Brooklyn Heights

Jared Kushner’s company sold 27 Monroe Place to a trust

New owner plans to renovate just-remodeled Brooklyn Heights rowhouse

May 11, 2017 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The company headed until recently by Jared Kushner was the seller of 27 Monroe Place. AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Welcome to the neighborhood.

The new owner of 27 Monroe Place, a landmarked Brooklyn Heights rowhouse that belonged to Jared Kushner’s company, is a trust with wealth-management executive Jillian Barbati as a trustee, city records reveal.

The red-brick 1840s house was sold for $12.9 million, New York Post columnist Jennifer Gould Keil recently reported. That story did not reveal the identity of the buyer — other than to say it is not Matt Damon’s wife, Luciana Barroso, who had been interested in the property.

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Kushner Cos. renovated and turned 27 Monroe Place into a single-family home while Jared Kushner headed the company. He has since stepped aside to serve as senior adviser to his father-in-law, President Trump.

The new owner of the rowhouse is identified in a May 3 city Buildings Department filing as The 27 Monroe Place Trust.   

Barbati, the trustee whose name appears in the filing, is a vice president at AJ Wealth in Lower Manhattan. The firm handles asset management, estate planning, tax planning and other services for its clients.

Public records do not identify the beneficiaries of the trust — in other words, the people who will actually live at 27 Monroe Place. An employee at AJ Wealth told the Brooklyn Eagle that Barbati had no comment about the beneficiaries.  

It’s common practice for celebrities and other high-profile real-estate purchasers to buy homes through trusts.

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For instance, “Girls” star Lena Dunham owns a condo at 30 Henry St. in Brooklyn Heights through a trust, city Finance Department records indicate. Academy Award-nominated actress Michelle Williams owns Victorian Flatbush mansion 1440 Albemarle Road through a trust, Finance Department records show.

Of course, plenty of non-famous people also buy homes through trusts.  

Reportedly the second-priciest house in Brooklyn

But more about 27 Monroe Place.

Though it has been meticulously remodeled by Kushner Cos., the new owner of 27 Monroe Place plans to do additional construction.

The recent Buildings Department filing with Barbati’s name on it describes the job that’s being contemplated as the “renovation of an existing one-family dwelling” including “architectural, plumbing and mechanical work.”

According to a January 2017 Brownstoner.com story, Kushner Cos. transformed the five-story, 25-foot-wide building into a luxurious townhouse with an elevator, central air-conditioning and five bedrooms — all of them suites.

Kushner Cos. purchased 27 Monroe Place from Brooklyn Law School for $7,419,004 in 2014, Finance Department records show. It had been used as a law-school dorm for many years.

The sum that has reportedly just been paid for 27 Monroe Place makes it the priciest house in Brooklyn Heights — beating out the $12.5 million paid in 2012 for 70 Willow St.

“Grand Theft Auto” video-game creator Dan Houser and his wife Krystyna were the buyers of the 1830s Willow Street home, where Truman Capote lived while working on “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and “In Cold Blood.”

The $12.9 million reportedly paid for 27 Monroe Place also makes it the second-priciest house in all of Brooklyn. The biggest-dollar Brooklyn house deal was photographer Jay Maisel’s $15.5 million purchase of Cobble Hill’s 177 Pacific St. in 2015.   

Kushner Cos. and its investment partners own prime Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO properties they bought from the Jehovah’s Witnesses for more than $1 billion — including the religious group’s former headquarters at 25-30 Columbia Heights, which has a red neon sign on it that says “Watchtower.”   


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