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article imageVermont house sale recorded using blockchain technology

By Ken Hanly     Mar 15, 2018 in Technology
South Burlington - When Katherine Purcell sold her home in South Burlington Vermont on February 20th, it was groundbreaking and different from the usual house sale. The sale was recorded on a blockchain.
Pilot project with Propy
Last year the the city of South Burlington agreed to begin recording real estate sales on the Ethereum blockchain as part of a pilot program with the aid of Propy a real estate platform developed by the San Francisco based company of the same name.
The announcement of the project and details can be found on the Propy blog.
The purpose of Propy
Propy's platform allows anyone to buy or sell real estate anywhere online. The Ethereum-based blockchain records each step in the transaction, from expressing interest in a particular property, to signing agreements, to title transfers.
The process is much more secure than sales done through traditional methods would be. It would be impossible for a person to claim that they had not received a payment or signed a document, nor could they alter records. The process provides an unchangeable record on the blockchain ledger that cannot be hacked.
On its website Propy claims: "Propy integrates blockchain ledger for the governments to make title deeds issuance for your property instantly online, secure and cost-effective."
The nature of the pilot program
Donna Kinville, a South Burlington City Clerk said in February that the pilot program has four levels. The integration of Propy's system increases at each level. The sale by Purcell probably is at the first level. The processes used by the city are unchanged. The difference is that the paper title the city received includes the location of that title in the Propy blockchain.
At level four, Propy will replace entirely the system used by South Burlington at present to manage its land records.
Sale was the very first sanctioned use of blockchain technology for a public service
Often the crypto area is regarded with suspicion by governments and financial institutions but it is clear that blockchain technology has many applications in real estate, banking and in many other areas.
A Propy source said: “This first deal makes it much easier for the rest of the 49 states to iterate the process... In fact, Arizona and Colorado are next.”
The pilot project could represent a turning point for the use of blockchain technology in government offices. Many other jurisdictions may try Propy if the project turns out well. Its success could lead to use of the blockchain technology in other areas as well.
A video promo for Propy is appended.
More about blockchain technology, Vermont, Propy
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