While many people have heard of Facebook's blockchain-powered digital world, the “Metaverse,” one of the most popular places investors are buying digital land and real estate is in Decentraland.
Decentraland is one of the largest online gaming platforms where anyone can buy, sell, or rent virtual properties with cryptocurrency. Blockchain experts Ari Meilich and Esteban Ordano founded the Ethereum-based platform in 2015, and it has grown into a global network of dedicated users since opening to the public in 2020. If you're interested in grabbing your spot in Decentraland, keep reading to learn how to stake your claim.
What Is Decentraland?
Decentraland is a three-dimensional virtual world where users can play games, explore, communicate with other players, and participate in the digital real estate market. It has a native, Ethereum-based currency that users can spend to buy land, wearables, items, and services.
The platform’s name comes from the words “decentral” and “land,” signifying a decentralized world run by its investors rather than a single government.
How Does It Work?
While you can do just about anything you can dream of in Decentraland, investors are focused on the digital real estate aspect of the game. Each piece of land, known as a parcel, is 16 meters by 16 meters—the smallest size of land you can purchase. Individuals can buy several linked parcels to form an Estate, a larger portion of land that’s more desirable and easier to develop.
Decentraland has 90,601 plots, including private parcels, districts, roads, and plazas. Like real-life property, location is the most important factor in the value of digital land. A parcel’s distance from roads, districts, and popular attractions also significantly affects its price.
Decentraland’s native currency, MANA, or the Eretheum cryptocurrency, can be used when buying land. Landowners can choose to develop their property as they see fit, hire someone to create content for them, or rent it to someone else. Your proof of ownership will be the non-fungible tokens (NFTs) known as LAND you receive from the transaction.
Each LAND token has information tied to it, including its virtual coordinates and distance from roads and other locations. These tokens allow you to participate in Decentraland’s governance, run by the Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO). Landowners can give their input on how Decentraland develops and vote on various proposals.
What Is MANA?
MANA is Decentraland’s native currency users use to spend on in-game land, avatars, clothes, services, and more. It’s an ERC-20 fungible token that uses Ethereum’s blockchain for records and transactions. You can purchase MANA on a cryptocurrency exchange like Binance or Kraken and store it in your digital or hardware wallet.
Owning MANA allows you to participate in Decentraland’s economy and governing processes and exchange it for LAND tokens. Due to the growing popularity of cryptocurrency and virtual real estate, MANA’s price has skyrocketed over the last few years. Like most cryptocurrencies, it can be very volatile.
Three Tokens on Decentraland
Decentraland has three tokens originating from the platform: MANA, LAND, and Estate. MANA is an ERC-20 token, while LAND and Estate are ERC-721 tokens.
- MANA: ERC-20 tokens like MANA are fungible, meaning they have no unique properties and are interchangeable. Since they’re identical, MANA tokens are ideal as Decentraland’s currency for buying land, items, and services in the game.
- LAND: You can exchange MANA for LAND, ERC-721 tokens that are non-fungible tokens (NFTs). NFTs have properties that distinguish them from each other, meaning they aren’t interchangeable. This characteristic makes them suitable for creating unique items, such as avatars and land parcels.
- Estate: Another type of ERC-721 token, Estate tokens represent merged parcels of land and allow you to manage and develop multiple properties.
Three Ethereum smart contracts define the tokens: the MANAtoken, LANDregistry, and EstateRegistry contracts. Each transaction in Decentraland goes on the Ethereum blockchain, creating a registry of ownership for the game’s virtual assets.
Decentraland’s technical infrastructure runs on three levels of components that the developers built using Ethereum smart contract. These smart contracts are automatically-executed programs that operate without the need for intervention. The following are the three layers determining Decentraland’s protocol:
- Consensus layer- It acts as a ledger to track land parcels, their details, and who owns them.
- Land content layer- This component is a decentralized storage system for rendering the virtual world. Information needed for rendering the land includes content files, scripting entry points, and P2P interactions. Users voluntarily host these files to support Decentraland’s infrastructure.
- Real-time layer- Users can communicate with each other using servers hosted by landowners or third parties that enable peer-to-peer connections. These connections allow social interactions like seeing other users’ avatars, voice chat, and messaging.
What Crypto Is accepted?
MANA is the native currency for buying in-world items and land in Decentraland, and it can be purchased through a cryptocurrency exchange. You will need a digital wallet to purchase MANA, which also serves as the storage for your Decentraland assets, including LAND tokens. You can also buy items with Ethereum as long as the currency is in your digital wallet before the transaction.
How to Buy Virtual Land on Decentraland
LAND is the most significant asset in Decentraland. Users visit properties to play games, shop for in-game items or services, and have various virtual experiences that other users create. Buying, selling, or renting properties in advantageous locations can potentially earn you a significant profit from shoppers eager to build the next big thing on your plot.
You can purchase land on OpenSea, an NFT trading platform, or directly through the Decentraland Marketplace. If you’re new to virtual real estate, it’s crucial to research before purchasing land. Once you’re ready to take the leap, follow the steps below to buy land in Decentraland:
1. Sign up on the Decentraland Marketplace
You must have an account to purchase land, so first things first: Go to Decentraland’s Marketplace and create an account. You’ll need to connect your digital wallet, such as MetaMask or Coinbase, with your MANA or Ethereum in it.
2. Choose a Parcel of Land
Once you’re signed in, go to the “Land” tab to view the parcels available for purchase. The land that’s for sale will be a light blue color. You can look around Decentraland’s map and click on specific pieces of land to view their properties, such as the coordinates, highlights, and the owner’s name.
3. Purchase Your Land
Once you’ve decided on the parcel you want, you’ll have the option to bid or buy. Clicking “buy” will purchase the land at its current market price. Bidding allows you to make an offer.
4. Connect Your Wallet to the Marketplace
If your digital wallet isn’t already connected to your Decentraland Marketplace account, you’ll need to link them together before you can make a purchase. If you have enough MANA or Ethereum in your wallet for the transaction, you can proceed with the purchase.
Remember that you’ll need to account for transaction and gas fees. You’ll need to pay for “gas” on most NFT purchases, determined by the computations it takes to verify transactions. Cryptocurrency mining equipment uses a massive amount of power, and gas fees act as incentives for miners.
5. Confirm Your Purchase
A confirmation will appear once you buy the land, and the transaction processing should take seconds to minutes. Your NFT LAND token will appear in your digital wallet within minutes of confirming the sale.
How to Choose Your Virtual Land?
In Decentraland, plazas are hot spots of activity. Genesis Plaza is where every user starts in the world, meaning it’s one of the most popular areas to be around. Like in real life, properties near plazas and other attractions are much more valuable.
When deciding which virtual land to buy, it’s essential to consider the distance from roads, districts, and plazas. This information conveniently appears in the details of each property for sale under the “Highlights” section. For example, the description of a pricey lot might say it’s four parcels away from a plaza and adjacent to a road.
If you struggle with visualizing what a suitable property looks like in Decentraland, you can always create an avatar and do some virtual scouting.
How Much Does Land Cost on Decentraland?
Thanks in part to Meta, Decentraland has skyrocketed in popularity. In November 2021, after Facebook announced its new image, investors scrambled to purchase valuable land in the growing virtual reality world. During those few days, the average price of land in Decentraland was $52,143. However, the overall average price hovers around $4,000.
Is Decentraland a Good Investment?
Decentraland relies on the continued interest of its users, and the metaverse is a growing phenomenon in the world. If the virtual platform continues to grow with the dedication and creativity of all the individuals and businesses that have invested in it, Decentraland property could become a hugely coveted asset.
Simply buying land and selling it for a profit isn’t the only way to make money from Decentraland. Landowners can rent out their properties, organize virtual product showcases, provide valuable services, or use any other methods of monetizing their skills.
Pros of Investing In Decentraland Real Estate
Buying land in Decentraland gives you a unique opportunity to make money. As a plus, the decentralized platform won’t take a cut of your earnings. Purchasing land is a relatively simple process available to everyone, so the bar is low for entry in terms of technical skills.
If you’d rather utilize the land than sit on it until the value goes up, you could create something to attract other users to your spot. Creative people can build the game or house of their dreams, or the landowner can pay someone to develop their land.
Since the concept of virtual real estate is still new, you have a much better chance to make a profit in the near future as the popularity of Decentraland continues to grow. Whether you’re a shrewd investor or an entrepreneur, purchasing property in this digital world gives you a chance for self-made success.
Cons of Investing In Decentraland Real Estate
Cryptocurrency is very volatile, so investors should be cautious when buying land. It’s best to research Decentraland and how the virtual world works rather than jump in blindly. Experience with cryptocurrencies isn’t a requirement, but it would give you a considerable advantage when purchasing.
Since the value of Decentraland real estate heavily depends on the platform’s popularity, you’ll always risk buying land that steadily depreciates in the long term. While virtual real estate investors everywhere hope for another Facebook metaverse announcement, no guarantee exists that it will have the same effect it did the first time.
Invest In Decentraland (MANA) In A Crypto IRA Today!
Investors have access to many distinctive ways of making a profit with cryptocurrency, and virtual real estate is one of the most interesting. People have dreamed of living in virtual reality for decades, and many books, movies, and shows feature the concept, which continues to drive its popularity.
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