Bloomberg News

Geithner’s Home Under Contract One Week After Listing

March 22, 2013

Timothy F. Geithner, who finished his term as U.S. Treasury secretary in January, has found a buyer for his house in Bethesda, Maryland, just a week after listing the home for $995,000.

Geithner’s four-bedroom property on Ogden Road is under contract with some contingencies, but isn’t dependent on a buyer selling a current house to close the deal, according to the website of brokerage Redfin Corp. It was listed March 14.

The quick deal is a contrast to Geithner’s attempt to sell his home in New York’s Westchester County in 2009, which ended with him renting the house out. U.S. home demand is rebounding as employment improves and buyers seek to take advantage of low mortgage rates, while inventory is tight. In Bethesda, there’s about a 1.5-month supply of houses listed for sale, compared with a six-month supply in a normal market, according to Mark Butterfield, owner of Re/Max Realty Services in Bethesda.

“We have a shortage of inventory,” said Butterfield, who isn’t involved in Geithner’s home sale. “Multiple offers are very common. Good stuff sells quickly.”

Matthew Maury, the real estate agent for Geithner’s home, with Stuart & Maury Inc., declined to comment. Jenni LeCompte, Geithner’s spokeswoman, also declined to comment.

Geithner bought the home in August 2009 for $950,000, according to public records. Built in 1954, the 2,500-square- foot (232-square-meter) house has hardwood floors, a family room with a “soaring” ceiling, two recreation rooms and a deck that overlooks the backyard on the 10,000-square-foot lot, according to the listing.

Westchester Home

Home prices in 20 cities tracked by the S&P/Case-Shiller index are 0.1 percent below their August 2009 average as of December, the most recent month available. Prices in the Washington (SPCSWDC) metropolitan area are up 5.1 percent over the period, according to the index.

Related story: Strategies for the Spring Housing Scrum

Geithner still owns a home in the Westchester County village of Larchmont that he bought in August 2004 for $1.6 million, according to the Town of Mamaroneck Assessor’s office, which estimated the property’s value at $1.32 million in 2012. He put the house up for rent for $7,500 a month in 2009 when he failed to find a buyer, after being appointed Treasury secretary.

Sales of U.S. previously owned homes increased to an annual pace of 4.98 million last month, the National Association of Realtors reported yesterday. That was the fastest since November 2009, when the government offered tax credits to stimulate the housing market.

To contact the reporter on this story: John Gittelsohn in Los Angeles at johngitt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kara Wetzel at kwetzel@bloomberg.net


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