As part of NN Group, mortgage and consumer credit provider Nationale-Nederlanden Bank, helps nearly one million Dutch customers every day to take care of what matters most to them. A recent online survey completed by almost 40,000 has shown that there is room for improvement in the air quality of many homes in the Netherlands. This check is part of our Gezond Wonen (healthy living) platform. With this platform, we aim to raise awareness about a healthy indoor climate. In this interview Sitske Mauritsz, Director of Mortgages and Consumer Credit at Nationale-Nederlanden Bank, tells us more.
1. What is the platform about?
'Nationale-Nederlanden Bank launched the platform in October 2021. There you can find tips and information on how to improve the air quality in your home. You will also find the online check, which we developed together with TNO. This check has now been completed almost 40,000 times. The results show that in 79% of cases, improvements are possible when it comes to healthy air in the home. Healthy air in the home starts with awareness: discovering what can be improved. More knowledge also leads to more action. We would like to help improve the air quality in an easy way. It doesn't have to be drastic or costly right away: whether it’s using your extractor hood well, extra ventilation while sleeping or better filters in the ventilation system, the sum of those small improvements already helps.'
2. Why did NN develop this?
'We want to help our customers have the home of their dreams’. A home is a place where you feel good and can live a healthy life, and the indoor climate in your home has a major influence on this. Another survey we conducted among more than 1,000 consumers showed that almost half have never thought about the air quality in their homes. Knowledge about the health effects of, for example, cooking on gas and the CO2 concentration in the bedroom, is limited. We aim to raise awareness about the importance of a healthy indoor climate and therefore started the online platform in collaboration with TNO. With this we give Dutch people insight and offer practical solutions to improve the air quality in the home. We see that there is a lot of interest in making the home more sustainable and that people are looking for information. For example, insulation is becoming especially important now that the energy price is rising rapidly. But if you are going to insulate, it is also important to ventilate well. So that your home is not only sustainable, but also healthy.'
3. You have won the Golden Lotus Award 2022; what kind of prize is this?
'The Golden Lotus Awards are presented every year by the Dutch trade magazine InFinance. Traditionally, financial advisory firms in the Netherlands determine the winners and express their appreciation for the performance, products and services of their business partners. This year we won an award for the Gezond Wonen platform in the category Innovation Service. For me and the entire team that has worked on the platform, this is recognition that advisors also underline the importance of a healthy indoor climate for their clients. We are extremely proud of this.'
4. What role can advisors play in this?
'Just as with making the home more sustainable, the advisor can also offer added value in making the home healthier. It is important to also point out the importance of a good indoor climate to customers who want to make their home more sustainable or renovated. It is not only about energy saving but also about health. Even better, making the house more sustainable offers an excellent opportunity to improve the indoor climate compared to what it was. '
5. How will NN follow up on this?
'We believe that creating a healthy and sustainable living environment is necessary for a future-proof housing market. Nationale-Nederlanden Bank has therefore committed itself to the objective of making the housing stock in the Netherlands energy-efficient and healthy. For example, we have joined various initiatives with the aim of transferring knowledge, creating awareness and supporting innovations in the field of healthy and sustainable living. For example, we are a partner of Gezond Binnen (Healthy Indoor), actively work together with TNO and have also entered into a partnership with The Green Village (TU Delft). In addition, we will offer Dutch people support in various ways in making their homes more sustainable: by providing insight into making their home greener and more energy efficient, helping with financing, and sharing concrete tips and information. '