Celebrity real estate broker Ryan Serhant has seen the future of homebuying — and it involves cryptocurrency.
What Happened: The “Million Dollar Listing New York” star forecasted a future when half of residential property transactions will be conducted using blockchain and digital assets.
“I see a world very soon in which 50% of all real estate transactions are done with crypto, and where contracts are recorded on the blockchain and ‘signed’ as NFTs (non-fungible tokens),” Serhant wrote in his annual letter to clients, as recently reported by Inman. “Our agents are currently working on many wallet-to-wallet crypto transactions now, both in NYC and Florida – a trend you’ll read a lot about in 2022 as wealthy crypto holders look to diversify into hard assets.”
What’s Next: Serhant noted that blockchain has already permeated the homebuying realm, with titles being registered on blockchain and sold as NFTs. Yet he acknowledged the real estate industry’s road to crypto is uphill.
“It feels like there is a lack of buy-in around understanding the value in what is new, decentralized, progressive, and unarguably, complex,” Serhant continued. “We are most threatened by the things we don’t yet appreciate and understand.”
Technically, a person can buy a home with cryptocurrency today, but only if the seller accepts this form of payment. U.S. lenders do not accept cryptocurrency for mortgage payments, but some lenders such as Rocket Companies Inc.’s (NYSE:RKT) Rocket Mortgage will accept liquidated Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) in the form of U.S. dollars within an asset account. But even if a buyer and seller agree on a crypto transaction, finding a title insurance or escrow company to join the digital asset bandwagon is another matter.
Nonetheless, Serhant prophesized that tomorrow’s homebuyers will be prepared for a home purchase thanks to their crypto investments.
“Cryptocurrency has created the largest wealth transfer of our lifetime, and thus many of our buyers in 2021 have either used those profits to make home purchases or actually transacted in crypto, wallet to wallet,” Serhant wrote.