The problem with today’s housing development process revolves around a combination of factors. Economic disincentives, lack of innovative projects being funded and an exploitable planning system. This pretty much boils down to speculation, which has huge financial, and social repercussions on the housing system.
In the speculative model, developers make all the decisions, they are motivated by profit alone and actually have an incentive to build at the lowest quality and slowly enough that housing undersupply keeps the property prices high. In this system, people have no choice but to assume the role of a passive observer, buying or renting what’s provided or available in the market. This creates a housing system which is geared towards developers and delivers very little social value. However what choice do councils have but to eventually grant planning on schemes which only just meet affordable housing targets or lack key services that should really be provided. If housing continues to be built in the same way, then we are unnecessarily condemning another generation of people to be trapped in a cycle of mediocre planning and construction.
This model persists the world over as larger interests can accumulate land and slowly build out for their benefit. This is the epitome of a broken housing market.
Housing prices are spiraling out of control while the quality of the construction is compromised or rises ever so slightly with the introduction of housing regulations by policymakers. The houses which do get built are of poor quality in comparison to potential housing designs, they have low environmental standards, and are not user-oriented but profit-making ventures. The technology to mass produce sustainable, customizable, modern and affordable homes on a global scale exists but this technology is primarily used by small developers who struggle to compete with the speculative housing development model.
To provide a solution to this systemic issue, Ehab — a new blockchain based startup is looking to empower people to create their own homes, neighborhoods, and cities within a unique ecosystem. This enables individuals and groups to collaborate on the same platform with innovative designers and developers in an effort to create high quality mixed developments of a more affordable housing.
The blockchain based solution
Ehab (Pre-Sale running 9th-19th of February) is the first crowdfunding platform for people-led affordable housing development powered by blockchain technology. The platform seeks to decentralize and democratize the housing development industry, by providing real choice for people at the lower price brackets of the housing market. One of the key ways to enable this is to provide innovative developers who create factory-made housing, access to cheaper finance, only made possible via a blockchain based crowdfunding mechanism, powered by tokens.
Property crowdfunding has seen big growth since it came into the scene over 5 years ago. However, it still only accounts for a small percentage of total development finance. This is because investments have not been liquid –locking cash into projects with no definitive ROI horizon, crowdfunding platforms are charging high commission fees on equity profits, arduous on-boarding processes have deterred both developers and buyers, and the platforms have not been able to access and propose enough projects.
Ehab facilitates affordable projects with trusted partners, slashes on-boarding through automation, provides investors with liquidity and eliminates excessive fees because we can rely on a scalable blockchain based platform for revenue. The ecosystem will be powered by a reputation system to create trusted networks that bring together the community, developers, buyers, and investors to accelerate the construction of more affordable housing.
The Ehab platform is designed for collaboration, with communities and housing professionals being matched through preferences and then working together to design projects for the benefit of both. This early community engagement is unique in the housing world and benefits crowdfunding as it creates a dedicated core of users who can invite friends, family, and locals to be the first investors, and then evangelize about their project helping the fundraising process.
By committing to modern methods of construction and creating a platform which enables these developers to scale, Ehab can provide a long-term solution for upgrading the housing system, which will forever change how housebuilding and house financing occurs.
The house building process
When homebuyers, landowners, and developers join Ehab, they meet through an embedded discovery mechanism which matches collaborators by their needs. Homebuyers then communicate more detailed design information about their dream homes, while developers can upload plans and initial sketches to gather feedback. The platform uses blockchain to gather transparent and fair voting rounds, allowing the group to collaboratively come up with a shared vision of designs that meets the community’s needs.
Once projects have achieved consensus in the design room, they are listed on the crowdfunding marketplace. Smart contracts then generate the new Ehab property tokens (EHP) that are tied to the project and can be bought by investors. Local investors get priority access to any new opportunities before the offering is open to the global crowdfunding community. Through a powerful network of institutional finance, unsold allocations are sold, ensuring no projects are stalled by slow financing. Homebuyers are offered fair mortgage terms and get access to innovative alternatives in shared ownership. All agreements are then documented and secured by Ehab’s smart contracts and stored on the blockchain.
Once funded, the contractors collaborate with the service providers to work on the project where homeowners and backers can keep tabs on the project using the Construction Tracker to share updates with the project ecosystem. Smart contracts will be used to govern and incentivize timely construction, triggering payments to release against project milestones.
Ehab tokens will be issued during the token sale period. The Ehab presale will open on the 9th of February 2018 and close on the 19th of February 2018. The main sale will open on the 1st of March 2018 and close on 30th April 2018.
More information about Ehab is available at – https://ehab.co/
The Whitelist is now open for registration on the site to make sure you can access the 50% bonus. If investing more than 1 ETH, you will be included in the private sale with a 55% bonus.