A little over two weeks ago we posted an article about the most expensive homes that have ever sold in the United States. Within that article there was a tiny debate over whether or not you could even consider the #1 home a private residence. Technically speaking, that #1 home, a $132 million property in Colorado, was a fully functioning commercial ranch that also happened to have a luxurious private residence smack dab in the middle. If you agree with that logic then you would consider the #2 home, a $120 million beachfront estate in Greenwich, the most expensive home ever sold in the US. Well, the debate doesn't matter anymore because a hedge fund manager just topped both records by purchasing an 18 acre East Hampton estate for $147 million.
The buyer is a hedge fund manager named Barry Rosenstein. Rosenstein is the founder of Jana Partners which as of 2012 controlled an estimated $4.5 billion in assets. Rosenstein took home $140 million in salary and bonuses in 2012 and $120 million for 2013. Considering the average American makes $51,000 a year, I guess this is sort of like the average person buying a house for around $60,000. Except, not really.
Barry's new home is located at 60 Further Lane in East Hampton. It is an 18 acre beach front property that is decorated with lavish gardens. Rosenstein purchased the property from the estate of fellow investment titan Christopher H. Browne who was one of the founders of the firm Tweedy, Browne Company. Browne actually died in 2009 and left the home to his partner, Andrew Gordon. Gordon, who also designed the main residence, fought with Browne's relatives for years over the rights to the property. Gordon and Browne's heirs eventually reached an agreement that allowed him to stay in the house for the rest of his life, after which point it would revert back to the Browne family.
Andrew Gordon passed away last fall and the family immediately began seeking potential buyers. When they finally reached a deal with Barry Rosenstein, they were able to complete the transaction privately without brokers. This allowed the sellers to save approximately $6 million in commission expenses. Consequently, several East Hampton real estate agents have been placed on a temporary suicide watch. Kidding. Sort of.