Queensland Rolls Out World First Digital Tenancy Agreements


The Real Estate Institute of Queensland has announced a joint venture with local startup Igloo to develop a blockchain-based tenancy agreement platform.

The REIQ has partnered with the Brisbane technology firm Igloo to create the “new generation” tenancy agreement product, which will be available via the Institute’s Realworks form generation software.

With almost 400,000 form 18a’s (residential tenancy agreements) generated each year through Realworks, the REIQ identified property management was a logical place to focus on.

The platform has the potential to transform the way that tenancy agreements are transacted across the nation and around the globe, and create an unparalleled, real-time database of rental prices and trends.

New smart contracts would use blockchain technology to create a simple and secure transaction for each tenancy agreement.

Blockchains are shared, tamperproof, peer-to-peer digital ledgers that enable a single, global version of transaction truth.

▲ The REIQ has continued its digital transformation led by general manager, Josh Callaghan.
▲ The REIQ has continued its digital transformation led by general manager, Josh Callaghan.

Currently property investors have to rely on rental data that may not reflect the actual details of the tenancy agreement.

The roll-out of a world-first project will now see residential tenancy agreements transformed into digital smart contracts, including automated payments associated with the agreement.

The new product benefited all parties to the agreement by providing more transparency and functionality, REIQ general manager Josh Callaghan said.

“The instant a tenancy agreement is signed, we will know how much a property was rented for, how long the agreement is for, how long it was vacant and so on, which will give the REIQ unprecedented insights into rental market trends as it happens.”

Callaghan said the innovation would make renting a property much easier and more transparent for tenants giving users a real-time view of the State’s rental market.

“As a startup, we knew that our world-leading technology could vastly improve the way that people are connected with property, but we needed an established partner to take it to market,” Igloo founder Jeremy Hastings said.

“The REIQ not only had the most widely used forms product in the state, it was also open to challenging the status quo – an essential element for working with us to drive value back into the tenancy process.”

The proptech innovation, which will see residential tenancy agreements able to be executed as a digital smart contract, will be rolled out across Queensland by the end of this year.

The New South Wales government in October said it was looking to make property conveyancing into an electronic process, turning to distributed ledger technology as a means to make the practice cheaper, more reliable, and more secure.

The NSW Land Registry Services kicked off a proof of concept with Stockholm-based ChromaWay, which will be built on the startup's open source technology.

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