Meg Myers is an early borrower turned lender. She’s become an angel lender, helping people who are advancing their careers through professional programs or career betterment programs. She chats about what she looks for when lending money, why it’s valuable for Realtors, and her overall experience with WeFinance.
Lender Corner with WeFinance is a regular series that looks at some of our angel lenders, why they lend, and what they look for when looking for opportunities.
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You borrowed money to complete your Realtor license. Do you think WeFinance would be useful for other aspiring real estate agents?
I don’t think I would have been able to look into real estate as a career if I didn’t have the backing from WeFinance, so I definitely think it would be helpful. There are a lot of upfront costs that keep people from starting in the field — about $5,000 in classes and fees just to even get started.
As they’re going through the licensing process, they’re probably realizing just how long it will be before they get their commission check. Given that the role is 100% commission based, WeFinance is very useful for new real estate agents while they’re still training and building up their client base. I wish the school I took my classes through brought up WeFinance!
WeFinance loans didn’t just help me get started in real estate – it was an additional push to do well because I had so many friends (and some strangers) literally invested in my success.
What gave you the push to move from a borrower to a lender?
I started making money in real estate but I’m not making the kind of money where I can make a big investment in the stock market without taking significant risk. These microloans are a good way to invest money and get a great return in a short period of time. Borrowing was a great experience; lending has been too.
At this point, lending ends up being a significant chunk of income I get every month just in the loan repayments.
At it’s core, I love that everyone can personalize their campaign for their needs. It’s amazing that someone can say that they want a loan that’s x years, with a y%, and z month deferral.
Do you have any tips for people considering lending on the platform?
It’s super easy after the initial setup (connecting a few accounts). Once it’s done, everything is automated. Lending takes seconds once you read the stories; it’s just a click. For me, it’s a great return since I can make 4% to 10% — it’s better than what you’ll get at a bank account and it’s probably less risky than putting it anywhere else.
Right now, my repayments from my loans don’t come in on the same day of the month, so every few days I’ll get a notification that someone’s made a payment — it’s like getting a nice letter in the mail!
What do you look for when you lend money to someone?
I look at the mutual connections (if any) and at the repayment terms — the terms have to make sense and be worth it to me. I also look at whether their story makes sense; are they doing something with the money that’s going to have a return?
I’ve lent money to people I don’t know but as long as they’re going into a career betterment program, I know that there’s going to be a safe bet of a return on that investment.
What’s your personal process for lending? Do you start with the stories or the terms?
Every time there’s a new batch, I’ll go through and look through the terms of the loan to see if it’s something that’s worth it.
I think it’s a great platform with the way that you can set up your repayments. There are just some repayment terms that aren’t as attractive. Obviously, the higher the interest rate and the more money I’m going to make in the long run, the more I’m interested. It’s not really appealing if I’m loaning $100 and I only get $104 back AND it’s deferred for a year. The ones that are starting repayment within 6 months and have a nice percentage return are the ones I investigate further and read the stories, testimonials, and endorsements.
I haven’t seen anyone on the site where I wouldn’t lend them money. Whether I do is usually just dependent on the terms — I’ve felt really good about all the campaigns I’ve contributed to.
Any tips for borrowers creating a campaign (other than a great interest rate)?
Just convince me that there’s going to be a return on the investment. When I was borrowing, it was hard to guarantee that I was going to make it as a Realtor since there’s no guarantee of an income even if you get the license. In my story, people took it on faith that I was going to do well.
The more that you can prove that the money is going to advance your career or your earning potential, the better I feel lending to you.
Is there anything you’d like to see on the platform?
One thing I don’t like is that the loans don’t fund unless they reach the minimum. From my view, if someone’s willing to pay me 10% on my $100, I’d love to click the button and not have to worry about whether their campaign hits a minimum.
As a past borrower, it would have been amazing to be able to thank some of my lenders or to give them updates on my professional progress.