London-based tech company Instahome has fired up with ambitions to be a bridge between the worlds of real estate and crypto.
The startup (aka instahome.io) wants to use tokenisation to make real estate investments “accessible to everyone” – and will do this by offering a real estate-backed crypto token on the Algorand blockchain.
The concept is not new. For instance, the US has quite a few firms doing the same thing. There’s RealT in Florida, SolidBlock in New York, to name just a few.
Any investment comes with risks, but Instahome says customers in the UK can start investing from £50, and there is no lock in period. It points out that there is no stamp duty, no management fees and no agent fees.
The idea is to combine crypto investments and real estate without having to manage each property. There are no fees besides paying for the asset-backed tokens. Instahome is generating revenue by charging the homeowners and not the investors.
Instahome is the creation of Dimitrios Konstantinidis, who is also the Founder and CEO of Honest AI. That company provides AI-powered real estate investing.
Konstantinidis tells eWeek UK about his reasons for founding Instahome: “Buying a home has been a truly exhausting experience for me and also very expensive. It took me six months to complete on my apartment’s purchase and I changed conveyancers two times for example. The idea with Instahome came from this experience, where anyone should be able to instantly invest in home equity from £50 without going through such a complicated and time-consuming buying process.”
He adds: “My ambition is to make single family homes investible and tradable at a global scale using blockchain.”
His new venture is targeting consumers at the moment but Konstantinidis says that Instahome “will open it to institutions too provided they are investing via blockchain and not the traditional way”.
The way it works is quite simple. A homeowner submits their property for approval on the website. Instahome evaluates the property using AI along with humans and approves the property based on certain criteria, such as location, condition and occupant details.
Once approved, the owner signs a home equity agreement, which is then tokenised and put under its token. The owners receive daily income as staking rewards, while the value of their token appreciates as house prices go up.
According to the Instahome website, the startup has three backers. These comprise VC firm Pi Labs; Andrew Baum, Chairman of Newcore Capital, et al; and Barrie Heptonstall, CCO of Small Robot Company, et al.