Knab offers innovative mortgage solution for self employed

The Netherlands, November 16, 2015

Today, Aegon's online bank, Knab, launched a new mortgage that provides a solution for many of the Netherlands' 800,000 self-employed.

The initiative is the result of a co-creation session together with freelancer workers (known as ZZPers) in the Netherlands, who faced difficulties in securing a full mortgage through the traditional banking system.

...unique construction, which requires the freelancer to maintain an agreed balance on a special mortgage account...

Applicants who have at least two years of self-employed business accounts, and a forecast for 2016, will be considered.

Knab offers mortgage of up to 103% of the property valuation, in contrast to the majority of other providers who request a significant cash deposit. This is made possible through a unique construction, which requires the freelancer to maintain an agreed balance on a special mortgage account for between four and eight years.

Following this period, the balance can once again be used for business purposes, rather than being tied up bricks and mortar. This approach also enables freelancers to make maximum use of tax deductions on mortgage interest.

Open to ideas

Rene Frijters, founder of Knab says the idea came as a result of the banks' monthly 'Knab Open' events, where customers are invited to the Knab offices to feedback their banking experiences.

"When it came to self-employed mortgages, there was a lot of criticism of the requirements from other banks for sizeable deposits and the liquidity problems that this can cause.

"We came up with an escrow account solution which allows the self-employed to fully deduct tax on their mortgage interest. Listening to your customers is really a pleasure and has proved to be very useful," he adds.

Financial Marketing Award 2015

Rewarding recognition

In acknowledgement of Knab's customer-focus approach, including its ZZP mortgage initiative, the digital bank was declared winner of the Financial Marketing Award 2015 on November 10 in the Netherlands.

The award, as voted by jury and audience at the National Financial Marketing Day, acknowledged innovation in the financial sector. Jury member, Madelon English of Beyond Marketing presented Leslie Hogeveen of Knab with the award.

She said the jury had specifically sought initiatives which had a wide and notable impact.

According Hogeveen, Knab "knows its market demand very well" and, as a result, enjoys an above average Net Promotor Score.


About Knab

Knab was founded in 2012 and has more than 75,000 customers and approximately 100 employees. The bank operates entirely online and has no branches. Instead, customers can contact the service desk from 08:00-22:00 by phone or online. Knab is part of AEGON Bank N.V.