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ShelterZoom has been making headlines in the blockchain space over the past year or so. A new segment of the company, Mithra Contract, set to be released later this year, is reportedly the first tokenized digital legal contract platform in real estate. It is looking to disrupt how consumers, agents and real estate lawyers transact.
Mithra is a decentralized contract that can be executed and read by a machine, as well as humans. It is legally binding. Although allegedly industry-agnostic, this contract and transaction management platform hopes to offer transparency and efficiency to all parties involved in a real estate deal.
To understand how Mithra works, let’s break down the difference between today’s most commonly used tech-friendly contracts:
- Smart Contract – A computerized contract with terms that have already been agreed upon. It works to automatically satisfy these terms.
- Ricardian Contract – A digital contract that defines terms and conditions between two or more peers. It is signed and verified cryptographically and can be read by both humans and machines.
Mithra Contract—a blend of paper, smart and Ricardian contracts—will allegedly provide users with myriad online tools, including contract templates, negotiation capabilities, an online chat, a shareable contract link, document management, and more.
The platform is set to be powered by crypto-tokens called Mithra Coins (SMC). They will reportedly record contract details in a secure, indisputable format. Through this platform, ShelterZoom hopes to reduce the time it takes to negotiate and close a real estate transaction to just 72 hours by 2021.
“The release of Mithra Contract, ShelterZoom Mithra Coins and Mithra Tokens signals the beginning of a new digital era of deal, contract and transaction management,” said Chao Cheng-Shorland and Allen Alishahi, ShelterZoom co-founders, in a statement. “It is the first time that any individual or organization can make deals, create contracts and close transactions on immutable, auditable and transportable tokens—all secured in their digital wallet. We’re excited to have created a platform that will help move blockchain toward adoption with a product that creates real value in people’s daily lives.”
While ShelterZoom alleges that Mithra Contract is the first of its kind to offer industry-agnostic services, there are other entrants in the real estate space that look to offer similar services. SMARTRealty, for example, launching in June 2019, is another smart contract platform that promotes simpler real estate transactions through blockchain and cryptocurrency.
Cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile. Bitcoin is now up 15 percent after a few months of devastating dips, crashing to its lowest point at the end of last year, according to Gizmodo. For smart contracts that use cryptocurrency to fund transactions, this could spell trouble; however, recording real estate transactions on blockchain ledgers could help the industry. Smart contracts are said to shorten transaction time significantly, and could increase transparency surrounding commissions and fees, as well as help protect data.
Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s associate content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at email@example.com.