Vancouver rental platform embraces crypto craze, letting tenants pay with Bitcoin


VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Amid the cryptocurrency craze, a Vancouver company is now letting tenants pay their rent in Bitcoin.

For many of us, the only time we actually take out the chequebook is to pay our landlord, but is going the other direction allowing tenants to [pay their rent in Bitcoin.

“How this happens is — same with any payment method — will actually initiate the payment request, and renters can choose from a selection of options, including credit card and Bitcoin, and they proceed to pay with either Coinbase or any other kind of crypto wallet that they use. And the landlord can actually receive Canadian [dollars],” Marketing Manager Matisse Yiu says.

Michael Vogel is the head of Vancouver-based Coinstream. He says, in terms of security, Bitcoin transactions actually leave users less vulnerable.

“I think the nice thing with Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general, is it gives the power to the consumer. They don’t have to give up personal information the same way that they do when they spend with a credit card, for example,” he says.

“The risk is still very real when you shop online and use your credit card, and that data can get hacked, or lost, depending on how secure the provider is. And so the nice thing with Bitcoin is you’re not giving up that info when you’re making a transaction. So that would be one advantage to paying via crypto.”

And while credit card companies may charge people about a 3 per cent transaction fee, Yiu says for Bitcoin it is 0.5 per cent.

“It’s a very viable alternative that displaces banks and credit cards,” Vogel notes.

“In the ideal, we would be able to transfer crypto to someone else, and you don’t need to use a bank or credit card and there’s no fees involved. In the current landscape of Bitcoin, right now, it’s a little bit a victim of its own success. There’s some scaling issues with Bitcoin and actually can be quite expensive to pay with Bitcoin through for especially for small amounts. But the hope is that these challenges will be solved.”

So far has received positive feedback about the new option, and Yiu says she’s excited to see how the new feature is used.