WHAT IS CROWDFUNDING: Meaning, Uses, Advantages & Disadvantages

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Crowdfunding is a growing alternative to more conventional fundraising mechanisms for small businesses. A crowdfunding campaign entails requesting monetary contributions from many people, including those who know you well (such as friends, family, neighbors, and customers), in order to finance a venture. Microfinancing, to which crowdfunding is sometimes compared, has been existing for quite some time in its own form. However, the more recent variant of gathering a number of individual crowd funders together has gained traction over the past decade and is expected to climb at an annual rate of 18% until 2024, Opens overlay. Online channels and social media have helped to enhance the appeal of crowdfunding by connecting business owners and supporters. The piece will cover everything you need to know about crowdfunding in real estate, its advantages, and disadvantages in modern business.

What Is Crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding refers to the practice of soliciting a large number of individuals to make small monetary contributions over a short period of time, typically a few months, in order to finance a certain project or cause. Because crowdfunding is conducted online, it is often facilitated by social networks, making it simple for backers to spread the word about a particular cause or project among their own social circles.

Crowdfunding can be used by anyone to support anything: a good cause, a creative endeavor, a business venture, educational costs, or even a vacation.

How Does Crowdfunding Work?

In most countries, there are limits on who can invest in a startup and how much they can put in. These rules, like those that limit participation in hedge funds, are meant to prevent ordinary people from gambling away their life savings. Investors in startup companies run a high risk of losing their initial investment because of the prevalence of business failures.

By appealing to the general public for financial support, crowdfunding has allowed startups to raise hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars from a wide variety of investors. Anyone with a good idea can take advantage of crowdfunding to present it to a group of potential backers.

One individual who sought funds for the development of a novel potato salad recipe stands out as the recipient of one of the more hilarious projects. Despite having a goal of only $10, he was able to collect $55,000 from 6,911 backers. One can choose from hundreds of different initiatives and invest as little as ten dollars in each one. Funding platforms make money by taking a cut of the total amount donated.

What Are the Types of Crowdfunding?

There are as many different kinds of crowdfunding as there are different types of cash raising for companies at varying stages of development. Your product or service and your desire for expansion should guide your choice of crowdfunding platform. Here are the different types of crowdfunding:

#1. Equity Crowdfunding

Although being the tiniest part of the crowdfunding pie, equity crowdfunding has the potential to revolutionize the way average people invest their money. True investments in privately held enterprises can be made possible through equity crowdfunding. Several approaches to equity crowdfunding can be found on platforms like AngelList, CircleUp, and OurCrowd.

When compared to traditional equity financing methods, equity crowdfunding is less heavily regulated. Crowdfunding helps businesses to issue up to $1.07 million in securities without registering with the SEC, while conventional procedures limit enterprises to issuing only $500,000 in securities. 1

Furthermore, Crowdfunding that offers equity only allows for so much capital to be put in by any one person. There are restrictions based on the investor’s wealth and income. If your yearly income or net worth is less than $124,000, you are eligible to invest up to $2,500 per year in equity crowdfunding. You can invest up to 10% of your annual income or net worth (whichever is greater) over $124,000. 

#2. Rewards-Based Crowdfunding

People make financial contributions to your company through a crowdfunding model known as “rewards-based crowdfunding” in exchange for some “reward,” most often some aspect of the good or service that your business provides. In spite of the fact that this strategy offers backers a reward, it is still generally considered to be a subset of donation-based crowdfunding because there is neither a financial return nor an equity return. Because it enables business owners to incentivize their contributors without incurring much additional expense or selling ownership stake, this strategy is a popular option not only on Fundable but also on other popular crowdfunding platforms, such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo.

#3. Peer-to-Peer Lending

Have you ever extended a little loan to a loved one? This is essentially how crowdfunding sites like Lending Club and Prosper work. That way, borrowers can get their hands on cash without going through the banking system. Those who are ready to take on some degree of risk in order to make loans to others now have the ability to do it with the click of a mouse.

#4. Real Estate Crowdfunding

Sites that specialize in real estate crowdfunding take elements from both traditional crowdfunding and traditional REITs. Fundrise, RealtyMogul, and CrowdStreet are just a few of the crowdfunding platforms out there. Investors put up modest sums in exchange for a stake in a building (often commercial real estate).

#5. Donation-Based Crowdfunding

Donation-based crowdfunding refers, generally speaking, to any type of crowdfunding campaign in which investors or contributors do not receive any form of financial return. Disaster assistance, charitable causes, non-profits, and medical expenses are only some of the most common uses of crowdfunding to raise money.

What Is an Example of Crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is sometimes used to help artists create new works; for example, you may donate to your favorite band’s next album’s production via crowdfunding. They put together a Kickstarter website for the next album, explaining the broad strokes of their plans for it. Like many other supporters, you’ve pledged $10 to the cause. You’ll get a digital download of the finished album in exchange.

With a crowdfunding campaign, it’s common to provide incentives in tiers. If you donate $10, you may receive a download link for the album; if you donate $20 however, you’ll receive a vinyl copy of the record in the mail.

Do You Pay Back Crowdfunding?

Not to worry about getting payback. Although it’s important to fulfill the expectations of your supporters on Crowdfunding, it’s more accurate to think of crowdfunding as a grant than a debt. On crowdfunding platforms, it is not common practice to request interest or return of any kind.

What Is Crowdfunding in Real Estate 

Real estate crowdfunding is a method of raising funds that is quite similar to crowdfunding generally. A large number of small investors combine their funds to purchase real estate. Crowdfunding sites like Crowdbase make it simple for anybody to locate and finance promising real estate projects without having to consider such factors as the size of their initial investment, the cost of renovations, or the potential for rental income.

Historically, the first investment in real estate was large, often in the tens of thousands of dollars. So, only extremely wealthy people could afford to invest in this promising asset class. Crowdfunding has made it possible for individuals to spend as little as $100 on real estate.

Additionally, crowdfunding is a popular way to get funds for creative and community-beneficial real estate initiatives. Renewable energy, eco-friendly infrastructure, and the upkeep of historic structures all fall under this category.

How Does Real Estate Crowdfunding Work?

Mortgage rates are near record lows, making buying investment property an attractive option for those who want to build or diversify their wealth. Nonetheless, a mortgage from a lender like a bank or credit union is typically necessary for people looking to buy real estate. As a result, these financiers may need to lay down a sizable initial sum, as well as continue making substantial monthly payments to cover their basic living costs. Buyers are responsible for the ongoing care and repair of investment properties, as well as the payment of any related costs, including but not limited to property taxes and utilities.

Real estate crowdfunding, on the other hand, allows investors to pool their money through fintech or crowdfunding sites to invest in real estate and make a return. Internet-based investment options usually require a few hundred dollars to start. Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) and other financial vehicles, which own and operate real estate investments, receive funds. These properties include houses, apartments, condos, retail, malls, hotels, offices, and more. Crowdfunded investments are private, unlike many publicly traded REITs. These REITs also distribute dividends.

In addition, investors can buy exclusive private market property assets from crowdfunded real estate businesses. Due to their higher risk, they also offer better returns than publicly traded REITs. As with any private investment holding, it’s crucial to conduct your research and not overextend yourself financially. Real estate crowdfunding is usually used to diversify and enhance one’s financial assets while keeping a balanced portfolio of stocks, bonds, and other equity investments.

A Variety of Investment Options

Crowdfunding real estate allows two distinct forms of investments, each with its own set of risks and potential rewards:

#1. Debt Real Estate

Debt investors are similar to a bank in that they provide funding for real estate projects by lending money to sponsors. Depending on the terms of the investment transaction, debt investments typically offer stable, periodic payments until maturity. Loan rates might range from 3-15%, depending on the perceived risk of the project. The capped nature of the returns means that you won’t benefit from any significant appreciation in the value of the underlying property. Although equity holders have a greater chance of profiting from a company’s liquidation, debtholders have a higher priority in the case of insolvency.

#2. Equity Real Estate

When you invest in a firm or a piece of real estate directly, you become the owner. These investors are exposed first to any losses but have the possibility for endless gains. Equity holders might expect to reap profits so long as market rent rates and/or property prices rise. On the other hand, let’s say rents and/or property values have dropped to the point where the asset must be sold. There would be a substantial risk of loss for equity holders if that happened. Investment in equity is more precarious than in debt because of equity’s junior status.

What are the Pros and Cons of Real Estate CrowdFunding?

Like any other type of real estate investment, crowdfunding for properties can be both profitable and risky. It’s crucial to weigh the pros and cons of similar sites and investments before putting money toward a crowd-funding real estate project.


  • Reduces the stress that property owners and landlords typically experience
  • Costs are low both initially and in the long run, making this an attractive alternative to the more conventional forms of real estate investing.
  • The returns are usually higher than those of more conventional real estate investments
  • Enables property owners, perhaps, to increase their wealth through diversification
  • Provides entry to one-of-a-kind property developments and opportunities.


  • A certain level of financial stability or “accreditation” (depending on the platform) may be needed for some users to be considered “investors.”
  • Certain crowdfunding platforms may charge investors administration or consulting fees
  • It is difficult to immediately sell assets or divest them.
  • All dividends received by a Participant are subject to taxation.
  • Several platforms and projects are still in their infancy and, as a result, lack a robust track record upon which to develop.

What Are the Risks of Crowdfunding? 

Crowdfunding initiatives have sprung up all over the world and all over town as a result of the proliferation of the internet and social media in recent years. You may be familiar with the concept of using the internet to solicit donations or loan applications in order to finance a new venture. You should be aware of the nature, risk profile, and regulatory status of such crowd-funding initiatives before investing in or participating in them. Crowdfunding activities may seem appealing because of the large rewards they could theoretically provide, but you should constantly keep in mind the associated risks. Here are some of the common risks involved in crowdfunding:

#1. The Danger of Stock Diminishing and Not Being Easily Sold

Investments made through equity crowd fundraising may or may not have a secondary market. It could be tricky to put a price on the equity itself. In certain cases, however, investors may have a hard time getting out of their commitments, and in others, they may be forced to sell at a loss. Dilution of issued shares’ value is possible if more shares are issued.

#2. Criminal Activity

Due to the potential for money laundering and other criminal activity using crowdfunding sites, authorities may take action, such as suspension, to prevent them from operating. In addition to securities laws and regulations, crowd crowdfunding may be governed by additional sets of rules depending on the particulars of the campaign.

#3. Digital Safety

Due to the predominance of online platforms, investors partaking in crowdfunding run the danger of being targeted by hackers. Cyberattacks can take several forms, including infrastructure overload, account confusion, identity theft, and data exfiltration.

#4. Fraud Risks

Crowdfunding operations carry the danger of financial fraud, such as investors being duped into purchasing worthless financial products or investments due to the anonymity of some crowd-funding platforms and the lack of transparency. In such a case, however, potential investors stand to lose everything if this occurs.

#5. Disparities in Knowledge and a Lack of Transparency

Due to the lack of transparency and the anonymity of some crowd financing platforms, investors may find it challenging to get all the facts they need about their loans and investments. The platforms may not provide complete or accurate information, so investors may make decisions without knowing much about the project, company, or borrower profile in which their money is being invested.

Certain crowd-funding sites may not be very transparent, for instance, in regard to the valuation of investment because they may choose to hide relevant data (for instance, about historic default rates or costs). Even after joining the crowd financing platform or making an investment, the investor may not be made aware of all the potential dangers. Hence, prospective investors should be cognizant of the fact that they might not be able to learn everything there is to know about the company or the borrower.

What Is Crowdfunding Campaign?

A crowdfunding campaign can be thought of as a formal presentation to the many users of the website. It’s a win-win since they get additional information about the product or service you’re introducing. The campaign streamlines all of the details about your company, like its history, to a level that is understandable by potential investors.

The primary goal of every crowdfunding campaign is to expand the customer base of the company seeking funds. It also aids in spreading the word about their company. Millions of potential backers visit crowdfunding sites like Crowdcube and Indiegogo every day in search of the next big thing. Your campaign’s supporters can look at these sites, engage with you and each other, and spread the word about it.

Furthermore, the ability to centralize all fundraising activities is a critical aspect of any campaign. It is now unnecessary to seek out funding on an individual basis, owing to the campaign. With this method, you may deliver your content online in a way that is more user-friendly for people, especially those using smartphones. When you use crowdfunding to raise money, you can put that time and energy into really running your business.

Can I Crowdfund on My Own? 

Absolutely yes, you can host your own crowdfunding website or use one already in existence to collect donations.

With a self-hosted strategy, you can use any current website to launch ad campaigns. To embed the campaign into your website, simply insert a small amount of HTML code onto the page. Instead, with a platform strategy, you can easily host all of your campaigns in one place. Even if you don’t know how to code or create websites, you can still make changes to your Atlas website using the pre-built admin panel.

Crowdfunding Advantages and Disadvantages

Crowdfunding, or microdonations, is a method of supporting a business or other endeavor by soliciting many individuals to contribute a tiny sum. It’s a newer method of business funding, but it’s gaining in popularity, especially among startups and smaller enterprises. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of crowdfunding for small businesses. Also, HOW TO GET INVESTORS: Complete Guideline For Startups.


#1. It’s an Efficient and Simple Method of Getting Funding Quickly.

Crowdfunding can help you get the money you need for your company quickly and easily. As opposed to the months or even years it can take to secure financing through more conventional means like bank loans or venture capital, you can acquire money in as little as a few weeks. In addition, if your campaign is successful, you will have the capital you need to expand your company.

#2. It’s a Fantastic Method for Putting Your Product or Service to the Test in the Market

To put your product or service to the test in the market, crowdfunding is a fantastic option. Demand for your product or service is a sure sign that it will be successful if investors are prepared to put their money into it. Also, if you run a successful campaign, you’ll know for sure that people want what you’re selling.

#3. It’s a Great Way to Meet Prospective Clients and Business Associates

Networking with prospective clients and business associates is another benefit of crowdfunding. Connecting with people who show interest in what you do can lead to long-term gains for your company.

Crowdfunding may be the best choice if you need to raise money for a startup or small business. Many companies are drawn to the strategy because of the low risk involved and the quick results. And if you can get the word out and make some connections, it may be a powerful instrument for expanding your company’s reach.


#1. You’ll Have to Put in Some Effort to Get the Word Out About Your Campaign

You need to put some effort into advertising your crowdfunding drive if you want it to be successful. It’s possible that doing so would prevent you from focusing on other, more productive parts of running your company.

#2. This Could Lead To You Losing Command of Your Company

While crowdfunding could help you attract investors, it could also force you to cede control of your business. Potential shareholders have financial interests in the firm and expect a profit.

#3. Incentives May Be Necessary

It’s possible that offering incentives, like prizes, maybe a good way to get more people to contribute to your campaign. These incentives can be expensive and may not always contribute to the success of your firm.

Crowdfunding Sites

You can launch a business with the help of one of the many internet crowdfunding sites. There are a number of great crowdfunding platforms out there, but here are four that can help you expand your business.

  • LendingClub
  • Indiegogo
  • Kickstarter
  • GoFundMe

What are the Suggestions for Effective Crowdfunding Campaign?

While there’s no foolproof method for crowdfunding, there are three essential steps you may take to increase your chances of success.

#1. Make Sure Your Goal Is Attainable

Don’t get ahead of yourself; only crowdfund what you really need. Even though you might be able to collect more money than expected, it would be pointless if you failed to collect at least that amount. When a project achieves 30% of its goal, it is successful in more than 90% of cases.

#2. Comply With Your Word

You should try your hardest to fulfill your promises of compensation on schedule. Those who care about you have given you their support; now it’s up to you to repay them. If something out of your control prevents you from fulfilling your obligations, be forthright and let your backers know as soon as possible. Far more so than if you simply closed up shop, they will be understanding.

#3. Prioritize the First Two Days

Your crowdfunding campaign’s first 48 hours are pivotal. It’s fair to say that the launch itself is the most crucial step. Your momentum will increase and carry you far in this campaign if you get off to a strong beginning.


It’s crucial to prepare well before making any kind of investment. Understanding the crowdfunding campaign’s business model and the potential downsides is crucial. While starting a business with such an endeavor can be exciting, it’s crucial to keep in mind that not every company will be successful. The investor must be willing to take on the risks associated with these investments and must have a reasonable expectation of the return on their investment.

Crowdfunding FAQs

Which crowdfunding site is best?

Indiegogo is the best site. However, it is the best option overall because it has successfully helped fund over 800,000 projects throughout the world since 2008.

Can you lose money crowdfunding?

Yes. You can lose money crowdfunding. There is a potential for monetary loss with any kind of investment. The possibility of losing one’s investment is the main danger of crowdfunding. When it comes to potential rewards and losses, crowdfunding is at the very top of the risk scale.

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