US-based firm Propy, which provides a real estate platform that connects property buyers with sellers, announced on Tuesday its first blockchain-based real estate deal in the European Union. The parties involved in the deal, with a seller from Seville and a French buyer, used Ethereum – the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, to move the property’s ownership through Propy’s platform.
The transaction platform provided by Propy aims to simplify the real estate trade processes, which was proven with the current deal. Traditional real estate investments involve multiple time-wasting processes. If the trade is carried out across borders, then it should also consider the differences between countries’ regulations and taxes, which makes the operation even more complicated. Propy leverages blockchain to automate processes, ensure transparency, prevent fraud, and help the parties comply with the relevant regulations. The technology enables all parties to have mutual trust thanks to the immutable encrypted records on the distributed ledger.
Propy CEO Natalia Karayaneva commented:
“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 noted.
Miguel Prados Rodriguez, the seller, said that he was very happy with the deal.
“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 added.
The Propy team hopes that blockchain technology would contribute to the revival of the EU’s real estate market, which currently attracts investors from the US and China. Such investors would mostly be interested in $200,000 sea-view houses, and now they can search for properties and buy them online. Propy encourages them to visit the house in person but make the payment through the platform. This is also because blockchain cuts the costs related to middlemen responsible with escrow services. When the sale takes place, a notary enters the Propy platform and checks the seller’s digital signature. If everything matches, the ownership is recorded on the blockchain database and the state land registry.
Propy considers the deal a significant milestone, as it introduces the firm in the EU’s real estate market. Previously, the company managed cross-border transactions in Eastern Europe and the US.
Last year, we reported that the world's first property sale through blockchain smart contract was carried out in Kyiv, Ukraine, for a $60,000 apartment.