Tech forward firm revolutionises house buying with eBay-style auction

A law firm has facilitated the first fully electronic housing auction with the use of e-contracts.

Australia’s first ever e-property contract auction took place on Sunday, facilitated by a system developed by law firm Colin Biggers & Paisley.

In conjunction with DocuSign, 31 residential land lots in Sydney’s Gledwood Hills were sold in the first fully fledge e-property contract auction.

“E-contracts will haul the real estate market out of the dark ages and pave the way for properties to be bought and sold entirely online - just like any other commodity on e-bay,” said Colin Biggers & Paisley property partner, Mark Morgan. 

“The need to physically trudge from one auction to another will be a thing of the past.”

Morgan predicted that the ability for house buyers to simply toggle between auctions to make a purchase online, may not be far off.

“Unlike paper contracts, legally binding property e-contracts can be signed anywhere, any time and on any internet device, making it just as easy for a potential purchaser in London, New York or Shanghai as it is for a local to participate in the auction or launch of a new residential development anywhere in Australia,” he said.

Fast tracking the sale and limiting the transaction costs, the firm predicts electronic contracts will be a huge efficiency for housing developers and real estate agents.

“E-contracts are clearly the way of the future.  They deliver convenience, added security, and time and cost savings for both buyers and sellers.  It’s time we buried paper contracts for good,” Morgan said. 

Colin Biggers & Paisley claim the electronic contracts used are more secure than paper, and cannot be altered.

“There is no limit on the range of contracts to which the e-contract system can ultimately be applied,” Morgan said, predicting paperless contract future.

“There remain a number of areas of contract law where legislation either prohibits or restricts the use of e-contracts, but these problem areas will in due course disappear as the law steadily catches up with currently available information technology.

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