Lake Tahoe-area property sells for $1.6 million – all in bitcoins

08/15/2014 8:02 PM

08/18/2014 6:10 AM

It’s not unusual for a Lake Tahoe-area property to sell for $1.6 million. Except when the transaction is made in bitcoins, the virtual – and controversial – online currency.

That’s what happened last week when an unidentified Silicon Valley resident purchased a 1.4-acre home site in the upscale Martis Camp development, a gated community between Truckee and Lake Tahoe.

The bitcoin-to-dollars transaction was a first for the development company. Martis Camp sales director Brian Hull admits he was a little concerned about the transaction.

“We didn’t know much about (Bitcoin).” But using an exchange company, Atlanta-based BitPay, to facilitate the transaction, it became much like any other real estate transaction – only faster, Hull said.

“We actually closed in the quickest time frame that we’ve ever closed on a developer lot transaction.”

The sale of the property closed Aug. 6 and is believed to be one of the largest real estate transactions using Bitcoin, the online currency that’s been around only since 2009.

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