UK tech startup, habito, has launched the world's first artificially intelligent Digital Mortgage Adviser (DMA) allowing millions of consumers to discuss their mortgage needs from any connected device, 24/7, without requiring a human broker. Built using AI technology and habito's market-leading algorithm, the DMA marries all the elements of a customer's financial life (e.g. The DMA explains the impact consumers' decisions will have on each mortgage configuration as a traditional mortgage broker would, but in a fraction of the time (average 10 minutes). Habito has the ability to search hundreds of products (versus a handful), so once the advice is complete consumers can be sure they're on the best mortgage for them, which can result in savings of thousands of pounds per year*. In designing the new system, habito analysed hundreds of advice interviews in order to understand what consumers needed and what formed the basis of informative advice.
Digital challenger banks, a new breed of banks that aim to give customers a simple, transparent experience mainly through a mobile app, are starting to grow to maturity. As a growing number acquire their banking licenses under new, more relaxed regulations since 2013 these "neo" banks have been quietly launching products, from saver accounts to mortgages, as they seek to draw disgruntled customers away from the traditional banks. Atom Bank, based in the north east of England, far away from the fintech hub of London, has the jump on many of its rivals, launching its app in April 2015 and announcing that it will be offering a mortgage product earlier this month. In a candid interview, Atom Bank CEO Mark Mullen ran Techworld through its product pipeline, explaining why it is getting into mortgages before current accounts as it plans to shake up the banking sector in 2017. Atom Bank started providing two year fixed rate residential mortgages through selected independent advisers in December 2016, joining its two Fixed Saver accounts and SME business lending product.
This week, tech startup Habito claims to have launched the world's first artificially intelligent'digital mortgage adviser'. The robo-adviser takes into account a borrower's employment, salary and financial information and uses an algorithm to search through hundreds of products and provide a suitable mortgage. Habito says its software can provide consumers with the information they need in an average of ten minutes. In order to configure the service, the startup analysed hundreds of mortgage advice interviews to determine what borrowers need and what forms the basis of advice. "Our digital mortgage adviser is a huge step forward in making mortgage advice accessible for consumers in the way they need it most: unbiased, always available and most importantly free," says Daniel Hegarty, chief executive and founder of Habito, which launched in April.
Daniel Hegarty, the founder of mortgage broker app Habito, does not have the physique of a tech geek. The 35-year-old's arms are muscled and densely covered in tattoos, a legacy from his time, perhaps, as a successful guitarist. Even by the standards of tech entrepreneurs, Daniel's background is unconventional. Leaving school in London before he was 16, he says: "I guess I was a bit of a rebel. I wanted to do what I wanted to do.
We were inspired this week by author Tom Chatfield's article in the Guardian on how Technology is killing the myth of human centrality, where he described robots as: "Tireless, infinitely patient, endlessly consistent -- our creations measure up in ways we can only dream of." That accurately defines how we believe the role technology -- and more specifically Artificial Intelligence -- plays in our lives. If we can embrace our own shortcomings as humans and build the tools that fill that gap, we will only become stronger and more efficient. How does that apply to mortgages? Well, we've built the first artificially intelligent digital mortgage adviser to provide free, unbiased advice so our experts can spend more of their time helping customers.