Earlier this month a studio apartment in Kyiv, Ukraine was sold at auction as an NFT. The auction was held on 9th June 2021 by Propy Inc., a real estate transaction platform. A 27 hour long bidding war ended in a winning bid of 36 ETH (approx $93,000 at time of sale). This transaction was the first of its kind and marked a step forward in the functionality of blockchains and NFTs.

The Property

The apartment is located in the Svyatoshino neighbourhood in Kyiv, Ukraine. The one bedroom studio apartment has an area of 505.9 sqft. The NFT included access to ownership transferred paperwork, a printed cyberpunk picture, a unique digital art NFT by Chizz, a street artist in Kyiv, and the physical painting of the digital artwork on a wall of the apartment.

How it worked

The apartment was bought by Michael Arrington, the founder of TechCrunch, via smart contracts in 2017. He bought the apartment through a US based LLC and this LLC is currently the owner of the apartment on the Ukrainian land registry records. This allows the LLC and attached home ownership to be traded endlessly as an NFT.

Michael Arrington, the initial owner of the apartment, began the transaction by signing legal documents for the NFT to transfer ownership of the property to the buyer. Propy then auctioned the NFT, received the payment in Ethereum and transferred it to Arrington’s wallet. The ownership of the apartment was then transferred to Devon Bernard, the winning bidder, after he filled out KYC (Know Your Customer) documentation.

Devon Bernard, a tech entrepreneur from California, said he has no plans to live in the apartment. Instead he wants to rent it out using blockchain technology and smart contracts. Each visitor will get an NFT and write a message in a smart contract guest book.

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