A young real estate investor flipped President Trump’s childhood home in Queens. His name is Michael Davis, and he purchased the home through an auction for $1.39 million this past December, just one month after the election and three months after Trump expressed interest in buying it.
This last week of March, Davis quickly let go of the property and sold it to another investor for $2.14 million, a just over 50 percent profit.
The Tudor-style home, located at 85-15 Wareham Place in Jamaica Estates, is listed as the home address on the birth certificate of the president. The President’s father built the five-bedroom house in 1940 and the family lived there for only four years. Then the family moved to another home built nearby.
It’s not clear why Davis sold the property less than four months after having purchased it. Was it too expensive, and not in a desirable location? The average price for a similar home in the neighborhood is $979,400. The auction, conducted by Paramount Realty, had only a starting bid of $849,000.
It’s not clear because this is no ordinary house. The first thing to bring in mind is that the property was sold at an auction, not a real estate agency. An auction is more exclusive; it was treated like a piece of very expensive art.
Now, because it is the childhood home of the 45th president of the United States, it is invaluable, it is part of Trump’s legacy, it is, in short, part of history. The house is also infused in mythology, the education and growing of our president when he was just a little boy, a portrait of the now mogul as a young man. When a home becomes myth, it is forever inextricably attached to its history, which is perhaps why there’s an intangible quality to the house, and why it now transcends real estate.
It’s too bad President Trump wanted to buy it. He could have preserved it, because who knows what will be done to it in the future as it changes hands.
Last September, when then-candidate Trump was on “The Tonight Show,” Jimmy Fallon showed him a photo of the home.
Trump said, in return, “That’s it, that’s where I was born … I want to buy it, I want to buy it.”
Sometimes even the leader of the free world and the most powerful real estate mogul don’t get second chances. It’s too bad, and a tad sad. The missed chance, the failed opportunity to buy your own history back, and suddenly there you are, for the first time, outside looking in, being shown a picture of your first home on national television, saying you’ll do it, you want to buy it. But it’s raining and cold outside, you are standing outside, and inside there’s the smell of cooking, your small clothing, an image of your father bustling about, always doing something with his hands, and you wonder, will I ever be able to keep my memories of my childhood intact?