Two months after my first two $25 loans at Kiva, 50% of the money has already been paid back. It has to be noted that you cannot actually withdraw or reloan these funds until after the loan term is complete. In my case this means 3–12 months, i.e. I should be able to reuse those funds by the end of the year.
It really would be cool to earn some money while lending it to Kiva. Actually Kiva is planning to do so, according to Premal Shah in the Venture Voice interview (highlighings made by myself):
I think it would be exciting to let people earn a rate of return where they were financially indifferent between Kiva where they are changing somebody’s life, and their bank account (on a risk adjusted basis). I think that is possible.
I know that for some people it may sound ethically questionable or even absurd wanting to make money out of “charity”. But from a economically point of view you have to face reality: Every dollar you own is in stiff competition with lots of purposes you could use the money for. If Kiva would provide financial incentives, Kiva would have a much larger negotiation power under this stiff competition, and ultimately more money would be loaned to Kiva-entrepreneurs. And imagine that just 50% of the money laying around unused on bank accounts would be used for Kiva-purposes. It would change the world!
If you haven’t loaned any money via Kiva yet, please check it out with a $25 loan. It’s awesome!