From the November issue: America’s exhaustive and exhausting two-year presidential cycle is drawing to a close, which means that the White House will soon have new — or, at least, newly returned — residents. Spread across 18 acres, the mansion is 55,000 square feet, with 132 rooms, including three kitchens and 35 bathrooms. Still, the White House is considered modest compared to the official residences of some other heads of state. The property was built for one purpose only — as a symbol of American political stability. It has never been bought of sold.
“In view of the frantic nature of many election campaigns, it is amazing that there has never been an interruption in the lawful exchange of residents at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue,” writes the White House Historical Association on its website. Of course, that hasn’t stopped people from speculating on its market value. Zillow estimated the value of the property at $393 million. That, of course, includes a large premium for its historical significance. [more]