EstateGuru claims to have participated in the first 100 per cent contact-free property deal in history, as the industry adapts to the challenges of the coronavirus crisis.
The European peer-to-peer lender worked with public notary Paavo Uibopuu, real estate agency LVM and a private individual buyer on the sale of an apartment in Tartu, Estonia, in a building that historically belonged to the pre-war politician Jaan Tõnisson.
The change in ownership – from approaching the buyer and property inspection, to the actual transfer of possession – took place without a single face-to-face meeting, EstateGuru said.
EstateGuru had funded the renovation of the apartment before it was sold, and the loan was paid back before the deadline.
The 100 per cent contact-free transaction was made possible thanks to the launch of a new notary self-service portal, that enables remote notarization – allowing parties to complete transactions from abroad without a physical visit to the notary.
“It is great to witness different players in the property market increasingly adopt digital services – this fosters market development and also supports the plans and ambitions of EstateGuru,” said Daniil Aal, head of group sales at EstateGuru.
“In addition to its current digital services, EstateGuru has also set up an ambitious data science plan and a team of data scientists to merge service providers, small- and medium-sized enterprises and investors in different markets into a single functioning real estate market and to provide something unique compared to other financial institutions – a simple cross-border digital service to borrowers and investors.”
Shortly after news of the pandemic emerged, LVM launched a contact-free brokering service to support digital transactions.
“Initially, we only meant to promote properties to our customers through video links but due to customer demand, we extended the service quickly to include consultations, conclusion of contracts and even price negotiations,” said Philip Saksing, head of LVM’s Tartu office. “Just during last week, the volume of contact-free services doubled at LVM; as people value highly not only their health but also their time.”