Tales from the Trail

Muddy manse

Selling your house? Worried about having to lower the price to get it to move?

How about a $1.275 million price reduction? That’s how much former Fannie Mae CEO Daniel H. Mudd had to cut the asking price on his 11,500 square foot, six bedroom, six full bath (plus three half baths) mansion to find a buyer.  Originally listed for $8.9 million on September 11, the transaction closed on December 11 for $7.625 million.


Don’t worry too much for Mr. Mudd, though. He paid $5.15 million for the place in June 2000, leaving him with a 48 percent return on his investment, excluding any renovation costs. And even though he was booted from Fannie Mae when the government took over the housing giant in September 2008 and reportedly wasn’t paid his multi-million dollar severance package, he’s landed on his feet. New York’s Fortress Investment Group named him CEO in August.


Wondering what you could have bought from the son of the former NBC News anchor Roger Mudd? Here’s the listing agent’s description:


“Completely restored prewar Georgian estate as it should be. Sits on 1+/- acres of meticulous & mature landscaping overlooking Rosedale Park. Residence feat spectacular entertaining spaces which all exit thru French drs to lvl terrace. Luxurious Mstr Ste, 5 addt BRms, 6 full/3 half BAs. .94 Acre lot with pool, gated drive & carriage house w/3car Gar.”


Not mentioned: The place is on the same tony street in DC’s Cleveland Park neighborhood as another former Fannie Mae boss: Franklin Raines.

The First Draft: urgent care

President Obama takes on healthcare reform at a 1:00 p.m. White House forum today, hoping to design an overhaul of a costly and inefficient system he believes is threatening the economy. About 120 participants from industry and government will gather to discuss potential fixes to the $2.5 trillion system. JAPAN

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Brussels, said it was time for NATO to make a new start with Russia after formal ties were suspended when Moscow sent troops into Georgia last summer.

The House is expected to approve a bill that would allow bankruptcy judges to slash mortgage payments for homeowners as a last resort.

Bushes buy a house in tony Dallas neighborhood

WASHINGTON – Moving day is less than seven weeks away for President George W. and Laura Bush and they have finally settled on a house in the upscale Dallas, Texas neighborhood of Preston Hollow.

The neighborhood is about a 2-hour, 20-minute drive from their 1,600-acre (648-hectare) ranch in Crawford, Texas (according to Google Maps) which they also plan to keep.

“The President and Mrs. Bush do not have occupancy of the home, and therefore, no additional details will be provided,” said Sally McDonough, a spokeswoman for the first lady. She declined to say whether the Bushes plan to take advantage of a drop in mortgage rates to buy the new digs.