Voice of the Industry

How Salt Edge helped Keysafe speed up tenant vetting from 48 hours to 4 minutes

Monday 12 December 2022 10:06 CET | Editor: Alin Popa | Voice of the industry

Stephen Winyard, CSO at Salt Edge, tells the story of Keysafe, the tenant referencing company that turned to Open Banking, using Salt Edge's solutions to accept tenants based on automatically aggregated bаnk data.


Keysafe is a UK-based tenant referencing company founded in 1999. The company was set up to reduce the risk of rent arrears by checking the tenant before they sign the tenancy agreement, and this remains the company’s main objective today. 

The company has always performed well above expectations – pioneering new approaches to tenant vetting and attracting a roster of demanding, nationally recognised clients. Achieving and maintaining such results involves Keysafe continuously improving its processes. 

Addressing the challenges of the archaic tenant vetting processes

The traditional tenant vetting process typically consists in talking to previous landlords, verifying the tenant's income, running a credit check, and more cumbersome steps. Previously, tenants had to provide bank statements and payslips physically. Even if recently it has been more common to accept digital copies of main documents, the process of obtaining and aggregating this information is still time-consuming. In a fast-moving rental market, any delay could mean a tenant searching elsewhere and thus, a lost customer. 

As Keysafe has always been committed to delivering outstanding service and expert advice, doing lengthy checks that risk delaying new tenancies was never an option. 

Turning to Open Banking was a game changer

In 2019, KeySafe turned to Salt Edge, becoming the first tenant referencing company to market with an Open Banking-powered product, independent of credit referencing agencies. Landlords have been accepting tenants based on automatically aggregated bаnk data rather than traditional checks.

Salt Edge’s Account Information enables Keysafe to access bank data in a compliant way without the hurdles of getting their own AIS licence from the FCA. Keysafe verifies the tenants’ financial situation by connecting to their banks in different countries, including the UK, France, the US, Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and many others. The Account Information solution incorporates the technology for transaction categorisation and merchant identification, enriching the bank data by taking unclear and cluttered transaction details and turning them into meaningful insights. 

'We’re delighted to be able to partner with Salt Edge. This is a new generation of tenant vetting, made possible thanks to Salt Edge harnessesing the technical potential of Open Banking. Retaining our position as the most reliable tenant vetting organisation for Letting Agents and landlords is of paramount importance. This partnership allows us to do just that while at the same time driving the industry forward to provide faster and more accurate results,' commented Gareth Fowler, Managing Director at Keysafe.Simple, secure, and digital tenant verifications: from days to minutes.

Simple, secure, and digital tenant verifications: from days to minutes

Open Banking delivers relevant account details, for example, identifying whether someone spends more than they earn or has outstanding financial behaviour and capacity to pay. Equally, it can be spot trends, such as whether someone’s income has increased consistently over time, or the reverse - if they haven't received any income in several months.

Bank-level security and end-to-end encryption are used to establish the connection with the tenant's bank. Their bank only shares pre-agreed information with KeySafe, and the tenant will never be requested to share any banking credentials. It’s one-time access, so once the data is received, the connection is instantly closed, and Salt Edge does not have any more access to the account information.

Stephen Winyard, CSO at Salt Edge, tells the story of Keysafe, the tenant referencing company that turned to Open Banking, using Salt Edge's solutions to accept tenants based on automatically aggregated bаnk data.


With Salt Edge’s Open Banking service, the verification process is essentially instant, helping to reduce the average response time to approximately 4 minutes from the historical 48 hours. KeySafe currently has 83% of applicants connect to Open Banking via Salt Edge.

Using bank data aggregation also increases the tenants’ approval chances, since Keysafe’s service allows an applicant to select many forms of income for landlords to consider. Besides, the financial situation is presented fully, with a 360-degree view of real-time data that can be 100% relied upon. As the process is digitised and no additional documentation, such as bank statements and payslips, is required, the verification is smoother and completely nonintrusive for tenants. 

Stephen Winyard, CSO at Salt Edge, tells the story of Keysafe, the tenant referencing company that turned to Open Banking, using Salt Edge's solutions to accept tenants based on automatically aggregated bаnk data.


'Open Banking is about simplifying access to data to replace obsolete processes with better digital experiences. So, making all the finances simpler is the ultimate goal of Salt Edge, and we are very proud that our Open Banking solution helps people in different sectors, this time - landlords and tenants. More businesses finding their clients, more people finding a home, with Salt Edge guiding the way - this is more than just fulfilling,' said Stephen Winyard, CSO at Salt Edge.

About Salt Edge 

Salt Edge – a financial API platform with PSD2 and Open Banking solutions. The company has two main vectors of activity: enabling third parties to get access to bank channels via a unified gateway and developing the technology necessary for banks to become compliant with the directive’s requirements. ISO 27001 certified and AIS licensed under PSD2, the company employs the highest international security measures to ensure stable and reliable connections between financial institutions and their customers. The company is integrated with 5,000+ financial institutions in 50 countries.

More information: www.saltedge.com

E-mail: sales@saltedge.com 

About Stephen Winyard

At Salt Edge, Stephen is building sustainable relations with financial institutions to help them implement the best open banking strategies. His mission with Salt Edge is to grow its global client base and help drive the company’s growth targeting new and existing markets. Stephen has a longstanding experience of over 25 years of co-founding and managing several disruptive and complex technology companies.

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Keywords: Open Banking, data sharing, financial data, API, PSD2
Categories: Banking & Fintech
Companies: Salt Edge
Countries: World
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