The listing for Rush Limbaugh's Fifth Avenue condo dropped to $12.95 million from $13.95 million. Limbaugh said he wanted to get out of New York City because of proposed income tax increases. Taxes on this home are, according to Corcoran's listing, $6,000 a month.
With Rush's place taking a while to sell and needing a price drop, is this common for higher-end properties in Manhattan?
Condos have an added benefit: Sellers don't have to provide full disclosure of their finances.
But the fact remains that if real estate is having a tough time at lower price points, higher-end properties have a particular issue. "There is a smaller pool of buyers," Seigel notes. "The higher-end market has fewer people than say from $1 million to $2.5 million. Unless someone has a real need to buy an apartment, it can be hard to get a buyer, so properties tend to stay on the market longer."
Victoria Matus, senior VP at Halstead Property in Manhattan, says the price is the thing. "If something is priced well, it's selling promptly. Six months ago it was hotter on the lower end of the market, say below $2 million. Now the higher end of the market is moving quickly, again, so long as it's priced well."
A sampling of the area on AOL Real Estate nets apartments in a similar price range, with fewer bedrooms and bathrooms and less space -- although they didn't look like they needed updating.
And Rush never slept in those homes.
One smart way to show the market that a seller is serious is to drop the price, and Limbaugh did just that. According to Siegel, "A seller who is sincere about selling -- that reduces -- shows they are looking to sell. The market is very psychological now. He reduces his price to tell the market he is a motivated seller.
"It's good to come on at a high price because you never know who is out there, and you reduce the price to show you are serious."
Who knows, maybe the million-dollar price drop will be the ticket? Convicted swindler Bernie Madoff's New York apartment sold for a million less than the original asking price.
No matter what your price point, real estate is, as Siegel puts it, "Like a game. It's a game of wait and watch, and strategy. People aren't rushing."
Not even for Rush, apparently.