Donald Trump's childhood home 'set to sell for 10 times previous asking price'
The owners of Donald Trump's childhood home are hoping to cash in after gambling on the Republican's surprise victory in the election.
Isaac Kestenberg and his estranged wife Claudia decided to take the Queens house off the market last month and wait to see what happened in the election on November 8.
It was a wise move. Having lowered the asking price from $1.65 million (€1.51) in June to $1.2 million (€1.1m) in October, the divorcing couple can now expect to sell it for as much as 10 times that amount when it goes to auction next month.
“It was a little bit of a risk, but it worked out,” Mr Haghani told the New York Post. “We waited and it turned out to be the right thing to do. Now that it is the childhood home of the president-elect, it has increased value.”
The couple purchased the five-bedroom Jamaica Estates home in 2008 for just $782,500. Experts believe someone wanting to own a bit of presidential history could shell out as much as $10 million for it, the newspaper reported.
"Now that he’s [president-elect], it’s worth a lot more," superbroker Dolly Lenz told the paper. "It’s a huge deal. And there are lots of wealthy people who buy trophy homes as one-offs.
"Think of all the billionaires who could turn this into a museum. That’s the highest and best use for this house. It’s an amazing opportunity for somebody."
The 1940 Tudor style home was built by Fred Trump, the president-elect's real estate investor father, who married Mary Anne Macleod from the isle of Lewis in the Hebrides. The family then moved to a mansion nearby, also built by his father, when Donald was four years old.
The house boasts five bedrooms, four bathrooms, an enclosed rear porch and a detached, two-car garage. Today, the 3,600-square-foot house also features a finished basement with a second kitchen.
The house is located in Queens' Jamaica Estates section, an upper middle class enclave of one-family Tudor, Victorian and Colonial style homes. It was developed at the turn of the 20th century as an affluent community with hilly and winding streets with names like Aberdeen and Avon that boasted easy access to midtown Manhattan.
In Mr Trump's boyhood days, the area was nearly all-white but today it's a community that includes "all backgrounds and ethnicities," Mr Haghani said.
The billionaire president-elect once recalled in an interview that "parts of Queens were rough" but Jamaica Estates offered "an oasis."
Mr Kestenberg told AP he only learned several weeks after buying the house that the Trumps had occupied it for a time. When the house went on the market in the summer, Mr Trump "did not come over to look at it," he quipped.