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GENERAL PROPERTY

Blockchain powers first property sale in EU

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BORDERS, different tax and regulatory jurisdictions could soon be a thing of the past. Blockchain was used for the first time in a real estate sale in the European Union, with a Spanish seller and French buyer both using cryptocurrency to transfer property ownership using a transaction platform pioneered by Silicon Valley-based Propy. The landmark deal paves the way for more Chinese investors to buy in the EU, by simplifying the complex web of 28 governments in the block.

The sale, in Seville, Spain marks Propy’s official introduction to the EU. The Spanish seller and French buyer both used cryptocurrency (ETH-ETH) to transfer property ownership.

Propy CEO Natalia Karayaneva said blockchain technology continues to revolutionize the way people buy and sell properties across borders.

“The EU market can be a complex web of governments, brokers, and other entities making international property transactions difficult. Propy’s blockchain-enabled platform removes complexity resulting in a simple online transaction that is easy to complete and secure,” she added.

“Until now, real estate investment has been a tedious process. Purchasing property across borders involves buyers and sellers from different tax and regulatory jurisdictions.

“The traditional process is not only complicated and expensive but also vulnerable to fraud. Propy’s platform simplifies the complex process and works within existing legal frameworks. All parties participating in the transaction have mutual trust because of immutable encrypted records on blockchain,”

Karayaneva said all of this helps to fuel a thriving real estate market in the EU, which continues to get increased attention from US and Chinese investors.

“Typically, they look for sea-view villas at around US$200,000. Now, those investors can browse and purchase remotely online. The platform recommends the property to be visited in person but execute the purchase online. Propy’s blockchain-enabled platform also reduces the need for costly intermediaries like escrow services,”

Karayaneva explained that there is no need to print or scan any paperwork or visit banks, brokers or lawyers in person.

“When a transaction is performed, a notary logs into the Propy transaction platform and verifies the seller’s signature. At this point the ownership transfer is recorded both on the blockchain registry and state land registry,” she continued.

The seller Miguel Prados Rodriguez said he was very happy with the outcome.

“Propy made the entire process simpler than it would have been through a traditional sale. Their platform is user-friendly and gave me the peace of mind I needed to know the entire transaction was safe,” he said.

As a result of this transaction, there is already another blockchain-powered property sale scheduled for upcoming months.

Based in the Silicon Valley, Propy is advised by Alain Pinel (Intero Real Estate), Michael Arrington (founder of TechCrunch), Vinny Lingham (CEO of Civic), David Cowan (Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners), Daniel Kottke (first Apple employee), and Bruce Cahan (Consulting Professor at Stanford University).

Australian Property Journal