Apartment Listing Service Accepting BitCoin from Landlords

 Apartment search marketplace RentHop just announced that it will now accept Bitcoin (BTC) from landlords and real estate brokers advertising apartments for rent.

Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency that enables instant payments to anyone, anywhere in the world. It uses an open-source peer-to-peer technology to operate with no central authority.

Starting December 15th, landlords, private owners, and real estate agents will be able to pay for advertising credits on RentHop using Bitcoin. To encourage adoption of the currency, the BTC pricing will receive a steep discount to the USD pricing.

Currently, landlords and real estate agents pay $2 to post a rental listing and to keep it active on the site. However, for those paying in Bitcoin, a listing will only cost 0.833 milli-bitcoin (1/1000th of a bitcoin). At today’s exchange rates, this equates to $0.76 per post.

“RentHop has always catered to early adopters exploring innovations in real estate,” explained CEO Lee Lin. “Over the years we’ve noticed the most successful landlords are the ones who proactively seek out and embrace new and disruptive platforms. Bitcoin users are exactly the type of participant we welcome to our marketplace.”

The company currently holds a working balance of Bitcoin for transactions. However, as it receives Bitcoin payments, it intends to accumulate the currency. Many vendors immediately convert Bitcoin purchases to USD, forcing customers to bear the exchange-rate volatility of owning BTC. However, within a 30% band, RentHop plans to keep the BTC price constant. “We have a lot of faith in the long-term potential of Bitcoin as both a payment platform and a store of value,” said RentHop co-founder and CTO Lawrence Zhou. “We would love to see a world where members of the real-estate ecosystem accept BTC, for example, as a low-friction mechanism for processing application fees, key deposits, or even rent payments.We want to help bring it one step closer to realization. No more heading to the bank to print cashier’s checks, or waiting days for wires to clear.”

Founded in 2009, RentHop co-founders Lawrence Zhou and Lee Lin say their company simplifies real estate decisions using technology and data analysis, and offers the most sophisticated apartment quality ranking algorithms, helping apartment hunters quickly sift through large pools of inventory to find the most appropriate listings. RentHop has also created the innovative “Appointments on Demand” feature, which allows renters to locate brokers and property managers available to show apartments in real time and to schedule viewings quickly and easily using RentHop’s integrated messaging tools.

RentHop is funded by Y Combinator and currently serves the NYC, Boston and Chicago metro areas. To find out more, visit www.RentHop.com.

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