When most people hear of blockchain, they think of cryptocurrency. Given the attention that Bitcoin has received, this is a reasonable association. However, blockchain is more than digital money. It has the potential to disrupt dozens of industries, including real estate. Propy has been at the forefront of using blockchain to bring new possibilities to real estate agents and their clients.
What Is Blockchain?
A blockchain is a ledger, or record of accounts, that is shared across a decentralized network and updated in real-time. As such, each node, or member of the network, has the latest copy. It means that once an entry is made, it cannot be altered. Any attempt at manipulation would be rejected by the other nodes. In this way, decentralization offers security benefits exceeding anything that traditional, server-based storage can provide.
Blockchain and Real Estate Agents
Clients hire real estate agents for their market knowledge and for help with managing all of the paperwork associated with a real estate transaction. Propy’s Transaction Platform enables buyers and sellers to sign documents virtually and store them on-chain, where they are safe from loss or hack and immediately available to all interested parties. The latter may be especially crucial to agents who represent international or out-of-state clients.
In addition, blockchain can replace much of the work done by real estate lawyers. For example, a blockchain-based smart contract can be programmed to automatically release a buyer’s funds upon the successful completion of an inspection, title search, or other agreed-upon condition.
Lastly, blockchain ensures that deeds are accurately recorded. Although manual deed registration usually goes off without a hitch, paper records can be misplaced or accidentally destroyed. By committing their deeds to the blockchain, property buyers will always be able to prove their ownership.
Real Estate Agents Have an Opportunity
Blockchain’s impact has already been felt in sectors like accounting, finance, and logistics. Thanks to Propy, it can now be leveraged to streamline and secure the property purchase and sale process.
Real estate agents should not fear this change; instead, they should celebrate it. Blockchain accelerates transaction times, ignores borders, increases security, and minimizes costs to consumers. Once the technology receives mainstream adoption, it should result in greater opportunity for agents and happier clients.