Financial literacy is on the skids in this country, and the clunky, dull statements we’re forced to read aren’t helping.
Mortgage statements are among the worst offenders to the point where the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau made it part of its mission to simplify mortgage disclosure forms and began soliciting homeowners’ complaints online.
Until the federal agency comes to homeowners’ rescue, however, we’ll have to settle for the old school statements or seek out other alternatives. Enter Tom Nelson and Tristan Cook, two designers at Humans in Design, who just might change the game.
The designers have proposed a mortgage statement for the 21st century based on how users engage and interpret the data.
To curb costs, the designers kept the standard black-and-white page used by banks but re-jiggered the layout so that the most crucial information appears at top. From scheduled payments to due dates, the loan balance and interest rate, customers can easily see where they stand without having to call their lender.
The redesign also features several charts to help homeowners prepare for any interest rate changes. Customers could pre-set the rate they want to check, which would help them budget for other expenditures and reduce the risk of falling behind on their payments.
“Most customers rarely read or understand their mortgages and this leads to uninformed customers,” say the designers, who intend to overhaul the statement even further by making it digital. “Thorough user testing would lead to further improvements. (The statement) could be linked to real-time interactive graphs on smartphones and computers.”
While the designers haven’t said how they plan to help execute the statement, we suggest they file a complaint with the CFPB.
Watch the video below to learn more: