Glen Oaks states in their official release that they made the decision to start accepting BTC as payment due to the rising number of properties being sold for BTC, citing a home in Lake Tahoe that sold for 2,739 BTC, the equivalent of $1.6M USD at the time. A luxury home in Houston, Texas listed this year is going for 74.18 BTC (1,099,000 USD).
Hoping to buy or sell a home with crypto? One of Southern California's largest real estate escrow companies now accepts #Bitcoin and #BitcoinCash with BitPay. https://t.co/UQPBDwYsdP pic.twitter.com/xe4WObovG9
— BitPay (@BitPay) October 11, 2018
Who’s Actually Selling Homes for BTC?
The move seems geared toward luxury property owners, and there does appear to be a market for multimillion-dollar real estate buyable with BTC. The company Bitcoin Real Estate lists everything from European villas to apartment complexes in Texas on their site for BTC prices, so there does appear to be a market for home buying with BTC.
Luxury real estate realtor Piper Moretti said of the decision to use BitPay:
“This is great news for buyers and sellers in the Blockchain space. Cryptocurrency transactions go much smoother when escrow is dialed into this cutting-edge way of purchasing property. I am so excited to see this new payment method coming to fruition because two years ago I would try to talk to any escrow company who would listen and now that it’s become more of a thing that people are realizing that they need to take a look at it.”
How Will it Work?
BitPay will reportedly process all BTC payments taken by Glen Oaks and will verify the digital assets used to pay. Once the funds are verified, an invoice gets sent to the buyer, who has 15 minutes to pay that invoice before it expires. The BTC payment goes to escrow through BitPay, who converts it back to fiat and sends that money to the property seller.
With Bitcoin’s value plunging overnight, people may be thinking twice about using it to buy real estate. BTC dropped more than five percent, currently valued at $6,273.38. The drop was apparently precipitated by a massive sell-off of BTC on Oct. 11 due to worries over BTC’s failure to rise in value.
While homes have been buyable for BTC for a few years now, the currency’s recent fluctuations in value have many crypto investors watching it closely to see if it will bounce back, as it has in the past. Holders of BTC and BCH may want to keep holding to determine if they can get more bang for their crypto buck on a home.
A large escrow company willing to get behind cryptocurrency could help it gain traction in the real estate world, however, and the fact that they’ve teamed up with BitPay will likely help bolster consumer faith in their cryptocurrency purchases.
Cover Photo by Hariesh Rajagopal on Unsplash
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