target then your campaign webpage and material must clearly explain how any excess funds raised will be used.

InvestMySchool believes in simplicity and value. We charge an industry leading 3.0% marketing fee of funds raised for ALL fundraising campaigns, irrespective of whether the campaign is donation only, loan only, or a combination of loan and donation. VAT is charged on the fee at the appropriate rate (Our marketing fee to registered charities should be zero rated for VAT).

For a loan only, or combined loan and donation campaign, InvestMySchool will ask for a deposit of £750 + VAT to be paid against this fee when you receive offers to fill 100% of your funding request. Please see FAQ’s “What is the £750 fee deposit?” and “When is the £750 fee deposit payable?

The balance of the marketing fee + VAT is deducted from the loan amount before the net balance is transferred to you so please make sure you take this in to account when considering how much to raise.

Please note that for commercial mortgages or loans secured on a property, InvestMySchool will instruct a property valuation. The borrower will be invoiced directly by the valuer for this cost.

There are no hidden charges.

InvestMySchool prides itself on providing the best service and welcomes any feedback, whether good or bad. If you have a complaint about InvestMySchool then we will always try to resolve it in the first instance. However, if you feel that we have not resolved any dispute to your satisfaction then The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is an agency for arbitrating on unresolved complaints between regulated firms and their clients. Full details of the FOS can be found on its website at www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk.

Karadoo Finance Ltd, the owner of InvetsMySchool, has put in place plans to ensure full continuity of services in the unlikely event that Karadoo Finance Ltd should fail as a viable commercial entity. In practical terms, this means that pre-existing loans will continue to operate as usual. Specifically, your school will continue to make the usual loan repayments to individual lenders. Likewise, in the event of a problem repaying to terms the processes will be followed as set out in FAQ’s “What if I am late with a loan repayment?” and “What if my school fails after funding?” In order to provide further assurance, and as required by the FCA of a fully authorised peer to peer lender, Karadoo Finance Ltd has made arrangements with an established and suitably authorised Financial Services provider to supervise the day to day operations of Karadoo Finance Ltd, and monitor the run off of all existing loans through to the end of their term.

Yes. We take our responsibility seriously and fully commit to the Fundraising Promise and the Codes of Fundraising Practice.

Karadoo Finance Limited, the owner and operator of InvestMySchool, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 777371).

Donation Campaigns – Donations Only or Combined Donation and Loan Campaigns


No. Whilst your school or PTA does not have to be a registered charity, if it is we can collect Gift Aid on your behalf that could boost donations by 25%.

Your school can choose to run a campaign to accept regular donations from its community. Donators simply insert the amount that they would like to regularly donate and confirm that they would like to make a monthly donation. Their bankcard is then debited by that amount each month. If they want to change the amount that they donate, or stop donations, then they can make those changes online.

If you or your PTA are a registered charity and can supply your charity and HMRC reference number, then we can collect any Gift Aid on your behalf. This can then be paid, along with any donations, directly in to your nominated bank account.

Yes, HMRC allows agents, nominees and collection agents to make repayment claims on your behalf.

Agents, nominees and collection agents can only claim for your charity or CASC if you’ve informed HMRC that they’re authorised to represent you.

You’ll need to tell HMRC that an individual or organisation is authorised to make a claim on your behalf by completing form ChV1. Save the application form (ChV1) on your computer and complete it on screen. Include the agent’s details in the ‘Changes to the nominee and collection agency details’ section. Then print it, sign it and send it to the address on the form.

Click here for more info

Yes. We make it possible for you to keep track of all individual donations and how much is being raised. We are unable to provide individual donator names.

Regular donations for on-going campaigns plus any Gift Aid are paid every month directly in to your nominated bank account. Where donations are being received for a specific project then funds will be transferred when the campaign is fully pledged.

InvestMySchool can extend your campaign term – simply advise of your extended deadline. Alternatively, you can choose to draw down any donations collected. Loan offers will be returned to the investors. Please note that by registering a crowdfunding campaign on InvestMySchool, the school has made a contractual commitment to ensure that all donations provided to the school’s crowdfunding campaign will be used for the purposes set out on the crowdfunding page and other campaign material.

Loan Campaigns – Loan only or Combined Loan and Donation Campaigns


f you would like to start a fundraising campaign please check that your school meets our basic eligibility criteria:

  • Your school should have filed at least two years of accounts.
  • The school should be profitable.
  • Your school must be able to demonstrate cash generation and profitability so that it can service the loan you require.
  • Your school will need to be verified as having a low risk of failure as rated by Dun & Bradstreet - a leading global business information provider.
  • Before your Funding Request is listed you are able to pay a marketing fee deposit of £750 + VAT. Please see FAQ “What is the £750 fee deposit?” Our marketing fee to a registered charity should be zero rated for VAT purposes.

InvestMySchool has partnered with a leading global business information provider - Dun & Bradstreet. They provide credit and financial information about most businesses in the UK, including the risk of any business failing in the following 12 months.

InvestMySchool has used their data to create five simple bands based on their forecast of the likelihood of failure. Five stars are awarded to companies with the lowest risk of failure and one star for companies with the highest risk of failure.

InvestMySchool will only accept Funding Requests from companies with a star rating of two or more.

The short answer is “it depends”.

Product Typical Purpose Security Loans From
General Loan Working Capital, Expansion Debenture over the Company £ 25,000
Asset Purchase Loan Plant, Machinery, Equipment Purchase Charge on Purchased Asset £ 25,000
Commercial Mortgage Acquire or refinance commercial property Mortgage over Commercial Property £ 25,000

InvestMySchool believes in flexibility. If your Funding Request does not fit in any of the boxes above, call us on 01225 312388 and we will do our best to help you.

Please note that a loan marketing fee of 3.0%+ VAT is deducted from the loan amount before the net balance is transferred to you. Please make sure you take this in to account when considering how much to borrow. InvestMySchool charges a competitive 3.0% marketing fee for any loan irrespective of loan type, term or amount. Our marketing fee to a registered charity should be zero rated for VAT purposes.

Each school can choose to market their campaign to the general public at their discretion

Yes. There are three main repayment models for a loan.

Term method – this is the most common business loan model where a borrower repays the loan in fixed equal monthly instalments over a set term. The first repayment is made a month after the loan is advanced.

Deferred repayment method – the borrower chooses to repay the loan in monthly instalments but defers the start of repayments. This may suit a situation where the loan is being used to build facilities that will generate additional revenue, but that additional revenue will be earned when the project is complete. Deferring the start of repayments could align cash in and outflows.

Bullet method – unlike a regular loan, the capital is not repaid in regular instalments but typically 100% of the capital is intended to be re-paid at a fixed point in time, along with the accrued interest. A borrower must have a plan as to how the capital will be repaid, and this must be presented in their Loan Request.

The borrower should carefully consider whether the repayment model of each loan meets their requirements, and consider how it will appeal to potential lenders.

Unique to Crowdfunding (aka peer to peer lending), InvestMySchool enables you to offer an interest rate that your school can afford from 0% upwards, and one that you think will be attractive to lenders.

When setting your interest rate, you should consider several factors including the school’s star rating, financial history, and the quality of your business plan, loan type and security offered. There is no scope for potential lenders to offer to pay you a different interest rate.

NOTE THAT UNLIKE OTHER CROWDFUNDING PLATFORMS INVESTMYSCHOOL DOES NOT MANDATE A MINIMUM INTEREST RATE. THAT MEANS YOUR LOAN IS NOT SUBJECT TO ARTIFICIALLY FORCED HIGH INTEREST RATES, GIVING YOU THE OPPORTUNITY TO GET THE BEST DEAL.

InvestMySchool believes that it is not in the school’s interest to manipulate a minimum interest rate as this artificially forces high interest rates.

InvestMySchool believes that the best solution is for you to choose an interest rate to pay that is affordable, but also attractive as an investment opportunity for parents.

InvestMySchool offers you complete flexibility to offer an interest rate that is affordable to your school and will also attract sufficient lenders to your funding request. Each school should undertake some simple benchmarking before setting the interest rate that it would like to offer its lenders. For example, check the interest rates that banks and ISA’s are currently offering, and have a look at similar campaigns that have successfully closed out on InvestMySchool in order to provide a simple benchmark. Ultimately it is up to your school to decide.

How are loan repayments made?

All repayments must be made by direct debit for both capital and interest. InvestMySchool will send you a Direct Debit mandate. This must be completed and returned before your loan completes.

There is no charge to submit an application and if your request is eligible and approved then there is no upfront charge for listing on InvestMySchool. When your funding request is successfully 100% pledged you will be asked if you would like to accept the loan offers. If you choose to accept then you will be asked to pay a £750 + VAT deposit (or the full marketing fee at 3.0% of the loan amount if that amount is lower than £750) against your 3.0% marketing fee. If you subsequently do not complete the loan for any reason e.g. you change your mind, then this is retained by InvestMySchool to cover our legal and administration costs incurred. If you complete the loan, then the 3.0% fee is reduced by the £750 deposit already paid. Please note that VAT is charged on the fee deposit (Our marketing fee to registered charities should be zero rated for VAT purposes)

There is no charge to submit an application and if your request is eligible and approved then there is no upfront charge for listing on InvestMySchool. If you are running a loan only or combined loan and donation campaign, when your campaign is successfully 100% pledged, you will be asked if you would like to accept the loan and donation offers. If you choose to accept then you will be asked to pay a £750 + VAT (our marketing fee to registered charities should be zero rated for VAT purposes) deposit against your 3.0% marketing fee.

Only after the full amount has been fully raised and the school accepts the loan offers.

Your school can choose to extend the campaign deadline – just let us know. If on the other hand, the school would prefer to cease the campaign, then all loans pledged by investors are returned to them. The school can choose to reconfigure and re-launch their campaign.

Firstly, congratulations! Secondly, there are a few administrative tasks and paperwork that will need to be completed and signed. InvestMySchool will liaise with you to complete this part. Finally, our solicitors will pass InvestMySchool a release document and your loan funds will be transferred to your bank account.

Our loan book management partner is notified immediately and will take action to work with you to get your repayments back on track. You will be liable for costs that will be added to the amount overdue. See T&C’s for more details.

The school and loan details are passed to our debt management partner, who will work with you and the administrators to realize the security in order to recover the outstanding loan.

Absolutely – and there are no early repayment charges.

General


What is crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is simply the process of getting a crowd of people to each contribute a small amount of money to fund a project. This could either be in the form of a loan or donation.

InvestMySchool connects individuals like you directly with Independent Schools that are looking to raise funds to deliver their development projects. These could be anything from new sports facilities to student accommodation or anything in between: working capital, assets finance, a property purchase or one-off costs.

Each school will set out the terms of their campaign, including how much they are looking to raise, how the money will be used and whether they are accepting donations or loans - or both. The terms of any loan will be clearly displayed.

Crowdfunding gives another means to raise capital, allowing a school to provide the best facilities for students and staff alike.

By giving a platform for the school community, be it parents, grandparents and alumni the opportunity to donate or lend directly, schools can potentially fund (and therefore deliver) their development projects faster, benefitting the whole school community – and at a lower cost than borrowing large sums of money from a bank.

Crowdfunding is

  • Fast
  • Flexible
  • Cost-effective

State-of-the-art facilities and equipment are often what attracts pupils (and their parents), and just as importantly, the best staff when choosing a school. It’s important that schools have the opportunity to deliver the development projects like new buildings and sports facilities that make a difference to the learning environment and experience of pupils and staff alike.

InvestMySchool is therefore helping schools across the UK to harness the power of crowdfunding – whether through peer-to-peer loans, solely through donations, or both combined - to see their development projects become a reality.

InvestMySchool offers independent schools to run a donation only fundraising campaign, or subject to meeting our borrowing eligibility criteria, a loan only campaign, or to accept a combination of loans and donations from its community. Each campaign page will clearly show whether a school is accepting loans and donations, or both, and you can choose to lend or donate accordingly.

The school’s dedicated campaign webpage will give details of how all funds raised will be used. We also provide a Q&A forum so that you can ask the school any questions that you may have about their campaign, and see any other questions from your peers and the answer provided by the school.

Zero. Zilch. Nothing. Unlike similar platforms InvestMySchool does not believe that you should be charged to lend or donate your money – and you keep 100% of your interest earned on any loan.

The receiving school is charged our competitive marketing fee of just 3% on the aggregate gross funds raised, whether by loan or donations (including Gift Aid). And unlike some other donation platforms, there are no additional bank or legal charges to pay.

InvestMySchool believes that due diligence is a critical part in our decision to list a fundraising campaign and in your decision to invest.

Firstly we verify the ID of the individual registering the campaign on behalf of the school. Basically we check that they are who they say they are.

There are three layers of due diligence undertaken on the school itself:

Firstly, we work with Dun and Bradstreet, a leading global business information provider to verify the background of the borrower and ascertain a credit rating and a failure score - the risk of the applicant business failing in the next 12 months. Only when a business has passed this initial test does a loan request go to the next stage.

Next, our Advisory Panel reviews the funding request before it is published on InvestMySchool.

The third and most important part of the due diligence process is the part that you play. InvestMySchool provides the opportunity for you and your fellow lenders and donators to ask questions directly to the school through our platform. All Q&A's are displayed, giving you even more information on which to base your decision.

Yes. In order to meet our obligations to HMRC and FCA, it is a requirement that reasonable steps are taken to identify all donators and investors. InvestMySchool uses an established business service provider to undertake ID verifications.

We do NOT carry out a credit check, and no entry will be recorded on your credit file. We do not access any personal data or information – we simply check that you are who you say you are. In order to complete this simple check, we ask for:

  • Full name
  • Home address
  • Date of birth

Download this leaflet which you can email or print, or let us know who to reach out to, and we will do it for you.

leaflet

Security is priority. The InvestMySchool platform has been carefully built to protect you and your data against security threats. Many of our processes go above and beyond what a bank might do. We also do many more compliancy checks than the banks are required to do.

InvestMySchool prides itself on providing the best service and welcomes any feedback, whether good or bad. If you have a complaint about InvestMySchool then we will always try to resolve it in the first instance. However, if you feel that we have not resolved any dispute to your satisfaction then The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is an agency for arbitrating on unresolved complaints between regulated firms and their clients. Full details of the FOS can be found on its website at www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

Karadoo Finance Ltd, the owner of InvestMySchool, has put in place plans to ensure full continuity of services in the unlikely event that Karadoo Finance Ltd should fail as a viable commercial entity. In practical terms, this means that pre-existing loans will continue to operate as usual. Specifically, your school will continue to make the usual loan repayments to individual lenders. Likewise, in the event of a problem repaying to terms the processes will be followed as set out in FAQ’s “What if I am late with a loan repayment?” and “What if my school fails after funding?” In order to provide further assurance, and as required by the FCA of a fully authorised peer to peer lender, Karadoo Finance Ltd has made arrangements with an established and suitably authorised Financial Services provider to supervise the day to day operations of Karadoo Finance Ltd, and monitor the run off of all existing loans through to the end of their term.

Yes. We take our responsibility seriously and fully commit to the Fundraising Promise and the Codes of Fundraising Practice.

Karadoo Finance Limited, the owner and operator of InvestMySchool, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 777371).

Donation Campaigns – Donations Only or Combined Donation and Loan Campaigns


Yes, you can choose to make a single donation to any campaign.

Yes, we make it simple for you to register on our secure website.

If a school is running a campaign to accept regular monthly donations you simply click a box to confirm that you would like to make a regular donation and your chosen bank or credit card is charged each month.

You can make a one off or regular donation using any Visa debit or credit card, or Mastercard debit or credit card.

Yes, by logging in to your account you can cancel your regular donation by selecting “Repeat Donations” and clicking “unsubscribe”.

We transfer regular donations and Gift Aid for regular campaigns directly to the school on a monthly basis. Where a school is running a project specific campaign then we transfer funds when the fundraising target for the campaign is successfully pledged.

Yes, InvestMySchool provides a Q&A forum, where they can ask questions. All questions and answers are visible to all users of InvestMySchool.

Gift Aid is a tax relief boosting donations by an extra 25% on donations made by UK taxpayers.

If the school or PTA is a registered charity then we can collect Gift Aid and pass it directly to the school. Simply click the box to confirm that you are a UK taxpayer and we do the rest.

When you donate, you’ll be asked to confirm whether or not you are a UK taxpayer. Please note that Gift Aid can only be reclaimed on donations made by individuals who pay UK income or capital gains tax at a rate at least equal to the amount reclaimed on their donations in the current tax year.

If you pay tax at the higher rate, you can reclaim tax relief on your gross donation at 20% (i.e. the difference between the higher rate of tax at 40% and the basic rate at 20%). Simply print out a copy of your donation history and attach it to your tax return.

To keep things simple, your Gift Aid status will be saved for the next time you donate. If your status has changed and you are no longer a UK taxpayer, then please contact us and we will change your Gift Aid status.

nvestMySchool offers two options to the school. It can either extend the campaign term to continue to accept donations towards its campaign goal, or it can choose to draw down any funds raised. Whilst it is very important to note that your donation is a gift to the school, please note that by registering a crowdfunding campaign on InvestMySchool, the school has made a contractual commitment to ensure that all donations provided to the school’s crowdfunding campaign will be used for the purposes set out on the crowdfunding page and other campaign material.

Yes. For example, if the school’s campaign is funded quicker than expected and that there may be an opportunity to raise donations beyond the original target. The school must clearly explain how any funds raised in excess of your original target will be used on its campaign webpage and other material.

By registering a crowdfunding campaign on InvestMySchool, the school has made a contractual commitment to ensure that all donations provided to the school’s crowdfunding campaign will be used for the purposes set out on the crowdfunding page and other campaign material. If the school chooses to accept donations beyond the original campaign target then it must clearly explain how any funds raised in excess of your original target will be used on its campaign webpage and other material.

Loan Campaigns – Loans Only or Combined Loan and Donation Campaigns


InvestMySchool is helping schools across the UK to harness the power of crowdfunding – whether through peer-to-peer loans, solely through donations, or both combined - to see their development projects become a reality. We cut banks out of the loop and match investors directly with established British independent schools who want to borrow money at a competitive rate to fund essential projects. And by choosing to make a loan to an independent school, not only do the school and its community benefit, but also your savings could work harder for you.

A. Schools are under increasing pressure to provide the best facilities and opportunities for pupils. By lending to the school, you are helping them to achieve those goals and therefore giving pupils the best chance to succeed.

Because of relatively recent changes in financial regulations and technology developments leading to the emergence of so called alternative finance, or peer-to-peer lending, this sort of investment is not restricted to just wealthy individuals or financial institutions, but almost anybody can participate.

If you are an individual aged 18 or over with a UK bank account then you can apply to register as a lender.

Corporate bodies, or institutions, can apply to register to lend. InvestMySchool may undertake the same ID verification checks on the principals behind the entity as it does for individual lenders.

No. InvestMySchool prefers to offer a level playing field to all investors, and lenders can pledge to lend against each loan on a strict “first come first served” basis.

InvestMySchool offers all independent schools the opportunity to launch a donation only fundraising campaign. Schools that meet our eligibility criteria can also choose to accept loans, too, either by running a loan only campaign, or by accepting a combination of loans and donations from its community – which could significantly accelerate its fundraising goals.

There are three core loan products available to a borrower and for an investor to lend against. The key characteristics are as follows:

Product Typical Purpose Security Taken
General Loan Working Capital, Expansion Debenture over the Company or Charge over the business assets
Asset Purchase Loan Plant, Machinery, Equipment Purchase Charge on Purchased Asset
Commercial Mortgage Acquire or refinance commercial property Mortgage over Commercial Property

The loan product is always made clear on the borrower’s campaign page.

There are three main repayment models for a loan.

Term method – this is the most common business loan model where a borrower repays the loan in fixed equal monthly instalments over a set term. The first repayment is made a month after the loan is advanced.

Deferred repayment method – the borrower chooses to repay the loan in monthly instalments but defers the start of repayments. This may suit a situation where the loan is being used to build facilities that will generate additional revenue, but that additional revenue will be earned when the project is complete. Deferring the start of repayments could align cash in and outflows.

Bullet method – unlike a regular loan, the capital is not repaid in regular instalments but typically 100% of the capital is intended to be re-paid at a fixed point in time, along with the accrued interest. A borrower must have a plan as to how the capital will be repaid, and this must be presented in their Loan Request.

The loan type is clearly displayed on the campaign page.

What are the eligibility criteria to launch a loan fundraising campaign or a combined loan and donation campaign?

  • It should have filed at least two years of accounts.
  • It should be profitable.
  • It must be able to demonstrate cash generation and profitability so that it can service the loan
  • It must be verified as having a low risk of failure as rated by Dun & Bradstreet - a leading global business information provider.

To help guide investors when assessing investment opportunities on InvestMySchool we provide a 'Star Rating' for each school seeking to borrow. Based on information recorded at Companies House and the predicted likelihood of failure of each school as provided by Dun and Bradstreet, a leading global business information provider. The higher the star rating is then the lower the likelihood of failure of a school within the next 12 months (note that InvestMySchool will not accept loan requests from schools with a single star rating).

InvestMySchool has worked with Dun & Bradstreet to estimate failure rates over the following 12 months following the point of borrower application. The rating is for the immediate following 12 month period from the point of application, and assuming there is no change in a borrower’s rating, circumstances or the external economic environment then it is assumed that the same failure rate would apply to each borrower for subsequent 12 month periods, so the ratings can be pro-rated for any length of loan. We have developed a simple star rating to help guide you on your lending decisions.

Estimated Failure Rate per Band over a 12 Month Period
★★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★ ★★
One Year 0.15% 0.30% 0.50% 0.6%
Two Years 0.30% 0.60% 1.00% 1.20%
Three Years 0.45% 0.90% 1.50% 1.80%
Four Years 0.60% 1.20% 2.00% 2.40%
Five Years 0.75% 1.5% 2.50% 3.00%

The star rating enables you to consider the risk of failure of the borrower when calculating your likely return from a loan or a portfolio of loans. A company with a higher star rating has a lower predicted likelihood of failure within the following 12 months than a company with a lower star rating.

Note that these are only an estimate risk of a business failing, and are provided for your consideration in decision making only. No guarantee is offered or implied.

If a business fails there is an element of risk that it may not be able to fully repay its loan and the loan becomes what is known as a bad debt.

When a loan becomes a bad debt, InvestMySchool works with the borrower and our legal team to recover the debt and repay the loan. Depending on the circumstances of each borrower and the status of the security taken, the amount recovered could vary from zero to 100% of the debt owed by the borrower.

InvestMySchool engages an expert law firm to make sure that robust security is in place on each loan. The security offered by each borrower is clearly documented with each loan request.

Past performance should not be seen as an indication of future performance. Likewise, any predictions or forecasts provided by schools should not be seen as a guarantee of future performance.

The gross interest earned is the interest rate offered by the borrower. There is no scope to counter offer so you should decide if the interest rate offered by the borrower meets your requirements. Note that you should factor in the risk of bad debts in to your calculations – see “How will the star rating impact my return?” and “How is my interest taxed?”

All of it. 100%. Unlike similar platforms InvestMySchool does not believe that investors should be charged to lend their money. There are no fees to lend, and you keep 100% of your interest earned. Note that interest is paid to you gross and you must account for tax depending on your individual circumstances.

The interest that you earn through InvestMySchool is paid to you gross. No tax is deducted at source. You must account for tax depending on your individual circumstances. If you are unsure about any aspect of your tax circumstance you should seek advice from a qualified accountant, tax specialist, an independent financial adviser or any other suitably qualified professional.

he Personal Savings Allowance was introduced from 6 April 2016. That means that everyone who pays income tax at the basic rate of interest can earn up to a total of £1,000 of interest in a tax year free of income tax. A higher rate taxpayer can earn £500 of interest tax-free. This applies to interest earned through any investment, not just InvestMySchool. The personal savings allowance is not available to additional rate taxpayers i.e. those with a taxable income in excess of £150,000 in a tax year.

Please seek advice from your tax advisor, or see the HMRC guidance here:

www.gov.uk

The borrower can only accept the offers made by you and your fellow lenders when the campaign target is met. On completion of the loan, there is a legally binding individual loan between you and the borrower, and the same for your fellow lenders.

InvestMySchool collects capital and interest repayments from the borrower in accordance with the terms of the individual loans by direct debit on a monthly basis, typically one month after the loan completes. These are then distributed promptly to the individual lenders as per the terms of your individual loan (see Lenders T&C’s for full details).

InvestMySchool is notified immediately that a repayment has not been made to schedule and our debt recovery partner will proactively work to get the borrower back on track. If it becomes clear that the borrower cannot pay to the agreed terms the debt collection proceedings will start with immediate effect to recover the loan. This will include realising any security. The borrower will incur all costs.

The full borrower and loan details are passed to our debt management partner, who will work with the borrower and the administrators to realize the security to recover the outstanding loan.

Yes, you need to have funds in your e-wallet to make an offer to loan to a borrower. When you make an offer the balance on your investor account is reduced by the amount of your offer. This is ringfenced until the campaign is completes, or if the school withdraws the campaign then it is available to withdraw.

Funds are transferred by debit card using our secure portal.

Funds added to your InvestMySchool e-wallet are stored in a ring-fenced Barclays Bank PLC bank account and remain there until you use or withdraw them.

Easily, via your account dashboard. When you make a withdrawal request, we validate your identity and bank account. The funds will then be transferred from the wallet to your bank account. This can take up to 48 hours.

Yes you can offer an individual loan for sale in the secondary market. The price will be be the par value of that individual loan that has not been repaid by the borrower as shown in the “My Loans” section of the lender's area of InvestMySchool. InvestMySchool will charge a fee of 0.25% of the remaining capital amount of the loan part sold.

When making your investment decision please bear in mind that there is no guarantee that there will be a buyer for your loan part.

Yes, you can buy an individual loan that has been listed in the secondary market by another lender. To buy an individual loan the lender's account must hold cleared funds for the price.

Whilst crowdfunding investments may offer attractive returns there is a chance that like any other investment including bank deposits (don’t be fooled by the PR), some degree of risk that you could lose your capital exists.

In any case, NEVER invest more than you can afford to lose.

InvestMySchool will undertake to make every effort to recover a default by a borrower. See “What if a school is late with a loan repayment?” However, the chances are that from time to time a business will fail and it may prove impossible to recover all or part of the loan by calling in the business assets held as security on that loan. InvestMySchool will not repay your capital and you may lose your investment. You should only make investments with money you can afford to lose.

Some peer to peer lenders retain a percentage of your return in a “Reserve” or “Provision” Fund to help cover your losses in the event of a borrower failing – note that we are not aware of any Peer to Peer Lender guaranteeing that 100% of your losses would be covered.

At InvestMySchool, we believe that the introduction of such a fund simply adds unnecessary complexity to the transaction, and reduces transparency. There could be too much held in the fund so more of your earnings are retained than is necessary, or too little retained, and your loss not covered in any case. We believe in putting you in control of your investment decisions and offering full transparency.

HMRC has published a document “Income tax relief for irrecoverable peer to peer loans Final Guidance” in March 2016 that sets out the intention to allow the offset of capital losses against other P2P income. Income_tax_relief_for_irrecoverable_peer_to_peer_loans_FINAL_GUIDANCE__2_.pdf

If you are unsure about any aspect of your tax circumstance you should seek advice from a qualified accountant, tax specialist, an independent financial adviser or any other suitably qualified professional.

You will not be able to claim compensation under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme for losses incurred from investments of any type made through InvestMySchool.

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