9 March 2018 from 12:45 to 14:30

PhD thesis defence Marloes Herijgers on mortgage communication design

Appartementen te koop in de Pijp
Appartements for sale, photo by Alix Guillard (Flickr, CC)

One of the most difficult financial decisions that many people face in their lives is taking out a mortgage. In order to support customers in this decision, mortgage lenders often provide extensive information. The PhD thesis of Marloes Herijgers focuses on 'the design of communication about mortgages' in four different studies.

Data from Dutch mortgage lender

She paid particular attention to information provided to people who take out a mortgage for the first time. The data she uses in her dissertation come from one of the largest mortgage lenders in the Netherlands. In her dissertation on mortgage communication, Herijers adopts a communication design perspective on mortgage communication.

Four studies

In her first study, she investigated the multichannel communication package designed to inform first-time home buyers on their mortgage purchase. She showed that the bank is very concerned with providing information on their mortgage products. However, the customer’s wishes and requirements are underrepresented; the advisors’ communication is product-oriented rather than customer-oriented. Subsequently, study 2, 3 and 4 zoomed in on communication design in mortgage consultations, since consultations are still the main information source for prospective customers.


The four studies presented in the dissertation of Herijgers aim to contribute to an increased understanding of the complex nature of mortgage consultations. She analysed advisors’ routine manners as expert interaction design practices to show how mortgage experts are ‘juggling’ contextual, interactional or technological constraints. This is important, as the totality of constraints threaten the effectiveness of the mortgage consultation. For instance, customers who are cognitively overloaded are likely to forget important information, customers who don’t understand the advisor’s ‘moves’ during the consultation may feel as if the advisor is not concerned with their reason for visit and finally, customers who are not satisfied with advisors because they are too computer-oriented as opposed to customer-centered, may never come back for an advice consultation.

Start date and time
9 March 2018 12:45
End date and time
9 March 2018 14:30
PhD candidate
Marloes Herijgers
Mortgage communication design. A multimethod approach to experts’ constraint management
PhD supervisor(s)
Prof. dr. Leo Lentzprof. dr. Tom Koole
Dr. Henk Pander Maatdr. Tessa van Charldorp
Entrance fee
Free of charge