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Bitcoin + Real Estate = Boom or Bust

Ines Hegedus-Garcia
ines@miamism.com

The subject of cryptocurrencies is HOT right now!! And when it comes to real estate, it's going viral.  In Miami, it's about which agents are versed in crypto and which sellers are willing to price their properties in Bitcoin - ultimately it's about thinking "outside the box" in a changing market and wanting to be ahead of the curve.

The cryptocurrency craze may seem sexy but it certainly is generational.  Ask 3 groups of people about digital currencies and you will get 3 very different answers.  Millennials are all over it and I can overhear conversations about rate fluctuations on the daily in my own household.  Gen x'ers are hesitant but willing to jump on the bandwagon and Baby Boomers are horrified!!  << and yes I'm stereotyping, realize that there may be exceptions to the rule.

Here's the thing about Bitcoin and any other digital currency and real estate (Litecoin, Ethereum, Ripple...).  It's not a "get rich quick" question and it's not about who jumps into it first. The real question, in my opinion, is how cryptocurrencies can help people transfer assets in a quick, efficient and legitimate way.  In other words, don't think of it as an investment but possibly as part of your investment strategy. Instead of focusing on the craze, we should be focusing on its technology.  Ian Khan, TedX speaker, defines blockchain as:

As revolutionary as it sounds, Blockchain truly is a mechanism to bring everyone to the highest degree of accountability. No more missed transactions, human or machine errors, or even an exchange that was not done with the consent of the parties involved. Above anything else, the most critical area where Blockchain helps is to guarantee the validity of a transaction by recording it not only on a main register but a connected distributed system of registers, all of which are connected through a secure validation mechanism. 

I recently asked a client and super smart attorney about his opinion on crypto and I should have known he would have a blog post about it.  Jeff Sonn tells us that cryptocurrencies are a horrible idea when it comes to investing and making a quick buck, but here's where Jeff gets my attention,

The only way it may succeed is if major corporations decide that it should be incorporated into every day commerce and banks decide that crypto currency is so well perfected it will solve many of their problems to avoid unwittingly providing money laundering services to terrorists or governments who support terrorists, as well as drug cartels and criminals.

That is the one thing that is truly attractive about crypto currency: That all money transfers are allegedly traceable to its original source. That is the one significant feature of crypto currency that may ultimately prove attractive to banks.

Of course you'll have the "dot com" and "passing craze" comparisons, but I can't stop from feeling a warm and fuzzy when I consider the possibilities!! Imagine a traceable currency that gives certain countries the ability to have an exit strategy?  Imagine the globalization of a currency that would stop money laundering and terrorist transfer activity?  I may be a romantic, but that's the real power of crypto IMHO.

If we focus on the power of blockchain technology, instead of its current hype, we will have a real winner!!


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