Has This Election Season Damaged Trump’s Luxury Niche?

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As the Trump name waffles, demand for his luxury condominiums do, too. However, it’s not clear how much of this is a result of his current reputation, and how much is due to shifts in the luxury market.

Trump has been through a rough political ride. He’s been sloshed with accolades, from racism to xenophobia, misogyny, and the like. The Huffington Post, for instance, routinely ends its articles by reminding readers that, “Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims––1.6 billion members of an entire religion––from entering the U.S.”

This makes few people proud to call Trump’s luxury condominiums their residence.

In the Republican candidate’s hometown of New York, sales fell by nearly 17.1 percent, while 456 residents from Trump Place Apartments on Riverside Drive launched a petition to remove his name from their building.

Redfin revealed that bookings at Trump Hotels caved 59 percent in the first half of 2016.

Business Insider observed that Trump condos that are currently listed for sale are less likely to have the word “Trump” in the listing remarks than were Trump condos that sold in the past five years.

More tellingly, the Trump Hotels group is replacing the Trump name with another for its new line of fancy hotels. From now on, they’ll be called Scion.

Does the challenge come from Trump’s nefarious stories or from changes in the luxury market?

An article on Realtor.com says that the Trump name may have lost its rubbings.

“They’re considered generic, upper-middle-class properties,” says an anonymous real estate expert, who noted that Trump buildings have similar lobbies and features. “It’s like a formula and it works, but… times have changed.”

According to Mia Trudeau, real estate agent of Hilton & Hyland estates, luxury products are becoming increasingly more sophisticated with “services, security, and amenities clearly representing a very important aspect of this type of purchase.”

Joyce Rey of Coldwell Bankers explains, “In our market, the wealthy clients typically search for brand new or pristine, updated estates.” She adds, “Important ingredients are privacy, quality of finishes, prime location, and views. In some cases, a site to build their dream house increases demand for older tear-down properties, which are also sought by the high number of developers constantly searching for projects.”

A recent article on Luxury Brand Experiences published by Luxury Society noted, “Residents want cool, they want fun, and they want experiences.”

Trump apartments supply some of these items, but not all. Luxury agents say they’re dated in comparison to New York’s new crop of service-laden lodgings.

Actually, Trump owns only a percentage of these buildings. Various owners pay him license fees to chisel his name. They’re the losers, as much as he.

Still, whatever your opinion of Donald J. Trump, a President Trump may rub the tarnish from the gold name and attract investors.

For the moment, it seems as though foreigners make up the bulk of his buyers.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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