Living under the shadow of having President Trump as an occasional neighbor–and as a sign on the front of your building–doesn’t do much for condo property values in midtown Manhattan, if commercial leasing and residential sales at Trump Tower are any indication. CityRealty reports that vacancies persist in the commercial podium of 721 Fifth Avenue, and residential condo sales in the mixed-use tower have yet to recover from recent stagnation: Almost one half of the units up for sale have cut their initial asking prices, and all but two of the 11 condos whose sales closed this year have sold at an often-considerable–more than 10 percent–discount.
An online petition to rename a stretch of Fifth Avenue in front of Trump Tower after former President Barack Obama has taken off in the last week, garnering over 275,000 signatures as of Thursday morning. The appeal, written by Elizabeth Rowin from Los Angeles, asks city officials to change the name of Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th Avenues to “President Barack H. Obama Avenue.”
Another Manhattan property forfeited by Paul Manafort has hit the market. The federal government is selling the Trump Tower condo once owned by the former Donald Trump campaign manager for $3.6 million, the New York Post reported. Earlier this month, the feds put Manafort’s Soho apartment at 29 Howard Street on the market for $3.663 million.
Over 3,800 people have signed a petition to rename the block in front of Trump Tower after President Barack Obama. Without specifically mentioning the Midtown building developed by President Donald Trump, the MoveOn.org appeal requests the City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio rename the part of Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th Street “President Barack H. Obama Avenue.”
A one-bedroom on the 57th floor of Trump Tower closed earlier this month for $1.825 million, marking just the second sale of 2018 at the Midtown building, as Mansion Global first reported. Comparatively, there were seven sales in 2017 and eight in 2016 at the building, developed by President Donald Trump. While the sales slump at Trump Tower reflects a broader decline in sales at luxury properties across Manhattan, politics surrounding the building may also be playing a role.
Photo of Trump via Michael Vadon on Flickr
You don’t need a security clearance to live below the President, but it might still be a challenge for whomever wants to buy the condo right below Donald Trump‘s Midtown residence. The Post reports that the duplex unit on the 64th and 65th floors of Trump Tower has just hit the market for $24.5 million and sources are saying it “directly adjoins” his bedroom. So how can the administration legally control the buyer? By convincing the condo Board to exercise a board waiver and buy the apartment themselves, according to the Post. And this may just work; a recent Business Insider investigation into a mysterious $1.5 million apartment Melania bought in the building shows that this was the only unit the Board had ever bought.
New York City has said no to a $48,000 break President Trump has been receiving on the annual tax bill for his Trump Tower condo after inquiries by the Daily News into his eligibility. The News reports that the city says the president was set to get $48,834.62 knocked off his condo taxes for the tax year beginning July 1 via the city’s condominium abatement, which is available for condo and co-op owners on their primary residence. Tax rules state that only “the dwelling unit in which the owner of the dwelling unit actually resides and maintains a permanent and continuous physical presence” is eligible for the savings, and Trump hasn’t kept a “permanent and continuous physical presence” in the Midtown pad since he moved to the White House in January of 2017.
Following back-to-back fatal fires in 1998 at two New York City buildings that lacked working sprinklers, public officials advocated for new regulations requiring sprinklers in all buildings. Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s administration that year pushed for legislation to address the lack of sprinklers in high-rise towers. But real estate developers, including President Donald Trump, fought against the proposals, citing the high expense of retrofitting existing buildings with them, as the Washington Post reported.
After fierce lobbying from developers, including Trump who personally called a dozen council members, the city enacted a law in 1999 that would require sprinklers in new construction but not existing buildings, exempting the president’s Trump Tower. On Saturday, a fire ripped through a 50th-floor apartment at Trump Tower, killing a 67-year-old art dealer. Sprinklers were never installed at the Fifth Avenue property.
Photo of Trump Tower via Krystal T’s Flickr
Sales prices at the tony Midtown condo building at 721 Fifth Avenue have dropped sharply since Donald Trump began his presidential campaign, according to the Wall Street Journal. The median sale price and average price per square foot are down since 2015 and are now reaching the lows experienced during the last financial crisis. Brokers aren’t exactly sure whether the “Trump effect” has caused the slump–including issues specific to the tower such as heightened security, protests, and a general antipathy toward all things Trump–or it’s part of an overall softening of the luxury condo market.
Photo of Trump Tower courtesy of Krystal T’s Flickr
While this week marks just the third time President Donald Trump has visited New York City since his January inauguration, property taxes he filed after the election designate Trump Tower as his primary residence. As the Real Deal reported, Trump will save $45,000 by calling his penthouse his main home, utilizing a tax credit known as the “coop condo abatement.” The credit can be used by owner-occupied co-ops and condos and takes off 28.1 percent of property taxes for the unit. Because of the tax abatement, the president has saved a little under $200,000 on his taxes over the last five years.