Charlie Buttrey

April 6, 2021

This piece in the New York Times (“On the Upper East Side, Two Grand Mansions Sell at Deep Discounts”) caught my eye. Heck, I’m always on the look-out for a bargain.

Sadly, I don’t think I’ll be able to swing it.

It turns out that the Times was reporting on two recent sales. One was a 28,000 square foot mansion with 10 bedrooms and 15 bathrooms (who needs 15 bathrooms in a home with 10 bedrooms?) previously owned by one Jeffrey Epstein. It was listed for $88 million in July of 2020 shortly after Epstein killed himself. It sold for $51 million. That is, I suppose, technically, a deep discount.

The other home had been owned by Vincent Viola, the billionaire owner of the Florida Panthers hockey team and a nominee for Army secretary during the Trump administration. In 2013, the asking price had been as much as $113 million; its most recent listing price was $79 million. It closed for a mere $59 million.

The average commission for a realtor in New York is 5-6 percent. Nice work if you can get it.

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