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*List your property for FREE till 31st of May 2018
Limited Time only!
*List your property for FREE till 31st of May 2018
We are pleased to announce that Bestington Group – Parent Company of www.Coin4Homes.com has partnered with BitPay – the world’s leading and largest Bitcoin payments processor, to accept and facilitate Bitcoin transactions for properties represented by Bestington Real Estate. We are proud to be partnering with this trusted service provider to process bitcoin transactions for our properties.
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Our aim is to create a community of likeminded individuals and help implement Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies for purchasing real estate and other hard assets.
The Knox Group of Companies, with headquarters in the Isle of Man, announced late on Tuesday it will launch a residential and commercial property development in Dubai valued at £250 million (Dh1.19 billion), with residences that can be purchased in the digital currency bitcoin.
The company said the 2.4 million-square-foot property venture called Aston Plaza and Residences, consisting of two residential towers and a shopping mall, will be the first major real estate development that will accept bitcoin as payment.
The Dubai project is one step toward efforts to push bitcoin into the mainstream. Maligned and ridiculed in its early days, bitcoin hit a record high of US$4,870 on Friday, surging more than 400 per cent so far this year.
The whole project is expected to be completed by late 2019.
“This a great opportunity for the cryptocurrency community to offload some of its significant gains, especially the early adopters, and actually deploy them in hard-core assets which I’m building,” said Knox’s chairman, Doug Barrowman.
Mr Barrowman, originally from Scotland, in 2008 founded Knox, which engages in private equity, property and wealth management. The company manages £1.5bn in assets, he said.
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When luxury brokerage Sotheby’s International Realty announced in September it had facilitated one of the first U.S. home sales for bitcoin, the dollar value of a single bitcoin equaled $3,429.
Since the sale of the home in Austin, Texas, for which the sales price was never disclosed, the value of a single bitcoin—a cryptocurrency backed by an online ledger called the blockchain—has quadrupled to over $13,800 and turned a swath of early adopters into millionaires in a matter of months. At one point earlier this month a single bitcoin was worth as much as $19,200.
One of the first purchases people make with their bitcoin windfall: A home, experts say.
“Real estate is the first impact I see for this nouveau riche,” said Joe Kelly, who co-founded Unchained Capital, a startup that allows bitcoin owners to borrow against their cryptocurrency.
The process is fairly straightforward for the homeowner involved in a blockchain currency transaction. It’s the buyer who faces more nuance as he or she weighs the tax implications and other considerations before trading their coins in for square footage, experts say.
In Miami, for example, a financier is seller a 950-square-foot Miami condo with a price of about 60 bitcoins, said Douglas Elliman broker Dean Bloch.
“My seller has been in finance for the past 25 years and he’s decided to sell this place just for bitcoin,” Mr. Bloch said.
The seller owns three other homes and is using the sale of the Miami condo as a way to acquire cryptocurrency, the agent said.
Once they get a suitable offer, the transaction works like an all-cash purchase, but instead of using bank accounts, the buyer transfers bitcoins to the seller’s digital “wallet,” which takes about 15 minutes.
The seller would also need a lawyer at the closing—who might accept fees only in dollars rather than bitcoin—and/or find a title insurance company to underwrite the sale, Mr. Bloch said.
A two-bedroom condo traded hands in December for 17.741 Bitcoin, or the equivalent of $275,000 in what Brown Harris Stevens agents Stephan Burke and Carol Cassis said on social media was the first “bitcoin to bitcoin” real estate transaction in the U.S. In past sales that involved bitcoin, the buyer converted the cryptocurrency to fiat through websites like Coinify or Bitpay before closing the sale.
Sellers accepting bitcoin, however, should keep a sharp eye on the daily fluctuations in the currency’s value due to its volatility. They can hedge against potential devaluation by adding a bitcoin premium to the asking price.
BUYING WITH BITCOINS
By contrast, the nouveau riche looking to get something tangible out of their cryptocurrency investment have a bit more to consider.
If a seller won’t accept bitcoin outright, then a buyer needs first to sell to a third party for U.S. dollars, euros or another fiat currency.
Property site Redfin reports that its brokers have facilitated a number of deals where buyers sold bitcoins to make the down payment. For instance, one buyer sold two coins, each for over $7,400, to make the down payment on a home in Carlsbad, California.
Not every exchange has gone so smoothly, however. Redfin Agent Carina Isentaeva, based in San Francisco, saw a deal for a luxury home in Silicon Valley fall through when the client couldn’t sell bitcoins in time to make good on his offer.
Even a direct exchange of property for bitcoins holds tax implications a buyer should consider, said Robert W. Wood, a San Francisco-based tax lawyer.
The U.S. government recognizes bitcoin as property and officially under the new tax law starting Jan. 1, 2018, anyone trading cryptocurrency would trigger a capital gains tax.
Mr. Wood compared buying property with cryptocurrency to trading IBM stock for a new home. The home buyer would pay roughly 20% in capital gains tax and another 3.8% net investment tax on the amount their bitcoins had appreciated since they first bought or mined for them. That could be one doozy of a tax bill if the trader got into the crypto game when infant bitcoins were worth less than a dollar.
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You read that title right. In a PR stunt of the decade, a real estate company called Aston Plaza Crypto is riding the Blockchain mania in Dubai and has partnered with BitPay to sell property for Bitcoin in Dubai’s Science Park, a district 20 minutes away by car from downtown Dubai.
It looks like 2017 is shaping up to be the year of crypto: first, we had Paris Hilton advertising ICOs, and now we have apartments being sold for cryptocurrencies in Dubai. I think we can all agree that Bitcoin is finally hitting mainstream audiences with all this news.
Currently under construction, the 250 mln sterling pound project is set to be home to two towers and a mall. The 40-floor towers will include luxury studio apartments as well as one and two bedroom open plan apartments. As of this writing, the cheapest studio is going for 28.15 BTC (approximately $127,500), while the largest two bedroom apartments are selling for around 75 BTC.
Aston Plaza is a joint venture between the Isle of Man based Knox group and Baroness Michelle Mone, a British member of the House of Lords. In an interview with CNBC news, the Baroness said that Bitcoin is “the currency of the future.”
“I think because everything is logged and registered, everything’s transparent, that I wouldn’t be getting involved in it — especially from the House of Lords element, I’m a Baroness — so I wouldn’t be getting involved in it if it was a kind of ‘dodgy’ industry.”
By mimicking a real-life ICO, the joint venture has offered up to a 20 percent discount on these under-construction properties to early birds paying in Bitcoin. Of the 1,133 apartments, 480 have already been sold in fiat, while the remainder are up for grabs for Bitcoin enthusiasts.
Across the globe, the business behind real estate has always been traditional and boring, but this is all about to change as more and more countries are looking into testing a way to buy and sell land and house deeds more securely and efficiently on the Blockchain.
Aston Plaza is not the first to take advantage of the Blockchain’s hype factor for real estate. Take Omar Kassim for example: In 2011, he founded JadoPado, a UAE-based e-commerce platform that was recently acquired by the Dubai billionaire Mohammad Al Abbar as part of an effort to launch a competitor to Amazon in the Middle East.
Today, Omar is working on an open source real estate asset management business platform called Esanjo.
And Omar is not the only one. In fact, there have been rumors that Smart Dubai, the initiative created by Dubai’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashed, is working on a way to transfer property ownership directly over the Blockchain.
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Despite warnings of a bubble and massively fluctuating values, bitcoin continues to fascinate investors and new industries. And now the housing industry is starting to dip its toes into the water.
One Miami condo seller is only accepting Bitcoin offers, while online real estate brokers say several other listings are willing to accept bitcoin as a payment option. (A residential/commercial property in the Isle of Man is also accepting the digital currency.)
But how many bitcoin does it take to actually buy a house? The national median home price in November 2017 was $248,000. Using the midday price of bitcoin (as reflected on CoinDesk) on Jan. 15, that works out to 17.65 bitcoin.
National averages aren’t a lot of good in some areas, though. We gathered median prices for November 2017 in a number of states and cities to find out how much home your Bitcoin would buy.
San Francisco – $1.588 million (per Paragon Real Estate Group) / 113 bitcoin
Seattle – $725,000 / 51.6 bitcoin
Los Angeles – $583,000 / 41.5 bitcoin
Washington, D.C. – $550,000 / 39 bitcoin
Phoenix, AZ – $243,000 / 17.3 bitcoin
Connecticut – $247,500 / 17.6 bitcoin
Florida – $240,000 / 17 bitcoin
Illinois – $185,000 / 13 bitcoin
Iowa – $153,250 / 11 bitcoin
Kansas – $200,451 / 14.3 bitcoin
Maine – $200,000 / 14.2 bitcoin
Massachusetts – $384,000 / 27.3 bitcoin
Michigan – $182,761 / 13 bitcoin
Missouri – $190,050 / 13.5 bitcoin
New Jersey – $300,000 / 21.4 bitcoin
New York– $254,000 / 18 bitcoin
Ohio – $174,689 / 12.4 bitcoin
Texas – $213,396 / 15.2 bitcoin
Utah – $277,000 / 19.7 bitcoin
Vermont – $221,000 / 15.7 bitcoin
Virginia – $270,000 / 19.2 bitcoin
Washington – $363,200 / 26 bitcoin
Article by Fortune: