- Web Design
- Design Systems
The UK’s leading online family mortgage broker
WhenJune 2020 - Present
How we helped first time buyers scale the property ladder with UX design
Tembo Money are one of the most exciting fintech startups in the mortgage market. They even picked up two awards at the 2022 British banking awards, including Best Mortgage Broker.
Tembo help first time buyers get on the property ladder by engaging their family’s existing assets. We worked with them to supercharge their branding and UX design.
That ethos of keeping things in the family and removing debt from younger buyers in a challenging property market, is something we were 100% on board with. We also know that mortgages are an area ripe for disruption so couldn’t wait to get stuck in.
Their customers have praised the easy to use online portal and website that we had a hand in creating. And since they went live, the fintech company have helped many first time buyers get on to the property ladder.
Helping hundreds of people get their feet on the property ladder each year
Going beyond the brief
Rejigging Tembo’s brand wasn’t necessarily a part of the brief.
When we took them on as a client they had just started. These mortgage experts had an idea for a product that could release equity from a relative’s house to increase a deposit.
The brief was to make it look sexy. Which is good because that’s our bread and butter. But we wondered if something more was needed. Standing out to their target audience meant more than just changing the way they looked. Initially the design had the typical purples and blues of the tech world, and the language was full of technical and financial jargon.
For first time buyers, the process is stressful enough and being confronted with a brand-new language, as is often the case, can be unhelpful. So, we wanted to change that from the off.
Changing the way we speak
Do you know what a Joint Borrower Sole Proprietor mortgage is? No worries if not – not a lot of people do.
What it boils down to is a mortgage which uses two parties’ incomes on the mortgage application whilst recognising a single owner. They’re available from a lot of providers but it’s not something many people are aware of.
This is the basis for one of Tembo’s main products, the Income Boost, which allows you to borrow more, by adding a fraction of someone else’s income to your own. It’s essentially the same thing but it’s communicated in a way that people can understand quickly.
The Deposit Boost on the other hand enables buyers to release equity from a pre-existing property to gift or boost a deposit which can then be paid back over time if desired. This makes buying a house more accessible in places where it is otherwise unattainable. Not many people can front £10,000+ without some help.
There’s a lot of technical financial wizardry going on behind the scenes, but the customer doesn’t need to know this. They just want to know how it improves their situation.
Making it about family
The central theme behind any changes we made, was the idea of family chipping in to help, making house buying more attainable and less stressful. There’s a reassuring togetherness and community feel to it.
This needed to be reflected in what people saw throughout the process of using their products online.
Jargon was out. The key theme of family would be repeated. But the way it was presented also changed.
If you visit the Tembo site today, you’ll notice the warm, vintage style typeface Recoleta and soft pastel colours.
The site is littered with visuals that speak of home. Pictures are framed in arched window shapes, which is also reflected in their logo. The borders of pages mimic the rustic nature of plaster or paint being applied to a wall.
The way that your numbers are calculated is also simple and clear. You can quickly find out what you can afford and what your payments will be, clearly broken down and visible, not hidden in a lengthy PDF document.
So, the whole site is inviting, relatable and friendly and the user experience is intuitive and accessible.
We think this is why so many people find it so easy to use.
Why we love working with Tembo
When we kicked off with Tembo, Andy, one of the Bang co-founders, was buying his first home.
We were right in the mix of the very process that mortgage disruptors like Tembo are taking on. There’s no question that we believe in the product.
Money should be a tool, not an obstacle. Tembo turns money into a tool to help you buy a house. Not everyone will be able to make use of their product, we appreciate that, but it provides some way for the older generation to help newer ones get something that is increasingly inaccessible.
Tembo, we’ve loved being part of your journey. We can’t wait to see where it goes next.