JustUs has announced that it will now lend to borrowers deemed as key workers.
The peer-to-peer lender said that it has decided to selectively accept loan applications from people or businesses who fit that criteria.
It is listing a £15,000 guarantor loan to an NHS worker on its platform later today (15 May), which will be used to consolidate more expensive credit.
“We will be taking baby steps over the coming months and I anticipate we will not be firing on all cylinders until September time,” Lee Birkett, founder and chief executive of JustUs, said in an email to investors.
“You will be pleased to know that we are still functioning without fault as a ‘key worker’ status business and we will be re-introducing furloughed team members now the government have accepted part time furloughing is a no-brainer.
“Your support has been amazing during this terrible time, and we look forward to us all coming out of the crisis stronger, healthier and prepared to deal with the unknown future in a positive and constructive manner.”
Birkett has been very vocal in urging the Treasury to use funds from P2P lending platforms to support businesses hit by Covid-19.
He said he believes that the sector likely to receive the most government support will be property construction, as this is “the engine room of the economy”.
Brikett added that JustUs has a number of deals in the pipeline, is securing up-to-date physical open valuations and will not be offering any loans above 60 per cent of the current open market valuation.
“As a platform, we are very conservative with our underwriting and this stands us in good stead during this crisis,” Birkett told investors.
“With 95 per cent of our loanbook backed by solid property, we are well positioned to come out of the lockdown better than many other P2P platforms, many of whom unfortunately are likely to fail due to the large percentage of unsecured lending on their platforms.”