Can you explain Dynamo as if you were explaining it to my mother?
I imagine your mum compares her options when her mobile contract is up. She should do the same with her mortgage. By switching, the average person can save up to £300 a month. But we know it’s really hard to understand what is the best mortgage for you and what is the best deal for you. There’s a lot of friction. Dynamo’s mortgage experts make it super easy for you to find the best mortgage and to make the switch. We’ve put the easy bits online, and you get personal advice from a human. And we don’t charge you a penny.
What was the “eureka” moment that led to the creation of Dynamo?
Senior executives from the UK’s largest mortgage broker and a UK digital venture builder met at an event and got chatting about the benefits of a digital channel for mortgage customers who don’t want to have to pay fees or make face to face appointments to get mortgage advice. That was the beginning of Dynamo and the joint venture between Countrywide and Blenheim Chalcot.
You said there’s a lot friction getting a mortgage. No one wakes up thinking “today is a great day to remortgage”. How is Dynamo planning to change people’s perceptions?
Our job is to help you understand in 60 seconds how much you can save by comparing your mortgage options. In a month it’s real money, over 35 years it can be the most important financial decision in your life.
We’ve heard so many stories of terrible experiences of three-hour phone calls with bank advisors only to find out they can’t give you a mortgage because of some quirk about your home. There’s still lots of paperwork, scanning, faxing. We’re chipping away at that pain with technology and great advisors.
How many lenders do you work with?
We work with a panel of 19 carefully selected lenders. That’s 90% of all the products that are available in the market. In the very rare circumstance we see there’s a better product out there that we can’t arrange we’ll always let a customer know. It’s all about transparency and getting the best outcome for our customers. The more information we can give you, the better informed you can be and the more confident you will be that you have the right mortgage for you.
Do you work with specialist lenders as well?
We don’t offer specialist lending like second charge, high risk or bridging finance.
How is Dynamo going to benefit the mortgage market?
Our mission is to help borrowers navigate the maze of the mortgage market. To do that, we are rebuilding the mortgage process from the ground up and putting the customer at the very heart of it, delivering a new, tech-enabled experience which will change the way in which people think about their mortgage.
With the backing of the UK’s largest mortgage broker, Countrywide, our customers can have confidence in our market knowledge and great relationships with lenders and the exclusive rates that go hand in hand.
Does Dynamo do user research?
Yes, absolutely! We have a bunch of customers who help us called Dynamigos. We meet with them regularly, conduct in depth interviews, beer and pizza evenings and surveys to test our hypotheses, gather insights and co-create new features. Understanding our customers is absolutely crucial. We need to understand what we’re doing well and how we can improve.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned?
We’re constantly finding surprising things - for example, that customers really value knowing that a human is on hand via webchat or a call to help with their application questions even if they don’t actually use them.
Getting a mortgage can take a bit of time. We’re all busy, and typically people like to do their finances in the evening. Kids turn up, you get distracted. In testing, our customers asked for an exit or pause and resume function. So that they can stop after 10 minutes and then come back to it and do the next section of the application.