Bitcoin Is Currency of Choice for Seller of New York City Condo

Image: Bitcoin Is Currency of Choice for Seller of New York City Condo

Friday, 03 May 2013 03:49 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Bitcoin is the currency of choice for a New York City condo owner who recently put his one-bedroom apartment up for sale with an asking price of 20,874 BTC, equivalent to just over $1.9 million.

Bitcoin is a hot new digital currency and is not managed by any central authority.

The Trump SoHo condo is being advertised exclusively on BitPremier, the first-ever online Bitcoin exchange that exclusively offers luxury goods. The site, which launched on Thursday, is backed by the NYC-based Bitcoin Opportunity Fund.

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In a note provided by BitPremier founder Alan Silbert to Business Insider, the unidentified condo seller explained his reason for choosing the Bitcoin over the U.S. dollar.

"I prefer to own Bitcoin to property that's why I would be happy to sell it in bitcoin," the seller wrote. "I think property is a better asset class than USD, and bitcoin a better asset class than property."

In an interview with Business Insider, Silbert explained BitPremier's goals.

"There are plenty of Bitcoin millionaires out there, and it's burning a hole in their pocket," said Silbert, who is also a vice president for GE Capital. "I think buyers will be easy to come by."

Other luxury items featured on BitPremier include a limited edition signed print of LeRoy Neiman's "Basketball Superstars" from 1977, offered at 103.728 BTC, or $9,750; an ocean-view condo at a Bahamas resort for 5,851.32 BTC, or $550,000; a Ulysse Nardin GMT Perpetual Watch at 267.167 BTC, or $24,900.

"We're finding a lot of wealthy, smart people are getting into the game with Bitcoin," Silbert said. "I think as the ecosystem matures, I think you're going to see a lot more of that."

Not everyone, however, is sold on the Bitcoin's viability.

The day-to-day volatility of Bitcoin has led to some warning the currency is nothing more than a bubble.

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Among some of the concerns expressed by economists as compiled by Newsmax's Moneynews are:

• Since Bitcoin is anonymous, it likely will become a source for terrorists and other criminals to exchange money. This greatly increases the chance of it being regulated.

• Bitcoin wallet service Coinbase was the third Bitcoin platform to suffer a hack in the last week, which caused a sharp temporary drop in the value of Bitcoins.

• Bitcoin is more difficult to buy than other currencies because it is anonymous. You cannot go to a local bank to buy Bitcoins. Since it is difficult to obtain it is likely to make fewer people want to use it.

Related stories:

Bitcoin Hits Speed Bumps in Quest for 'Respectability'

What Could Go Wrong with Bitcoins? A Lot

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