The widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies has unleashed enormous potential in the fintech industry, with some capabilities spilling over into the real estate market. As a result, the real estate industry is adapting to accommodate a new generation of investors who prefer to make payments in cryptocurrency.
Following a market explosion that saw Bitcoin breach the $60,000 mark in 2021, investing in real estate with cryptocurrency gained traction. Because of their transformative impact, numerous jurisdictions have amended their real estate laws to allow crypto property purchases.
According to Alexander Tkachenko, CEO and Founder of the VNX liquidity mining platform, the full potential of cryptocurrency in real estate has yet to be realized.
“There is still a huge demand for alternative financial and payment instruments around the world,” he said.
He added that favourable regulations would go a long way toward making both industries more hospitable.
These are the countries that presently support purchasing real estate with crypto.
Thailand was one of the first Asian countries to legalize the use of cryptocurrency. The country currently allows real estate buyers to pay with cryptocurrency. Investors who want to use this payment method must look for local accredited real estate agencies that accept virtual currencies.
While the country had previously prohibited cryptocurrency transactions, the ban was lifted in February 2014. Trading significant cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, XRP, Ether, and Stellar is now permitted under Thai Securities and Exchange Commission rules (SEC).
While individuals are permitted to trade in cryptocurrencies, regulated financial institutions operating in the country, including banks, are not.
As a result, buyers looking to buy property in Thailand using cryptocurrency are likely to use alternative money transfer systems for transaction settlement.
United Arab Emirates
The UAE is a top business destination and is emerging as a major crypto hub, with many international crypto organizations setting up shops to capitalize on the country’s burgeoning status. The country’s cryptocurrency market has grown multifold in the last two years and is expected to grow tenfold in the coming years, assuming all other conditions remain constant.
The country has been a model of amazing architectural marvels for a long time, cementing its position as a leading Middle East/North Africa real estate powerhouse. Some of the nation’s radical structures have emerged due to government-led initiatives to increase local real estate market interest.
The convergence of the crypto and real estate sectors has prompted the establishment to allow the two industries to collaborate to open up the real estate sector to global investors and accelerate the development of its non-oil economy.
Crypto users in the UAE can use digital currencies to purchase houses, villas, apartments, and buildings through authorized agencies.
On the regulatory front, the central bank has yet to designate cryptocurrencies as legal tender, so some constraints exist, such as banks’ lack of crypto service provision. On the other hand, crypto transactions between individuals and some regulated real estate agencies are permitted.
Cryptocurrency use is widespread in Turkey, with over eight million Turks owning digital currencies. Adoption is fueled by various factors, including runaway inflation, which has resulted in the depreciation of the Turkish lira. Over the last two years, the national currency has lost more than half its value against the US dollar.
Real estate agencies in the country are beginning to accept cryptocurrency payments as more people use cryptocurrency to transact.
Investors can purchase property in the transcontinental country through regulated real estate agencies. People who invest at least $250,000 in fiat or the equivalent in cryptocurrency in real estate have the option of obtaining direct citizenship through the Turkish golden visa program.
Portugal is one of the European Union’s most crypto-friendly countries. As a result, it is not surprising that the government has made it possible for investors to purchase real estate using cryptocurrencies. Previously, buying real estate with cryptocurrency was permitted, but the funds had to be converted into fiat before the property transfer could be completed. This changed in April when new relevant legislation was enacted.
Notaries can now ratify real estate transactions involving cryptocurrency under the new legislation. Furthermore, digital currencies can be converted into fiat currency for property ownership transfers to be valid. The new rule classifies these transactions as barter deals.
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Montenegro is one of the most financially liberal Balkan countries, with no special requirements for cryptocurrency transactions, including crypto real estate purchases. Due to the potential macroeconomic benefits, the country has made concerted efforts to become a major crypto centre in recent years.
It granted Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin citizenship in April as part of a campaign to attract crypto investors to the country.
Real estate investors using cryptocurrencies to purchase property in Montenegro face a few complications if a certified notary sanctions the transaction.
Georgia has many to offer investors and laws to encourage foreign investment. For example, investors who wish to invest in the country pay no taxes on capital gains, including returns from cryptocurrency investments. There are no currency transaction limits as well.
While it is possible to buy real estate in Georgia using cryptocurrencies, it is essential to note that the country’s cryptocurrencies are unregulated, so the final purchase figures entered in the property register must be in fiat.
Property purchases using cryptocurrency can only be made through licensed real estate agencies that provide this service.
According to Finder’s Crypto Adoption October 2022 report, over 2.5 million Canadians own cryptocurrency. As a result of this dynamic, more real estate firms in the country are accepting cryptocurrency payments.
For cryptocurrency investors looking to buy property in Canada, authorized real estate companies that accept cryptocurrency payments can help ensure compliance.
Some real estate brokers also offer cryptocurrency-to-fiat conversion services to help with the process, as property sales in the official registry must be in Canadian dollars.
Crypto users who want to buy real estate with digital coins should consult with tax advisors first to avoid tax complications, as Canadian regulations take capital gains taxes on cryptocurrencies seriously.
Cryptocurrencies have the potential to disrupt the notoriously illiquid real estate market. Allowing crypto real estate purchases not only diversify payment options but also makes it easier for international investors who dabble in crypto to acquire real estate assets globally.