Thursday, June 05, 2008


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Now I get it. From this satellite view, it becomes apparent that Rezko didn't buy an adjoining lot to Obama. He just paid for part of the land that is really Obama's yard. Look at the hedge, it is continuous across both properties.

That is Obama's house in the center of the frame, and Rezko's "lot" just below it. A "lot" too small to build on. So it will always be Obama's private park-like buffer to Hyde Park Boulevard.


steveegg said...

Check your e-mail at your earliest convenience.

Headless Blogger said...

It won't be until evening. My email account is blocked at work.

steveegg said...

Completing (more or less) the recap/rephrasing of that e-mail started on the previous thread...

While the previous owner treated those three (yes, 3; that building behind the Obama garage is on a separate outlot also listed as 5046 S. Greenwood) parcels as one property, in the eyes of the city, they aren't technically the same property.

Originally, both the main 5046 S. Greenwood and the vacant 5050 S. Greenwood parcels were approximately 10,000 square feet, typical of that block. The purchase of the strip, which made the southern lot line of the combined parcels of 5046 S. Greenwood uneven, made the main 5046 parcel about 12,500 square feet and made the 5050 parcel 8,002 square feet (that numbe sticks out like a sore thumb).

Call this pure speculation on my part, but I believe the plan between the Obamas and Rezkos was for Rezko to buy the vacant land for Obama because he didn't quite have enough cash for the entire set of properties, and for Obama to purchase it piece by piece as the Mad US Senate Money rolled in and eventually combine it into a single parcel. At the least, that's rather unseemly, and for a Wisconsin politician, it would be grounds for a criminal investigation and possible prosecution.

Headless Blogger said...

Steve - We are thinking along the same lines. Michelle decided this was the home she wanted, with the garden lot, so Barack tapped his old associate on the shoulder to find a way to make the deal.

Your lot size information differs from what was in the recent papers - I think you have a better source. I also found this in the Trib:

"Five years later, bolstered by payments for his best-selling autobiography and advances for future books, Obama and his wife, Michelle, went house hunting. They were drawn to a 96- year-old South Side home with four fireplaces, glassdoor bookcases fashioned from Honduran mahogany and a wine cellar.

"The house and the adjoining yard had been owned as a single property, but the owners were listing them separately and asking $1.95 million for the house and $625,000 for the landscaped side lot.

"Obama disclosed Friday that someone else already had an option to buy the garden lot. But he said Rezko took over that option after Rezko learned Obama was bidding for the house. Obama said he knew next to nothing about those transactions and does not recall when he learned that Rezko was interested in buying the side lot- or even how Rezko learned it was for sale."

I have to wonder what did Rezko pay the option holder to assume the purchase option on the lot?

I love this part, the lot is reduced by a couple thousand square feet, but its value goes up $300K. All during a huge national real estate crisis.

"To put some space between his house and the proposed fence, Obama then asked Rezko to sell a 10-foot-wide strip. Obama's appraiser estimated the portion at $40,500. But Obama paid the Rezkos $104,500, or a sixth of their original $625,000 purchase price, because he was acquiring a sixth of the land.

"Rezko later sold the rest of the lot to one of his former attorneys, who now has it listed for more than $900,000. "It appears," Obama said, "a sale is about to be consummated.""

Read the whole thing:,0,2968927.story

steveegg said...

Thanks again for the research.