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Five Steps of a Bitcoin Transaction

I understand, you are impulsive and just heard about this newfangled thing called Bitcoin and the first thing you want to do is go out and make a transaction. Sure, you could read this entire guide. But what if you want to just get down to it and buy something with bitcoins in the next 30 minutes? You learn by doing so here you go! STEP ONE You need a wallet to have bitcoins you purchase sent to. For this I recommend Blockchain.info for a web based wallet or Breadwallet for the iPhone. Blockchain.info has had security issues in the past so only keep minimal funds in it. If you want the ultimate in security then Armory is the only solution for true cold storage. I us both and it comes down to time or money..... So pick your poison! STEP TWO So what fancy new product or service do you want to buy? Well, it would be good to know approximately how many bitcoins are needed. Perhaps it is the $3 Mini-Guide To Financial Privacy (<---- click the link!) to say Thank You since this guide is so helpful.

STEP THREE Now you need to get some bitcoins into your brand new wallet. Circle is another option to link with your bank account via ACH or credit cards. You can usually have Bitcoins in under ten minutes.  By now hopefully you have a friend or two you can buy a bitcoin from. Or you might be able to find someone at a local Meetup group or perhaps on Local Bitcoins but be very careful. Speed & Privacy Tip: Get some bitcoins from a friend for some cash. Sure, the effective exchange rate may be rather steep but if you are only exchanging $40-60 (1 year VPN is about $40 and you should definitely buy it with bitcoins!) and learning how to use this magic Internet money then just chalk it up to Bitcoin school. Time or money ..... and be sure to get a comfortable margin of extra bitcoins because the exchange rate fluctuates. Nothing is more annoying than being .2 BTC short and having to make another trip!

STEP FOUR Ok, now it is time to go to the website where you want to make the purchase. If you already had it open then refresh the webpage so that any payment amounts get updated to the current exchange rate. If you chose Blockchain.info then login, click the Send Money tab and do a Quick Send to the wallet address for payment (copy and paste that big nasty thing above Waiting For Payment!) and specify the number of bitcoins (1.209 in this case). If you chose Breadwallet then paste the wallet payment address into the Send Payment section, specify the number of bitcoins (1.209 in this case) and click send!

STEP FIVE Once you click Send then the payment should be submitted to the network for confirmation. A confirmation is where a the bitcoin network recognizes the transaction as valid and irrevocably moves the bitcoins from one wallet address to another. Some processors require 0 confirmations and others 6+. With the Mini-Guide To Financial Privacy we use Bitpay so it should be available immediately after sent to the network. Once their limit is reached then they should allow access to the good, confirm the invoice paid, etc. and, just so you know, 0 confirmations are required for any HTV products so click: Download.

CONCLUSION

These are five simple steps to help you make your first Bitcoin purchase in under 30 minutes! You will become more comfortable with the technology the more you engage with the Bitcoin economy. Then when you use those clunky barbarous relics like online banking, debit or credit cards, money orders or checks it will seem like you are carving a letter to someone in stone!


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