The real losers in the property market downturn!

The lives of the rich and famous property investorsIf you thought the fall in your house price was overdone and excessive, check out the list of the world’s most expensive homes below and you will see what a 10% or 20% markdown in the property market really means. We are talking about homes valued earlier this year in excess of $50 million and as high as $136 million some of which are not actually inhabited at the moment.

The most expensive homes in the world

While you could argue that anyone who could afford a home in the million-dollar bracket can afford to take a loss in the short term many of these homeowners have substantial other property and business investments which we have suffered terribly over the last few months.

Updown Court, Windlesham, England

Value $139 million

How unique for a property in England to come in at number one in the list of the world’s most expensive homes but when you realise exactly what Updown Court has to offer you realise exactly why it is valued at $139 million. The property has 103 rooms, 5 swimming pools as well as its own leisure complex which includes a bowling alley, squash court and the rich and famous plaything which is a 50 seat cinema. For that extra touch of class, the marble driveway to Uptown Court is actually heated.

It is estimated that Updown Court costs in the region of $360,000 a month just to maintain the buildings, the grounds and the gardens. However neighbours for this massive development include Elton John, Duchess of York and the ultimate neighbour i.e. the Queen at Windsor Castle. For that kind of money you would expect to be living next to this class of neighbour!

Starwood Estate, Aspen, Colorado

Value $135 million

When we say that Starwood Estate was once owned by Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdul Aziz you may well start to get a feel for the type of investor who may be interested in such a property. The home itself is set in the beautiful countryside of Aspen, Colorado and covers a full 95 acres in total. The mansion itself is 56,000 ft.² with 15 bedrooms and an amazing 16 bathrooms together with all the luxuries and over the top riches you would expect from a home valued at $135 million.

Maison de L’Amitie, Palm Beach, Florida

Value $125 million

When we say that Maison de L’Amitie is owned by the infamous Donald Trump this is only the beginning of what will turn out to be a long and no doubt controversial story about the property. Mr Trump acquired the property back in 2004 from Abram Gosman the now bankrupt health care entrepreneur for $41 million. The property is situated in Palm Beach, Florida and is currently being refurbished by Donald Trump who has great plans for the property.

Setting aside the massive number of bedrooms and bathrooms the new look Maison de L’Amitie will also have its own ballroom, Olympic size swimming pool and is set on over 475 feet of the world’s most expensive sea front.  Since he acquired the property in 2004 Donald Trump has harboured an ambition to grab the title of the world’s most expensive property investment – something which he may well do with Maison de L’Amitie when the property is finally sold.

Waterfront Estate, Bosphorus, Istanbul

Value $100 million

While many may not have expected a property from Istanbul, Turkey to be in the world’s top 5 most expensive properties it is even more astounding when you consider that this 30,000 ft.² mansion is located on land which is less than one acre. The main reason for the enormous value placed on the property, aside from the fact it is located on the shore, is the mass of gilded extras, crystal chandeliers and just about every other luxury you could ever hope to see in your lifetime.

Toprak Mansion, London, England

Value $92 million

Toprak Mansion was sold earlier this year for £50 million taking the UK record for the most expensive new build in the country. The mansion itself has seven bedrooms, four kitchens, two grand staircases, a glass left, swimming pool and a two acre garden. While the buyer of the property has remained on the sidelines it has been confirmed that they plan to spend a staggering £30 million adding a beauty salon, spa, helipad, cinema and squash court. To say that this is at the extreme end of luxury is an understatement to say the least.

Property market for luxury homes

These are the kind of homes were literally money means very little and those who own the properties are probably more interested in the kudos associated with the address and the fact the property is in the top five around the world. However, many of these owners are business people in their own rights (although some may have acquired their wealth through inheritance) and will recently have suffered the double whammy of seeing their property values smashed and probable losses on stock markets and other business investments.

These are the kind of properties where mortgages are not required, it would cost more to run the property than many homes in the UK are worth and no expense is spared.

Who would actually acquire these properties in the current market?

If these homes were put up for sale in the current property market there are very few people who would actually be in a position to even cover the deposit never mind the value of the property. Historically the Russian elite have been very interested in acquiring properties, particularly in London where they have been treat favourably by the government, but even this element of the super rich have suffered of late.

Quite how you would be able to use the massive array of rooms and facilities in these homes is a mystery as it would literally take days to sample every nook and cranny of these outstanding properties. In the world of the rich and famous many of these homes are mere chickenfeed when compared to the wealth of the owners.

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