Realtors® Work with Tech Industry to Leverage Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency to Benefit Consumers

BOSTON (November 5, 2018) – Sunday, at the 2018 REALTOR® Conference & Expo in Boston, Massachusetts, the National Association of Realtors® hosted a forum centered around blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies in the real estate market. The session, officially titled “Blockchain, Bitcoin & Robots in Real Estate,” was led by Bill Lublin, technology author and CEO of Century 21 Advantage Gold.

Lublin, whose agency serves suburban Philadelphia neighborhoods in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, began the conversation by discussing the fundamental components of bitcoin and the likelihood of the cryptocurrency becoming an accepted funding source for home purchases in the future. The conversation then shifted toward the components and complexities of adapting blockchain services into members’ respective businesses.

“The thing I want to caution you about, is that just adding the term blockchain to a business doesn’t make it a winner. Blockchain does get mentioned a lot, and I’ve seen reports from analysts that claim just the word ‘blockchain’ added to a business plan made company valuation increase 35 percent, almost automatically. But, in reality, sometimes that blockchain technology doesn’t add any value to the process,” Lublin said

“We know that new technologies allow professionals in the real estate industry to improve efficiency in so many ways. As the industry changes, NAR’s voice can shape the direction in which we evolve along with emerging technology. When I became CEO, one of my first strategic priorities was to build relationships in the technology industry. So, as cryptocurrency and bitcoin developments occur going forward, NAR can ensure that Realtors® are there to offer insights that can improve the consumer experience,” said NAR CEO Bob Goldberg.

Lublin’s firm is the No. 1 Century 21 firm in Pennsylvania. In addition to serving as CEO of the Social Media Marketing Institute (SMMI), he is the author of the 2010 and 2015 rewrites of e-Pro® and is also the creator of NAR's TechEdge event. In his remarks, he also cautioned agents and brokers to understand blockchain and bitcoin are separate entities.

“When bitcoin was released as open source code in 2009, blockchain was wrapped up together with bitcoin in the same solution. But they aren’t the same thing,” Lublin said.

As conversations around blockchain and bitcoin seep further into the real estate industry, Realtors® must ensure they understand all the consequences of this evolution. Lublin then began to discuss artificial intelligence and its impact on real estate professionals and the industry as a whole.

“I don’t think you have to worry about AI replacing real estate agents. But while I think AI probably won’t eliminate us, I do think it will make us more efficient. We interact with AI daily. Siri, Alexa, Netflix, Pandora, Spoitfy; you name it.

“What this AI is also driving is all kinds of personalization efforts, like customized email blasts, and these are positive progressions and developments for real estate agents,” Lublin concluded.

The National Association of Realtors® is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.3 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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