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London estate agent becomes the first person in the UK to buy an NFT of their apartment

A London estate agent has become the first person in the UK to buy an NFT of their apartment.  The Non-Fungible Token contains a hyper-accurate digital representation of the £6.9m property and property experts have described the deal as “a potentially seminal moment for the real asset market”.

London-based estate agent Charlie Syson, who works for Chesterton, is not only the first UK homeowner to acquire a ‘property NFT’ but also one of the very first homeowners and commercial property investors anywhere in the world to own this new class of Spec Verified NFT.

The transaction gives Mr Syson access to a unique NFT record of his home as well as the digital blueprint of the property that can be accessed using a unique QR code only he has access to.

When his purchase was reported Mr Syson was quick to explain why he was so keen to make the purchase:

“This new class of NFT provides a unique record of my home and an accurate digital representation of the apartment which is far more long-lasting and secure than paper documents. It’s a really exciting digital asset for someone that loves property and NFT artwork, but it’s much more valuable and practical than that.

“I think as technology advances, we will buy and sell things through blockchain and online exchanges much more often, using cryptocurrency as well as traditional money. This will be the case for all sales, including property.”

What next for NFTs in the property world aside from people buying an NFT of their apartment?

Until now property NFTs have been the preserve of luxury developers who offer them as a novelty to accompany a physical property sale.

However, NFTs are gaining traction as they provide a super-accurate and verified digital record of a property.  This record is guaranteed to be 99% accurate by Pupil, the tech company who have created the ‘phygital’ record.  While this may still seem to be a little too sci-fi for some, Pupil’s $500,000 order book (which Pupil claim is the first step towards the realisation of a $70m (£53.3m) in digital property revenue) would suggest the market is coming round to their way of thinking.

Accuracy isn’t the only benefit NFTs offer the property industry.  As NFTs are part of a blockchain-enabled sales process, they could speed up property transactions by basing purchases on verified property datasets.

And if this isn’t enough, there is already talk that NFTs could eventually allow virtual property to be traded in the metaverse so you have a property that mirrors your real life property in every detail so you can use it virtually!

Charlie Syson certainly agrees with this forecast adding:

“These NFTs will become incredibly valuable because of their ability to facilitate quicker, more secure sales and purchases online. And, as the metaverse develops, there are so many possibilities for how this type of NFT could allow me to explore, share and trade the digital twin of my property.  It’s exciting to be at the start of a trend which I think will change how we all interact with property physically and digitally.”

While we wait to see exactly how cryptocurrency and NFTs impact the property industry, if you would like our help to make your next property transaction is as straightforward as possible, please email jeremy.tulloch@collinshoy.com today.