With the US presidential election looming, it's all change in the White House in a few months time. The Obama family might be looking forward to stepping out of the limelight after eight tough years, but they're bound to miss the luxury living provided by the White House. In terms of prestige, no other piece of luxury real estate in the US comes close.
The iconic property at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is one of the grandest and best-known properties in America. As the presidential election draws ever closer, all eyes are on its whitewashed columns, but it's not just political commentators staring at the gates. Followers of the election all over the world are likely asking the question: exactly how much is the White House worth?
If the elections weren't set to decide the next occupant of the White House, it would undoubtedly be one of the most attractive properties on the US luxury real estate market. So what would a buyer be getting for their money?
The colossal building houses an impressive 132 rooms, with 28 fireplaces and 750 artefacts. All of this is set within 18 acres of stunning grounds, in one the most prestigious areas of Washington DC. That’s certainly worth fighting a presidential election for.
One of the first things realtors look at when valuing luxury real estate is the initial build cost. The White House build costs (from the fees for the White House architect, to the materials and labour) came in at a little over $230,000. You might think that sounds reasonable, until you consider that this was way back in 1792. The same project in today's money is estimated to reach closer to $100 million.
Rental income also dictates a property's value. With so many rooms inside the White House, the winner of the US elections could probably spare a bedroom or two to some high-paying lodgers.
At present, there are 16 White House bedrooms. Serving as a hotel, each of these could bring in around $1,200 a night. Over the course of a year, that's a cool $5 million – a substantial return, even on a nine-figure price tag.
Any piece of luxury real estate has its value tied to similar properties in the country. While there's only one White House, there are a few properties that would fetch similar prices according to luxury living experts. Funnily enough, one of these belongs to one of the candidates in the presidential election – Donald Trump. His flashy Floridian pad is valued at around $100m. And here is another comparison: These days Engel & Völkers is proud to market a luxurious estate in Marbella, Spain at a value of €80m.
A final figure
Taking into account the three major factors of the White House listed above, estimates in real estate news have put a price tag of around $90m on the White House. This also includes a slight swelling, due to the prestige of the property. It is the prize of the US elections, after all. Of course, if you were to include all the property’s furniture and White House arts, you could expect that figure to balloon to as much as $200m.
Engel & Völkers is a leading voice in US luxury real estate. Take a look at our website for a closer look at our well-appointed homes in 32 countries across four continents.