Lendermarket Stars series ask successful investors, as well as financial bloggers and influencers to share their investment journeys. We have developed Lendermarket Stars series for all of us to learn something new from success stories.
This time we had an opportunity interview Jesus Arias, investor and bloger, owning TodoCrowdlending blog.
Jesus, tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?
Of course! Engineer by background, I worked as a production manager and other managing positions in the industrial sector for over a decade, living in several countries and meeting lots of different people, cultures and projects along the way… Until one day, almost five years ago now, I decided to quit.
The truth is that I had always been passionate about investments and personal finance, it was like a fire burning deep inside that needed to emerge somehow. That was mainly the reason why after doing an MBA and seeing the world in my late twenties and early thirties while working as an engineer, I decided to end my traditional career and start pursuing my goals as an investor and communicator, sharing my investment experiences and focusing on crowd investments in particular, which ultimately led me to create my blog, TodoCrowdlending.
What were the reasons that made you start your investment journey?
As mentioned earlier, I have always been fascinated by the investment world, I even remember buying my first stocks as a teenager saving the allowance my parents gave to me over the course of many months. Initially, I was just investing out of curiosity and fun, and of course, I made a lot of mistakes, but later on, I started to become obsessed with the Financial Independence concept and I began thinking long term and developing my own investment strategy and portfolio.
How did you hear about Lendermarket?
I first heard about Lendermarket back in 2019, just a few days after your launch, I believe. After all, being in the know about the latest platforms in the crowdlending business is part of my job, and when I learned that a new platform was going to open its doors offering loans from one of the most prominent and best reputed Loan Originator in Europe (Creditstar) I just couldn’t resist and -in fact- I was one of the very first users to open an account with you guys.
What made you deposit in Lendermarket at first, and what keeps you here as a constant investor?
From the very beginning, Lendermarket has offered loans from a Top Class Loan Originator like Creditstar at one of the highest net annual returns in the buyback P2P lending business, showcasing one of the best risk/reward ratios of the market in my opinion… All of this coupled with a very easy to use interface and great customer service. It is definitely not easy to find a platform that ticks all these boxes at the same time nowadays.
Do you recommend others to invest in P2P?
All investors must make their own decisions, so I will never recommend investing in P2P or any other specific asset… Although of course I can give my personal opinion 🙂 In my opinion, P2P investments are a valuable asset to include in a balanced portfolio as a complement and support of other more conventional / mainstream assets such as stocks and bonds.
Among the advantages I see in including a moderate percentage (i.e. 10%) of P2P assets in a global portfolio are the low-entry barrier requirements -which reinforces positive investment habits-, the ability to generate cash flow at regular intervals, the attractive risk / reward ratio and the decorrelation from traditional assets, which provides an extra in terms of diversification.
What are some of the recent trends in the investment world (or more specific P2P) that investors should keep an eye out for?
At a global level, I think right now inflation is the name of the game… which means that if you are not an investor you are basically doomed! No matter how much you earn in your daily job, no matter how much you save… If you don’t have a portfolio, a plan to consistently beat inflation in the long term, chances are your savings will erode and evaporate over the years. Specifically in the P2P niche, after the Covid-19 and Russia-Ukraine war crisis I am clearly seeing a process towards the survival of the fittest, where only the most trusted and robust platforms that offer excellent service are the ones that are progressing and thriving in a complex macro-economic environment.
I am keeping an eye out for the aggregation solutions that would help us crowd-investors to manage several / all our platforms in an integrated dashboard… There are several projects in development, but this is still something that has not coalesced into a fully functional solution, and it is still eagerly awaited by many Investors. I am also looking forward to seeing new assets and typologies in P2P / crowd investments. I really think there is a great market and demand for legal crowdfunding, art investing crowdfunding and other alternative assets.
What would you say to your younger self, whose investment journey is about to start?
1) Better start the journey today than tomorrow. Don’t be lazy or doubtful and take action NOW!
2) Don’t be afraid to make (controlled) mistakes, as it is the best way to learn.
3) Don’t try to outsmart the market, try to detach yourself from the noise.
4) Short term is for gamblers… Always think long term.
5) Learn from everyone, but don’t follow blindly or delegate. Find your own investment style, make your own decisions and build your own portfolio.
If you could give any advice to someone starting out with Lendermarket, what would it be?
I see Lendermarket as a partner in this journey we talked about before. So, my advice to a new Lendermarket investor would be the same as in all good relationships: just go at your own pace and aim for the long haul.
What’s the best way to reach FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) in your opinion?
In my opinion, in order to succeed in reaching FIRE, first of all you have to start investing in a systematic and methodical way early (as soon as possible!) and second, you have to (really) commit yourself to this goal. I mean, this is not a transient trend, this is not a side-project… This should be your ultimate goal, the dream you pursue every day since you get out of bed. It may sound a bit radical, but I really think this is the only way to get the long-term focus and mental strength it requires.
Last but not least, leave a question for our next interviewee to answer!
I am always curious to know this from a fellow investor… What was your biggest mistake investing (and what did you learn from it)?
What do you think about the interview? Share your thoughts in the comments!
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