West One Loans targets £1bn of short-term lending in 2023

West One Loans is targeting more than £1bn in short-term lending this year as it looks to build on the records is set in 2022. 

The lender has set out ambitious growth targets for 2023 with bridging and development finance aiming to drive lending higher as market demand continues to rise. 

Short-term leading at West One Loans soared in the 12 months to December as total completions rose 13% year-on-year to reach £915m, its latest data shows. 

The development finance and bridging teams delivered record origination levels and are now setting their sights on surpassing the £1bn target in 2023. 

Tom Cantor, Head of Bridging of West One Loans, said: "Demand for bridging lending remains high across all elements of our proposition. 

"Whether it's developers looking to bridging finance to exit build projects, homeowners looking for funding to deliver major refurbishment projects, or anything in between West One is ready, willing and able to supply the funding.

"As one of the few bridging lenders in the market to lend both regulated and unregulated, and the capability to lend up to £30m or more, on referral, we really can offer solutions to just about any bridging situation."

During the last calendar year, total bridging completions rose 12% on the previous 12 months, while development finance experienced a 20% uplift. 

Assets under management also rose significantly with the development finance team reporting a 37% increase and bridging experiencing a 27%  rise. 

During the final quarter of 2022, the development finance team celebrated a major milestone as it surpassed £500m in lending since launching in 2018.

The target was reached with the completion of a £15.3m facility for the acquisition and development of 51 apartments and an office block in West Norwood, South London. 

In total over the past five years, West One Loans has contributed to the development of more than 1,500 homes across the UK.

In addition to the growth in short-term lending last year, West One also delivered its highest ever level of origination for BTL and second-charge. 

The lender's strong performance contributed to parent company Enra Specialist Finance achieving record-breaking in 2022. 

Overall group lending performance totalled nearly £2.0bn and assets under management across the group rose by nearly 40% in the year. 

Guy Murray, Head of Development Finance of West One Loans, said: "Demand for our development finance product has grown quickly over the past five years and we are very proud of what we have achieved to date. 

"We have built a short-term lending proposition that provides developers with certainty of finance from site purchase through to development of the site. 

"Brokers and their clients have confidence in our products and value the quality service we provide. In a relatively short space of time, we have helped fund hundreds of development across the UK and lent more than half a billion pounds."

Stephen Hogg, Chief Operating Officer of Enra Specialist Finance, added: "Short-term lending is a very important part of our business and I'm delighted to report that we lent more than ever before last year.

"We have set another ambitious target in 2023 and with our hard-won knowledge and experience of lending through different financial cycles, I fully expect us to hit it. 

"As a business we are extremely well capitalised, well-funded and the recent growth in our short-term lending shows just how robust we are. 

"We look forward to building on the success of the past 12 months and continuing to provide reliable funding for developers and property professionals through all market conditions."

Published in The Intermediary | March 2023

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