A look at the house and workshop in Canada that's on the market for bitcoins. (Photo: For Sale by Owner)
A two-bedroom, 900-square-foot bungalow and its corresponding acreage is up for sale in Alberta, Canada. But there's a twist as to how it can be bought.
Unlike a traditional transaction to purchase a home, this seller is asking for it to be traded in bitcoins, a digital currency that is slowly gaining acceptance.
Bitcoins were first described as concept in 1998 as a peer-to-peer electronic cash system.
"Building upon the notion that money is any object, or any sort of record, accepted as payment for goods and services and repayment of debts in a given country or socio-economic context, Bitcoin is designed around the idea of using cryptography to control the creation and transfer of money, rather than relying on central authorities," the bitcoin website's about section states.
This is what a bitcoin digital wallet might look like. (Image: Wikimedia)
This video explains further what bitcoins are and how the system works:
Taylor More told Ars Technica he wanted to be the first home sold for $405,000 worth of bitcoins in the hopes that it "help push the currency more mainstream." At the current exchange rate, which is $60 per bitcoin, the house would cost 6,750 BTC.
An aerial view of the land. (Photo: For Sale by Owner)
Here's more about the home and the bitcoin system in the listing:
This quaint 2 bedroom bungalo (sic) sits on 2.9 acres with beautiful mountain views and 110' of breathtaking Crowsnest River frontage. A large 2800 sq ft workshop is perfect for the handyman hobbiest and also features 2 additional finished bedrooms, 1 bath giving an optional business opportunity of a Bed N Breakfast, perfect for anyone who loves the outdoors, or a simple retreat away from the city! Properties like this rarely come on the market and this one's priced to sell.
If you had $405k I wouldn't turn you down but if a partial or whole transaction is done using Bitcoins the price can be reduced depending on how many Bitcoins you have to trade.
Not familiar with Bitcoin yet? Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer decentralized electronic currency allowing you to send money from anywhere to anywhere with no restrictions or national borders.
Where the property is located. (Photo: For Sale by Owner)
Ars Technica gives some further insight into how the value of bitcoins has grown:
The value of bitcoins has appreciated dramatically in recent years. In one of the first Bitcoin transactions ever recorded (which took place in May 2010) a man paid 10,000 BTC for two pizzas. If he'd saved those Bitcoins instead, he could have used them to buy More's house with almost $200,000 to spare.
Bitcoins have also come up in discussions after the events occurring recently in Cyprus. BGR reported seeing a spike in bitcoin-related apps for iPhone in Spain over the weekend, which might be the result of some concerned about the state of banking in Europe:
Bitcoin Gold shot up in the Spanish iPhone Finance category from 498 to 72, and another app called Bitcoin Ticker zoomed from 526 to 52 in just one day. A leading service called Bitcoin App jumped from 194 to 151 between Friday and Sunday as Spaniards brooded over the Cyprus crisis.
The most gruesome part of the Cyprus stunner was that even small accounts may have part of their money confiscated by the government. Everyone knows that small accounts are 100% insured against bankruptcies. Now consumers are learning that no such protections exist against government levies. Newspaper reports about how Germany had originally demanded a 40% overnight levy are not soothing the jitters in Club Med countries. Suddenly Bitcoin looks a bit less risky, at least to Spanish and Italian eyes.
Bloomberg pointed out that even with the uptick of these apps in Spain, the market for iPhones there is relatively small. Only 4 percent of the smartphone market in Spain is iPhone. Bloomberg took a look at Android apps since this platform is more widely used in the country. Although trends on Google Play are harder to spot, it noted that there did seem to be a spike.
BGR reported the app market in Cyprus itself doesn't seem to have a similar jump for bitcoin apps.