LocalBitcoins: Registration, Trade, Review 2020

a month ago
LocalBitcoins
LocalBitcoins

LocalBitcoins is a good place to buy and sell bitcoins, which is a one-peer platform, i.e. one in which users interact with each other without intermediaries. The platform is perfect for experienced traders and beginners.

Real sellers place their bitcoin ads on Local Bitcoin, establish their course, payment method and other terms of the transaction. To buy bitcoins, you just need to choose a seller with the most suitable conditions. However, it is worth considering that prices on this platform are usually higher. In addition, you must  to show due diligence to avoid fraud.

Also a very important stage is registering on Local Bitcoin. At the moment, it is mandatory. In addition, it is worth considering that even after passing registration and verification on Local Bitcoin, you cannot sell or buy Bitcoin for cash - this option is no longer available.

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Official site LocalBitcoins

More information about the Local Bitcoin website and how to work with it, further in the article.

Registration on Local Bitcoin

How to register at Localbitcoins
How to register at Localbitcoins

How to register at LocalBitcoins:

  1. Go to the website localbitcoins.com or localbitcoins.net.
  2. Click on the “Register’’ button.
  3. Fill out the registration form.
  4. Confirm the registration by clicking on the link of the letter that you will receive on your e-mail.
  5. Enter your personal information, phone number and country of residence.
  6. Enter the code received in SMS into the form.
  7. Start trading!

If you want to know the details of each step, read the details of this manual below.

To access the official website, use the address localbitcoins.com or the mirror Localbitcoins localbitcoins.net. 

The start page of the exchange looks quite simple. Developers decided not to bother with a design on the website and everything is strictly the case.

Localbitcoins Start Page // Source: localbitcoins.com
Localbitcoins Start Page // Source: localbitcoins.com

The system automatically detects your location and sets the language. If you need to change the interface language, you can do this at the bottom of the main page of the site in the “Platform” section. By the way, Localbitcoins took care of the comfort of its users and, taking into account orientation to the world market, offers 7 languages, including Russian, Chinese and Portuguese. 

Settings of the language // Source: localbitcoins.com
Settings of the language // Source: localbitcoins.com

To register, you need to click on the “Register” button in the upper right corner. Next, you need to fill out the registration form and put a mark of acceptance of the privacy policy.

Registration at Localbitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com
Registration at Localbitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com

After this, the standard procedure for confirming registration by email occurs. Follow the link in the letter from Localbitcoins to proceed to the next step. 

The next step is to fill out your profile data. Enter your personal information, phone number and country of residence. After that, the system will send you an SMS code, which you must enter to complete the registration process. 

After registration, Localbitcoins automatically creates a new account and a free Bitcoin wallet for storing coins. 

You can configure account settings, view your profile information, and also get quick access to the main sections of the exchange through your personal account.

User’s personal account // Source: localbitcoins.com
User’s personal account // Source: localbitcoins.com

Security Configuration and Verification

Security at Local Bitcoin
Security at Local Bitcoin

Like any other platform that works with client assets, Local Bitcoin strongly recommends that users pay due attention to profile security. 

In your personal account, a red notification about a weak level of protection is come to the front. Of course, we, as indifferent to the future of our assets, will follow the call of the exchange and go to the section “Account Security”. 

Security Configuration // Source: localbitcoins.com
Security Configuration // Source: localbitcoins.com

The exchange offers you 2 main ways to protect your account:

Set two-factor authentication. This method of protecting your account is often used on exchanges and implies the use of a one-time code in addition to your current password every time you log in. Localbitcoins offers a user choice: 

  • Two-factor authentication with a mobile application - use one-time codes generated by Google Authenticator;
  • Two-factor authentication with printed codes is not the most convenient option, but nonetheless. The exchange will generate in the form of a list of 90 codes that you need to print and use one by one at each request of the system. After the proposed 90 codes are used, you will need to repeat the 2FA connection procedure.

To connect two-factor authentication (2FA) to Localbitcoins, go to the “Two-factor authentication” section, select the required 2FA option and follow the system prompts.

2FA setup // Source: localbitcoins.com
2FA setup // Source: localbitcoins.com

The Login Guard add-on is an addition to 2FA for even more reliable account protection. This smart add-on captures all browsers that log into the system and does not allow logging in from unknown devices. The system sends you an email notification as soon as it detects a danger and requests permission to enter the system.

In addition, Localbitcoins has the ability to view the history of logins in the same section, which, in case of any suspicion, allows you to track the IP addresses from which authorization was carried out on the site. 

Also, in the security settings window, is very prudent to give recommendations for users, how else can you protect your account from malicious activities. Among the recommendations of Localbitcoins: checking the address bar of the browser, using different passwords for different accounts, etc.

Security Settings Window // Source: localbitcoins.com
Security Settings Window // Source: localbitcoins.com

In order for you to have access to the full functionality of the site, the system offers you to go through a quick data verification procedure.

Localbitcoins provides 4 different account levels that differ in the allowable trading volume for 12 months: 

  1. Tier 0 – up to € 1000;
  2. Tier 1 – up to € 20,000;
  3. Tier 2 – up to € 200,000;
  4. Tier 3 – has no limits.

Verification on the Localbitcoins exchange is possible in your account, menu “Account Security”, submenu “Verification”.

Verification // Source: localbitcoins.com
Verification // Source: localbitcoins.com

Each level has its own set of data for verification. The account will be sent for verification of the next level when the volume of transactions reaches the current level limit. 

T1-T3 level accounts can send and receive transactions, create advertisements, and complete sales transactions. T0 level accounts, that is, users who have only an initial verification, can only make purchase transactions.

Local Bitcoin review

Deposit and Withdrawal of Funds to LocalBitcoins

Top-up wallet at Localbitcoins
Top-up wallet at Localbitcoins

The mechanism of depositing and withdrawing funds at Localbitcoins is very simple and straightforward. To deposit or withdraw funds, go to the “Wallet” section. 

Working with an online wallet on Localbitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com
Working with an online wallet on Localbitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com

Here we see 3 tabs:

  • Send Bitcoins – designed to withdraw funds. Enter the address of the recipient wallet in the appropriate field and specify the amount. To confirm the transaction, the system will ask you to enter a two-factor authentication code (if it is installed).

The fee for transferring funds to a third-party wallet is 0.00005 BTC, sending funds between Localbitcoins wallets is no commission. The average withdrawal transaction time is 30-60 minutes. 

  • Copy the address of the bitcoin wallet and use it to transfer funds to Localbitcoins in a way convenient for you.

Commission for replenishment of the balance – 0.00015 BTC.

The average input transaction time is 30 minutes.

For example, a convenient way to enter cryptocurrencies to Local Bitcoin is to use cryptocurrency exchangers.

  • Wallet Transactions – this section will display the history of all your transactions.

Buying and Selling Bitcoins on Local Bitcoin

How to Buy Bitcoin

In order to buy bitcoin on Localbitcoins, go to the “Buy Bitcoins” menu or switch to the “Quick Buy” tab in the buy / sell window on the main page.

Buying Bitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com
Buying Bitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com

In the search box, you must enter the amount of Bitcoins that you wish to purchase, your local currency, country, and also choose a payment method from the drop-down list.

Localbitcoins offers a lot of options for paying bitcoins. This includes popular payment systems, bank transfers, credit card payments, etc. If you are not sure which payment method is right for you, select “All online offers” and click “Search.”

The system will give you all the offers for the sale of bitcoins, in accordance with the specified parameters. All offers are sorted in the table, depending on the rate in descending order. Thus, the ad with the best rate is placed at the top of the table.

Beside to the course, you need to pay attention to the trader’s indicators, who posted the ad. Choose a seller with a large number of transactions and a good reputation. Also, a response time indicator is attached to each trader. The green color of the indicator means that the trader responds within 5 minutes, yellow indicator - the trader answers up to 30 minutes, gray - the trader has delays with answers to customers, the response time exceeds 30 minutes. 

Trader Evaluation // Source: localbitcoins.com
Trader Evaluation // Source: localbitcoins.com

To learn more about the information about the seller, click on his nickname. The system will open his profile to you, where you can see from what date the trader is listed on the exchange, the volume of his transactions, etc.

To view the detailed conditions for a particular ad, click the “Buy” button. Pay attention to the indicator “Payment window”, which determines the time which is allocated to you to pay the invoice for the transaction.

If the conditions of the selected trader suit you, then enter the amount for which you want to buy bitcoins in the window as shown in the picture and click the “Send a request for a deal” button.

Localbitcoins uses a deposit system, which implies that after you send a request for a transaction, the amount of bitcoins you need is blocked until the payment is credited to the seller’s account. Your task at this stage is to invest in the designated payment window, pay the required amount and note the fact of payment in the system. As soon as the seller sees your payment on the account, he will immediately send you bitcoins and they will appear in your wallet.

How to Sell Bitcoin

To sell bitcoins, it is important for you to have them on the balance of your wallet. How to replenish the balance on Localbitcoins we have already considered above, so we go further.

Selling bitcoin on the exchange is similar to buying. Go to the “Sell Bitcoins” menu or switch to the “Quick Sale” tab in the buy / sell window on the main page.

Selling Bitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com
Selling Bitcoins // Source: localbitcoins.com

As with a purchase, in the search box, enter the number of Bitcoins for sale, your local currency, country and payment method. 

Some of the proposed payment methods are quite risky, therefore, Localbitcoins recommends to users to choose low-risk payment methods, including bank transfers and others. 

From the list of offers to buy bitcoin issued by the system we focus on the rating and other indicators of traders. 

After choosing the seller most suitable for you, go to the transaction details by clicking the “Buy” button.

In the transaction details window, once again pay attention to the terms of sale. If everything suits you, enter the amount in the blue field and indicate your payment details for payment. If cash payment is provided, then do not forget to indicate in the chat with the buyer the time and place of the meeting. Next, click the “Send a request for a deal.”

Note, that you need to send bitcoins to the buyer only after the payment has been received in your account. To complete the transaction, select the “Send Bitcoins” option.

How to Place an Ad on Local Bitcoin

Trading on Local Bitcoin
Trading on Local Bitcoin

Since 2018, the option of placing ads on the exchange is available only to verified users. The introduction of an additional level of protection was associated with increased lawsuits against Localbitcoins traders for fraudulent transactions.

In addition to passing verification, another important condition for the management of Localbitcoins - the user must have at least 0.04 BTS in the account before proceeding with the placement of the advertisement.

Localbitcoins charges a commission of 1% for each successful transaction.

To place an ad, go to the “Place an ad” menu and fill out a short application form. It must include all the basic information about your ad: type of announcement (purchase or sale), currency, transaction limits and other transaction conditions. 

I would like to draw attention to the very useful option Localbitcoins, the equation at the price of the transaction. This option allows you to specify the formula by which price the purchase / sale of bitcoin in your ad will be automatically updated depending on the change in the bitcoin exchange rate on the exchange of your choice. Given the volatility of bitcoin, this option helps traders a lot to save time editing their ads. 

The trade price equation is set when filling in the parameters of your ad.

Setting Ad Parameters // Source: localbitcoins.com
Setting Ad Parameters // Source: localbitcoins.com

The exchange also cares about the security of its users and offers you to set a target audience for your ads and exclude possible contact with potential scammers. You can do this in the “Security Settings” block.

Setting Ad Parameters // Source: localbitcoins.com
Setting Ad Parameters // Source: localbitcoins.com

How to Make Money on Localbitcoins

Besides using the site as a one-time need to buy / sell bitcoins, Localbitcoins for many users has become a stable source of additional, and in some cases, basic income. 

There are three ways to capitalize on Localbitcoins:

  1. Buy or sell bitcoins.
  2. Attract referrals.
  3. Find “holes” in the site’s security system and notify the site about it.

Read below about each method in more detail.

Trading at Localbitcoins

Some user profiles have turned into large online exchangers with an established army of regular customers. The exchange does not limit the activities of users in this, but rather, creates favorable conditions for the development of their business. Localbitcoins has taken care of creating a competitive environment between traders and encourages them to trade on the exchange by introducing such concepts:

  1. TOP ads – the top list of ads in the search. Naturally, every seller wants to get into the TOP, but for this it is important to have a pumped profile with good reviews and a large number of completed transactions or simply to offer the best price for the transaction;
  2. Seller rating – any buyer is always looking for a seller, who does not make the first transaction in his life, but already has experience in this deal. The rating is affected by the age of your profile, the number and amount of transactions completed, as well as the presence of the Green Finger, which indicates the reliability of the trader. The exchange assigns a “Finger” automatically, but some experienced traders noticed that this icon appears on the profile after the total amount of its completed transactions exceeds 5 BTC. The most cunning in general have built on this business and trade and trade upgraded accounts, earning from this from 1 thousand dollars. 

You can also simultaneously trade bitcoin on other exchanges.

Affiliate Program

Standard referral program works at the stock exchange. The bonus is paid for attracting new users who will not only register, but will also make transactions on the exchange. You will receive 20% of the Localbitcoins commission from each completed transaction of a new user. The more newcomers with a good turnover, the higher your income. 

Safety Research Awards

Localbitcoins management pays special attention to its users security issues, therefore, I am ready to encourage those who will help improve the service. Everyone who finds a system error or vulnerability, the company is ready to pay a reward. In addition, the site publishes usernames, who have made a significant contribution to improving the security of the exchange. 

History of Localbitcoins

History of Localbitcoins
History of Localbitcoins

Localbitcoins was established in 2012 in Finland. The project was founded by the brothers Nikolaus and Jeremis Kangasy. They wanted to create something unique that is not yet on the market. The emergence of a new startup was facilitated by the fact that their local market did not have an acceptable option for an online exchange to buy bitcoin for fiat. All available sites were either uncomfortable or difficult to use, and Bitcoin transactions were carried out only through a personal meeting with a merchant. 

Localbitcoins was created without attracting capital from outside investors, the brothers took care of all the expenses. Creating a startup cost them only a few thousand dollars, but the value of this investment is growing given that it was all their savings at that time. The brothers believed in the success of their project so much that they did not even think that the project could fail. And they were right.

Today, Localbitcoins is one of the most popular Bitcoin exchange sites and has over a million users from all over the world.

Localbitcoins supports over 60 payment methods, including the most popular payment systems such as Western Union Cash, PayPal, bank transfers, credit cards and even recently it even made it possible to personally meet with a merchant to exchange bitcoins for a local fiat, which made it unique in its sector. 

Unfortunately, in June 2019, the company's management was forced to remove this option from the list of possible payment methods. Such measures were taken as a step in the fight against money laundering, in accordance with Finnish law. Now the purchase and sale of bitcoins on the service is carried out only through electronic means of communication. 

However, the inability to exchange bitcoin for fiat at a personal meeting does not make the exchange less in demand on the market. The variety of other payment methods is very attractive to users, and the fact that traders interact with each other without intermediaries significantly speeds up the exchange process and makes it more transparent. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of Local Bitcoin

During its existence, LocalBitcoins has established itself as a stable platform with numerous customers around the world. The exchange provides a unique cryptocurrency exchange service for fiat, which has very few analogues. 

Among the advantages of the site are:

Cryptocurrency exchange for fiat. This is the main advantage of the site and for what people are registered here. The deal can be executed with traders from more than 240 countries, and bitcoin can be bought for more than 50 different fiat currencies;
A large number of payment methods. A very important advantage and perhaps decisive for some traders when choosing a platform for trading. The platform supports more than 60 payment methods, taking into account the highest rated payment systems and payment cards. Any trader will find a suitable payment method on Localbitcoins;
Quick deals. Due to the lack of intermediaries, all transactions are closed quickly enough, since the seller and the buyer communicate directly.

But like any other platform, LocalBitcoins has its disadvantages:

Supports only Bitcoin. Many users note that it is time for the service to expand and add other cryptocurrencies to the support. Such a move will definitely attract many new traders to the site;
Mandatory verification. On the one hand, this was done to protect exchange users from fraudulent activities, and, on the other hand, some users may be frightened off by verification, since not everyone is willing to spend their time on it;
Lack of anonymity. Considering the fact that buyers and sellers interact directly with each other on the exchange and are themselves responsible for the risks associated with the execution of transactions, before completing the transaction, both the one and the other side may additionally request a photo with a passport in your hands or may establish other conditions that provide for the disclosure of your identity;
Cancellation of the possibility of buying / selling bitcoins for cash in person. Nevertheless, this was the main feature of the exchange and many users came here just for it. Disabling the service caused a lot of indignation among users from different countries and many are already starting to look for an alternative to LocalBitcoins. Remind you that the cancellation of this option was associated with the introduction of new legislation in Finland aimed at combating money laundering; 
No mobile app. Over the 7 years of its existence, the LocalBitcoins team has not yet launched a mobile application for its exchange. Although there are applications from third-party developers that can be found on the App Store or Play Market.

Reviews on Local Bitcoin

Reviews on Local Bitcoin
Reviews on Local Bitcoin

Mostly reviews about Local Bitcoin are positive. One of the main positive aspects of the site is its fast exchange rate. 

And in general, users are very pleased with the site. But, unfortunately, there are also negative reviews about Local Bitcoin, which do not look like custom ones. For example, users complain about the lack of a mobile application.

In addition, in the past few years, the network is filled with reviews of the “schemes” for cheating newcomers. In addition, the name of the site appears in high-profile cases, where they were convicted of fraudulent transactions by LocalBitcoins traders.

The good news is that the exchange is not waiting and trying to regain a positive reputation. The team introduced mandatory verification to access some options of the exchange and canceled the bitcoin exchange in person.

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