Miami-based fintech startup Milo is reportedly launching the world’s first “crypto mortgage.” The digital bank will allow crypto investors to use their digital assets to buy real estate in the United States
Currently, only customers who wish to use Bitcoin (BTC) as collateral qualify for Milo’s 30-year mortgage loan. Both American and international clients can use the service to buy real estate in the United States. Milo’s website states:
“Instead of selling your crypto for a down payment to qualify for a mortgage, a crypto mortgage lets you use your crypto to invest in real estate.”
Milo says it’s already made some loans as part of its early access phase, and expects the service to be available to most applicants on its waitlist in the coming months.
It remains unclear how much BTC is needed to collateralize a loan, or how much over-collateralization is needed to offset the digital asset’s volatility. Cointelegraph reached out to Milo for more details and will update this story once we receive feedback.
BREAKING: You can now buy a house with #Bitcoin as collateral and ZERO fiat deposit with Mortgage Bank Milo.
— Bitcoin-Archiv (@BTC_Archive) January 18, 2022
Josip Rupena, CEO and founder of Milo, said the idea came about in response to the “untold stories” of people cashing out their BTC to buy properties only to see them appreciate in value later.
“Existing opportunities for crypto consumers to access home equity finance have left them with unintended tax liabilities for selling for a down payment, or worse, the opportunity cost of increasing the value of their crypto.”
Milo says the company’s other mortgage solution for foreign nationals has already granted millions of dollars in loans and has seen applicants from more than 63 countries. It allows non-US residents to close their home loans remotely without having to travel to the US or an embassy.
Introducing Rupena at the North American Bitcoin Conference on Jan. 17, pro-crypto Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said the Bitcoin mortgage was a “groundbreaking achievement” in promoting U.S. dominance in the Bitcoin ecosystem .
“To become the capital of capital, Miami needs companies like Milo that are willing to innovate and generate ideas,” he added.
Milo isn’t the first company to target a crypto mortgage.
In August 2021, United Wholesale Mortgage began testing the waters for crypto mortgage repayments using Ether and BTC in a pilot program. However, by October it had abandoned its plans due to regulatory uncertainties.
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Milo behaved $6 million in seed funding from investors including QED investors, Metaprop and 10x Capital in January 2021.
Rupena previously worked at multinational investment banking firms Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs.