Money Talks

1220556118Every Thursday, Francis Storrs will take an inside look at how the rich and famous got that way. This week: Tom Brady proves as good in the real estate market as he does in the pocket.

It should be etched into the wall of some hall of fame: Professional athletes rarely make good real estate investors.

I recently wrote about Manny Ramirez’s aborted 2005 effort to sell his $6.9 million penthouse at the Ritz, and speculated that he might not exactly cash in this time around either. Ray Allen, meanwhile, just slashed the price of his Washington estate from $6 million to $5.2 million. But when it comes to Tom Brady, now that’s a different story.

Brady began amassing his considerable real estate portfolio in 2004, with the $4.1-million purchase of a 3,422 square foot condo on Comm. Ave. Then, in May 2006, he spent $6.2 million on a Beacon Street brownstone that he began developing into four condominiums. By Christmas, he completed his real-estate trifecta with his $14 million purchase of a 3-bedroom in Manhattan’s Time Warner Center. The views of Central Park are said to be stunning.

Add it up: Two years, more than $24 million in property investments—that’s how you roll in the big leagues.

$24 million is also the kind of money that would make even the most seasoned developer shudder. Brady, though, is just as cool in the market as he is in the pocket.

This year, all those investments really began paying off. With the help of consigliere Will McDonough, Brady sold two floors of his Beacon Street property just after New Year’s. Those sales grossed him $4.4 million. Brady was initially looking for more, but he was dealing with a particularly experienced buyer.

The company behind the purchase is controlled by a relative of Andronico Luksic, the late copper magnate whose $4.2 billion estate made him Chile’s richest man. I assume the Luksic family drives a hard bargain.

Still, the very next day, Brady sold his Comm. Ave. condo for roughly a million more than he paid. Then, a little over a week ago, he finalized the $3.6 million sale of a third unit on Beacon (this one also to the Luksic company). That brings him out nearly $2 million ahead on that one building—not counting whatever he sunk into renovations—and he could bank on several million more if he decided to sell the penthouse he’s living in now.

Brady hasn’t wasted any time rebuilding his holdings. He just bought three acres on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s street in Brentwood, California for more than $11 million (mansion forthcoming).

Of course, there’s still that Manhattan condo to deal with. Brady briefly tried selling it last year for $16.5 million, but took it off the market when he didn’t get the price he was looking for. The setback didn’t leave him shaken. He put the condo back on the block in July, and he’s actually raised the price by nearly two million dollars.

The guy really is cool under pressure.