If American billionaires aren't going to pony up for America's best real estate, by God the Russian oligarchs will. Mansions on sale, particularly in playboy hotspots like New York, Miami, and LA, are attracting Russian buyers according to brokers and the Bloomberg news outlets who cover them. Here, a cheat sheet on Russians in New York:
· New York is near the bottom of a list "measuring luxury real estate price appreciation in 15 cities that attract the world’s global elite," ahead of only Moscow.
· As of March 31, home prices rose a mere 1% in Manhattan compared to, say, 22% in Paris, which translates to real estate cache at a relative bargain.
· Of the 214 newcomers to Forbes billionaire power ranking list this year, 31 are from Russia.
· This March, Russian composer Igor Krutoy made the record books with the purchase of a $48 million condo at the Plaza hotel. He and his wife also bought a little beach house ($12.85 million) in the Hamptons.
· Stribling private brokerage director Kirt Henckels relays a yarn about a potential buyer from Russia "seeking to spend $100 million on a Manhattan home." Hinckels countered: "We don’t have properties that high."
· The most expensive residential unit currently on the market is the $90 million Woolworth Mansion; the Brown Harris Stevens broker who's listing the property admits that it's been a particular point of interest for her Russian clients.
Granted, much of this is circumstantial, anecdotal evidence. Doth one record-breaking condo sale maketh a Russian invasion? Stay tuned.
· Russian Billionaires Buy in U.S. as Mansions Lure Wealth [Bloomberg Business Week]