Throughout this blog I will be breaking down a list of VAT finance lenders across the UK. VAT finance is a specialist form of lending that companies in the UK use to fund quarterly HMRC VAT bills. Historically, it was mainly professions such as solicitors, accountants, and architects that would finance VAT. Today, all sorts of UK companies fund their VAT for a whole variety of reasons.
So where do you find a list of VAT finance lenders in the UK?
VAT Loans are a key finance company in the UK, funding VAT for our clients. We have searched for such a list and as far as we can see, there is no definitive list of VAT finance lenders out there.
However, luckily for you, we have independently compiled a list of UK VAT Finance lenders from a deep dive on Google. Hopefully this blog will be helpful to those seeking VAT funding exploring their options. So, let’s get into it, we can split the list into two parts.
Firstly, there are the funders, the actual finance companies that lend the money.
Premium Credit Limited is by far the largest company operating in this space. They call themselves ‘The number one premium finance company in the UK and Ireland.’ With 2.1m customers and processing 24 million direct debits per year, we as an independent company will agree, they are the largest. Please note, only a small fraction of their business is VAT funding, most of the other funding is for insurance premiums, golf club memberships, school fees, train season tickets etc. It maybe such you already deal with them on the insurance side or in a personal capacity. However, contacting them for VAT funding will be more challenging, it is a lot easier to go via a broker such as ourselves.
There are other funders in the market such as Shawbrook, White Oak, Federal Capital, Time Finance, who fund VAT. Again, some of these companies will not deal with an end user directly. For those that do, it can sometimes be a bit challenging to navigate around who to speak to and how to deal with them.
Secondly, there are brokers (the middle men) that offer VAT funding.
VAT Loans have scoured the market analysing who is our competition on Google and have stumbled across 23 other companies. Three of these seem to be ‘internet only’ business types. Although, they would much rather be referred to as ‘Fintech’ companies. In summary, great websites, but lacking that personal touch of human interaction. We have not checked their accounts, but as a guess, they will be losing money.
All the others are brokers who advertise the fact they offer VAT funding for UK companies. We have individually reviewed all these companies. On average, they employ between two and ten people and offer a range of finance facilities for companies. For the record, they all seem decent companies, many of them have been trading for a long time. So that’s always promising.
Competitive HMRC VAT funding UK
The market for VAT funding in the UK is competitive. As you can see above, anyone can put ‘VAT Loans’ into Google and up comes a list of companies that will help you. And from what we can see, most companies are offering competitive repayment terms.
Another thing to bear in mind as a customer is that our funding partners limit how much we can earn in commission. In summary, all of us intermediary brokers are swimming in the same pool trying to win the same business. We all have to be competitive. And there is nothing wrong with a bit of healthy competition.
Best UK VAT funder?
Stating who is the best UK VAT funder is very difficult. Rates are competitive, loan agreements are often worded the same. From what we see, there are only two differentiators:
- Credit acceptance – this is where one funder rejects a deal and another one accepts it. Having a wider panel of UK VAT funders does help.
- Whilst some people are happy and content just to undertake business via email, other companies – especially those new to funding VAT – will wish for some more human interaction.
We cannot comment on other UK HMRC VAT funding companies with regards to their level of service. However, what we can say is that to our customers, service level is of paramount importance.
- Phone conversations are important. We must answer the phone and not just communicate via a chat facility or email.
- Speed and urgency are the number one priority. Most of our business comes in the third week of the month. We then have to arrange credit, send out documents, and get HMRC paid by the 7th of the following month. (Over 50% of our clients will leave their VAT funding to the last minute.)
- Understanding the process and ensuring that a VAT loan is put in place quickly is often at the top of a clients’ agenda. Having the detailed knowledge from doing many VAT loan deals in the past does help. Interestingly, when we look at our 23 competitors, most of the smaller independently owned companies do have the in-depth knowledge. We have not tested the ‘fintech’ companies, but our gut feel is they will not have a great a knowledge pool compared to the likes of us.
We hope this blog proves useful to you in your decision making. Should you have any questions on the VAT loan process, creditworthiness, or anything else, we would be happy to help. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch, give us a call on 01494 611 456. Or send an email to [email protected]. Or, if you have any questions about VAT in general, you can always visit the HMRC website here.