Looking for Some Batshit Crazy Mortgage Ads? You've Come to the Right Place

Habito—and Jimbo Phillips—feel your pain

They say you should find your customers' pain points and try to solve them. Well, this online mortgage broker from the U.K. certainly seems familiar—perhaps even obsessed—with the pain part.

Habito is back with a second round of "Hell or Habito" ads from Uncommon Creative Studio, following the campaign's launch last fall. The company claims to make the process of getting a mortgage less hellish. And so the animated ads playfully lean into the hellish part. 

Below are the two new 10-second TV executions, involving sweat, piranhas, tentacles and a blinding sense of suffocation. Strange Beast did the animation, with Dutch band Noisia providing the soundtracks.

Hell or Habito | Part 3
Hell or Habito | Part 4

Normally 10-second ads feel rushed, but in many ways these are just as satisfying as the pair of 30-second spots from last year. The condensed time frame adds to the sense of claustrophobia—and then lets you off the hook a bit quicker. 

In a very nice addition to the campaign, Uncommon brought in California artist Jimbo Phillips to made some crazy out-of-home work. The longer-copy ads also emphasize the hellish ordeal of finding a mortgage—in Phillips' signature style. 

See larger versions of the ads here, here and here.

On his website, Phillips says he's been "providing quality services to the action sports world and beyond for two decades." That a British mortgage broker would agree to hire a California action sports illustrator to make some disturbing artwork says a lot about this client's willingness to think differently. 

The Phillips ads will run in the London Underground and elsewhere. 

"Our ads are deliberately colourful, playful and irreverent," says Abba Newbery, chief marketing officer at Habito. "But while the scenarios are heavily dramatized, they reflect an all-too real truth—that people find the process of getting a mortgage utterly hellish. Our insights tell us that two thirds of people suffer from mortgage stress and £15.5 billion is wasted on mortgages every year because homeowners are paying too much interest. 

"Frankly that is unacceptable. For too long the odds have been stacked against customers. Baffling jargon and a lack of transparency when it comes to switching means they are completely disempowered. At Habito we're turning the mortgage market on its head and putting customers back in the driving seat." 

Below, see the two 30-second spots from last fall: 

Hell or Habito | Part 1
Hell or Habito | Part 2

TV Spots 
Agency: Uncommon Creative Studio
Production company: Strange Beast
Director: Andy Baker
Producer: Zoe Muslim
Executive Producer: Kitty Turley
Character Design: Serge Seidlitz
Sound Design: Wave Studios
Sound Designer: Dugal Macdiarmid
Post production: Time Based Arts
Music Supervisor: Dom Bastyra at Wake the Town

Agency: Uncommon Creative Studio
Illustrator: Jimbo Phillips
Media Agency: Goodstuff
Typographer: Alison Carmichael

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd was editor in chief of the Clio Awards and editor of Muse by Clio from 2018 to 2023.

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