Increase in private sales of luxury mansions, art, and cars

The trend of “quiet wealth” among the rich is on the rise, with high-net-worth individuals turning to private purchases of mansions, art, and classic cars to avoid unwanted attention. Auction companies and luxury real estate brokers are seeing an increase in private sales and off-market listings as the wealthy seek discretion and privacy in their transactions.

In the art world, public auction sales are declining while private sales are on the rise. Last year, private sales at Sotheby’s and Christie’s totaled $2.4 billion, with a 4% and 5% increase respectively. The shift towards private sales is driven by social media, technology, and the desire to avoid public scrutiny.

Similarly, classic cars are experiencing a shift towards private sales, particularly with expensive and rare models. RM Sotheby’s private sales division has seen a significant increase in sales over the past four years, with private sales now accounting for nearly a third of revenue. Discreet transactions between buyers and sellers are becoming increasingly popular in the classic car market.

In real estate, off-market sales are becoming more common in top luxury markets such as Manhattan, Malibu, Aspen, the Hamptons, and Palm Beach. Properties sold off-market, also known as “whisper” or “pocket” listings, are shopped around quietly among a select group of brokers and buyers. The appeal of off-market deals lies in the privacy and exclusivity they offer to both buyers and sellers.

While some argue that sellers going private may not get the highest price for their properties, the demand for discretion and privacy among the wealthy continues to drive the trend. The need for skilled and connected real estate professionals is more crucial than ever in facilitating off-market transactions and ensuring a seamless process for both parties.

Overall, the rise in private sales across various markets reflects a growing preference for discretion and exclusivity among the wealthy. As technology continues to make information more accessible, the desire for privacy in high-value transactions is likely to drive the trend of “quiet wealth” in the future.

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