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ANOUAR ADHAM, CFA: Rent-to-Own Property Platform That Brings Investors and Home Buyers Together

28 February 2022


CrowdToLive® (CTL) The rent-to-own property platform brings investors and home buyers together in debt-free partnerships. Through the platform, home buyers can own their homes without incurring debt whilst investors can reap the rewards of the housing market without the hassle of tenant management.

Operating with the highest standards of governance and transparency from their headquarters in London, CTL offers world class debt-free partnerships underpinning the needs of both homebuyers and investors through an efficient client-focused approach.

CTL was established in 2016 with a shareholder blend of individual, institutional, as well as high-net-worth investors. CTL works on expanding into the GCC, Continental Europe and North America.

Regulated by UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), CTL is part of Virgin Start Up Programme, Barclays Eagle Labs, London & Partner Accelerator Programme, Qatar Fintech Hub and Natwest Growth programme.

Tell us about yourself?

Co-founder and serial entrepreneur, Anouar has over 15 years of experience within the financial sector, working with international banks in Europe, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Helped set up and get licensed of an Islamic Asset Management company in Malaysia for BNP Paribas.

Head the Asset Management team in London for Qatar Islamic Bank with the launch of several innovative investment products raising over US$600Mio in 3 years. Anouar is a CFA holder and has an MBA from Imperial College London.

Anouar has also an MSC from Clermont Ferrand University (France) as well as certifications from Harvard and MIT in private equity and platform business respectively. I love finance and the positive impact that it can have on people’s life when it’s done with integrity, transparency and care.

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself? 

It takes years of hard work and stamina to become an overnight success.

What problem does your business solve?

Problems associated with INVESTORS:

  • The residential market is difficult to access on a larger scale, expensive to source and high ongoing maintenance costs.
  • Short average rental periods in the UK leads to frequent void periods and an increase in returns volatility.
  • UK Residential requires dedicated expertise.
  • High management and maintenance costs on residential property reduce yield attractiveness.
  • Diversification is difficult to achieve without a large investment.
  • Limited ethical or Sharia-Compliant solutions.

Problems associated with HOMEBUYERS:

  • Bank mortgages are the only financing products available.
  • Mortgages barriers and prerequisites are high. Banks typically only lend 3.5-4x income and require high credit scores.
  • Mortgages’ financial risks are very high over a long period of time difficult to bear in periods of economic turbulence.
  • Banks have a very streamlined process but if your profile does not fit their many criteria, it is difficult or expensive to get debt financing. As we all know, life is anything but standard for a larger part of a population.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

Solution to overcome INVESTORS’ problems:

  • Fully scalable. Our platform allows for a very efficient sourcing
  • Higher net yield and due to reduced management & maintenance costs.
  • No vacancy. Returns volatility is reduced.
  • Potential capital gain
  • Inflation-adjusted returns
  • Limited maintenance liability
  • Limited management costs
  • Reduced income volatility
  • Diversification

Solution to overcome HOMEBUYERS’ problems:

  • Secure long-term tenure
  • Reduced barriers of entry
  • Flexibility of staircasing
  • Not a debt product.

What is your magic sauce? 

Through our platform, buyers can own their home without incurring debt whilst investors can reap the rewards of the housing market without the hassle of tenant management and a reduction of the major buy-to-let related costs.

We are the only platform that offers non debt based products for residential property financing.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

CTL has been at the forefront of fintech innovation for over five years with its unique business model. It is now being amongst the very best of UK fintech talent, demonstrating the creativity and innovation of London’s fintech ecosystem.

We are looking to expand internationally and after breaking ground in North America in 2021, we are looking to expand in the GCC. We would like to become the international leader of non-debt based financial solutions.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

As a double-sided platform, we need to constantly rebalance each side of the platform higher and therefore are in a constant balancing exercise.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

The concept can be summarised in the following:

We are building an ecosystem around the business so we are quite keen to work with the financial and non-financial institutions to offer the best value proposition to our users and reduce the stress of buying and financing a property.

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