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Sunday, Feb 28, 2021

Prices at Trump's NYC buildings have plummeted in the latest sign that his name is 'radioactive'

Prices at Trump's NYC buildings have plummeted in the latest sign that his name is 'radioactive'

Properties in Trump Tower and other Trump-branded Manhattan buildings have lost a staggering 51% of their value since he won the 2016 election.

After a tumultuous one-term presidency, a violent insurrection by supporters, and a retirement to Florida, the Trump name has attracted some negative connotations. And his real-estate holdings are feeling the heat: According to Curbed's analysis of a report from real-estate data firm UrbanDigs, Trump-branded Manhattan properties have lost half their value since Trump first took office.

UrbanDigs — which looked at the seven luxury buildings in Manhattan that still bear the Trump moniker, and three that used to — found that even properties that formerly had Trump in their names lost 17% of their value since 2016. By comparison, the overall price per square foot decline in Manhattan over the same period was just 9%.

In 2016, the average price per square foot in seven NYC properties run by his real-estate behemoth, the Trump Organization, was $3,346, according to the report. In 2017, following Trump's election and inauguration, that figure sunk to $1,903; by 2020, it was at $1,619. That's a drop of 51% from its 2016 price.

The average price per square foot for Manhattan properties was $1,995 in 2016, dipping to $1,815 in 2020 — a mere 9% decrease, Curbed notes.

Trump Tower, at 721-725 Fifth Ave., is a gilded condos-and-commercial building that includes Trump's own offices and ornate triplex penthouse. His other residential buildings in New York City include Trump International Hotel & Tower on Columbus Circle, Trump Parc and Trump Parc East on Central Park South, the Trump Park Avenue at 502 Park Ave. and Trump Palace at 200 East 69th St. on the Upper East Side, and Trump World Tower at 327 East 47th St. near the United Nations.

The UrbanDigs report also looked at three buildings that used to bear Trump's name along the Upper West Side's Riverside Boulevard, which faces the Hudson River.

The Capitol riot strained Trump's businesses further


A broker with Brown Harris Stevens and a former Trump Tower resident, Mark Cohen, was marketing three adjacent 41st-floor units in Trump Tower during the 2020 election.

The owner decided to temporarily take those units, which had a combined price tag of $9.49 million, off the market. The owner still wanted to sell the apartments, Cohen said, but wanted to wait out all of the news and attention surrounding Trump.

"My seller is not a desperate seller," Cohen said. "So we didn't want to encourage people who might come in with lowball offers."

That was before the insurrection.

UrbanDigs looked at the most recent data available for its report, which is the 2020 value of Trump's properties. That is a period during which Trump ultimately lost the election and then repeatedly questioned the legitimacy of President Biden's victory.

As Insider reported after the election, the prices in Trump buildings did falter, but residents and realtors were optimistic about the building's future.

However, the Trump name has been dragged through the mud even more in 2021, after a violent insurrection on the Capitol by Trump supporters left five dead and seemed to throw the peaceful transfer of power into question. Trump became the first president to be impeached twice.

Groups began to cut ties with the Trump Organization, including the Girl Scouts and the city of New York. Apartment owners at the Upper East Side's Trump Palace reportedly met to discuss removing Trump's name from the building, Bloomberg reported.

Cohen said that, in the weeks before the insurrection, he had fielded some phone inquiries from prospective buyers about the Trump apartments he was representing — but it felt like they were searching for deals.

"From a practical and business standpoint, I think it was just a smart decision to say, 'Let's wait while all the noise kind of surrounding the building and the brand slows down a bit,'" Cohen said. "And then we can think about what our options are probably in a couple months time or maybe longer."

Cohen said that many of the Trump-branded properties happen to be "really nice buildings." He still thinks that, once more time has passed since the insurrection, Trump Tower pricing will rise.

But even if buyers can score a luxury pad for a discounted price, the current situation makes Trump buildings too taboo.

"If I were choosing to market a new project, the Trump name is probably pretty radioactive right now," Cohen said.

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