June 27, 2022

Miami's NFT Mansion

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A new idea for an 11,000 square foot mansion in Miami, FL known as the "Meta Residence" has raised quite a few eyebrows in the world of real estate and NFTs. The Meta Residence is the result of a collaboration by One Sotheby's International Realty, Voxel Architects and real estate developer, Gabe Sierra. The mansion itself is proposed to exist in two forms, an actual 11,000 square foot mansion and a virtual NFT counterpart. The NFT counterpart will exist inside the metaverse on the digital platform The Sandbox, with the actual real estate in one of Miami's most sought after neighborhoods.

Interestingly, the property's sale will be executed on the Ethereum blockchain, though the price for property is still to be determined. The mansion's developer envisions a world where digital currency users can buy a home directly via the blockchain and gain the ability to transfer ownership of the house through smart contracts secured by blockchain. The use of NFTs and the metaverse as an avenue to sample or create extensions of real-world experiences is a driving force behind many NFT projects. The Meta Residence is no different in this regard.

Whether this vision may come to fruition is, like the price of the Meta Mansion, yet to be determined. A big question is whether blockchain transactions will make it easier to acquire the property or create yet another hurdle in the real estate transaction process. For example, the winning bidder of the Meta Residence will still need to record a deed in the Miami-Dade County public records, in addition to managing a newly minted NFT. The management of the NFT itself may be complicated for the vast majority of the general public, so real estate developers and home builders will need to figure out a way to apply this deal structure to middle class properties. Furthermore, under our current real estate title recording system, the NFT itself cannot be linked to the physical deed to the property, but rather to the ownership of an LLC that owns the physical asset. Until counties across the nation start recording real estate titles on the blockchain (if they ever do), the blockchain real estate transaction may not be as useful as it may sound.

Still, there are optimistic individuals in the real estate community who believe that NFTs are the future of real estate title, but even these optimists appreciate the reality that it may take a while for our world to adapt to this new idea.

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