Bringing to life democratized mortgage lending.

Sketch, Zeplin
My role
UX/UI, Product Research, Copywriting


I was the first contractor employed for Neighbour, a peer-to-peer mortgage lending company that allowed more people to own their own homes. I was one of the first people to work on the product. I was responsible for end-to-end design, including comprehensive market research, requirements writing, ideation, wireframing, and high fidelity design.

Jump to
The problem ↓
Market assessement↓
The outcome ↓

The Problem

Buying a house is very difficult for most young Canadians. Many are priced out of the market, having to continue to rent.


Percentage of young adults aged 18 to 34 years old in Ontario who own a home - Statistics Canada

At the same time, many Canadians are looking to invest more in real estate because it is a reasonably safe and high return investment. However, a high percentage don’t have the cash to buy properties independently.

Market assessment

Companies are starting to solve this issue by crowdfunding mortgages and second mortgages in the US. I  did heuristic evaluations of the experiences of three peer-to-peer mortgage companies in the US and one online lending marketplace. I put my findings together in a comprehensive report.

Sign up as a borrower

For the borrower sign-up flow, there was a lot of information I needed to get from the user to onboard them. I grouped the info for maximum efficiency, ensuring steps remained low for transparency.

Key design choices:

Material design fields for familiarity and usability.

A contact card with an avatar and friendly content to help create trust.

Utilizing teal as the header text colour and secondary action colour to make users feel safe and calm (crucial considering the company’s newness).

Sign up as an investor

For the Investor sign-up, gaining trust was paramount, as they would need to connect their bank account to transfer funds for investments.

Key design choices:

Using transparent and welcoming language.

Contact section to emphasize that there are real trustworthy people behind the company. Multiple contact methods and a photo of a call center person.

For any piece where the user was required to upload personal information such as SIN or ID, assurances added around privacy and  reasons for needing them.  

Making investments

Browse Investments was a challenging flow because I needed to present a lot of crucial information to the user without overwhelming them.

Key design choices:

Accordions, to allow the user to scan high-level details in the closed state and expand to see more information, including photos of the property.

Colour-coding LTV % for quick identification. 

Comprehensive filters. You can filter by rating, LTV band, the borrower’s credit score, location, or term.

Borrower dashboard

For the Borrower dashboard, I needed to focus on transparency  to quickly see critical items like their payment due date and principal owing.

Key design choices:

Key details laid out in easy-to-scan list format.

Icons used to visually indicated whether their next payment is correctly set up.

To help users strengthen financial literacy and feel confident about paying their loan back, educational blog content is included to answer all their questions.  


Investor dashboard

For the investor dashboard, I wanted to create an easy-to-scan dashboard that would make users feel in control.

Key design choices:

I used an accent colour to notify the user of when fiancials may be in danger, but I selected orange instead of red to avoid stressing out the user.

For inspiration, I looked at strong design-led financial products like Wealthsimple.

Borrower marketing page

1. Aspirational image: Aspirational images invite the user in. It highlights the end goal for the borrower - greater access to home funds and, therefore, a happier family life.

2. Value Prop: “Your dream home, your way” and the points below suggest to users that Neighbour will deliver them financial security at a lower price.

3 .Call to action: The “Check your rate” call to action encourages the user to take action quickly.

4 .Value props further outlined: This section gives users more details about each value prop.  

5. How it works: How it works gives a high-level explanation of how Neighbour works for borrowers and investors. 

6. Testimonial: Direct quotes from people give further validity to the company. 

7. Mission section: Reinforces credibility to gain trust.

Investor marketing page

1. Aspirational image: Aspirational images show a happy couple excited about their new investment.

2. Value Prop section: Outlines why users should invest with Neighbour: less risk than stocks, great returns, and transparency when investing in mortgages. 

3. Call to action: Learn more button invites them to view more details before starting the sign-up flow.

4. Feature highlight: I included a screenshot of the dashboard to intrigue them and get them excited about the product and potential returns.  

5. Mortgages section: Showing a sample of actual mortgages to invest in helps them understand how the product works and increases interest. 

6. Testimonials: Direct quotes from other investors help with the trust piece, crucial since many will be new to peer-to-peer lending.


Neighbour was a challenging project because I was brought on so early and needed to navigate a financial space that was new to me, so the research I did was crucial in moving forward.

Because we wanted to produce a prototype for raising funds over a short period, we focused on recreating the US experience.

However, we should have put more time into investigating the readiness of the Canadian market for such a product and should have done more first-hand user interviewers to be confident that we had a good understanding of Canadian users.

The founder of Neighbour has since pivoted to the crypto space, so the company no longer exists.