President Donald Trump should be well ahead of his rivals in donations from real estate executives. They historically give to Republicans by a 2-1 margin and industries favor a candidate who’s one of their own.

Yet Trump lags among people who work in real estate, even though they’ve enjoyed his regulatory rollback. Political tensions with China and the cap on deductions for state and local taxes have hit the lucrative coastal real-estate markets hard.

“There’s a lot of frustration with Trump’s policies,” said Sean Burton, a supporter of Joe Biden and chief executive officer of Cityview in Los Angeles, a real estate investment firm that specializes in urban residential projects. “People in California were very upset about SALT. And there’s been a significant pullback of Chinese capital in real estate over the last few years.”

Trump has received less from individual real estate donors this year than Democrats Biden and Pete Buttigieg. Biden has raised $1.04 million from this group and Buttigieg $964,912 to Trump’s $902,723, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.

Yet in 2012, for instance, Mitt Romney raised $17 million from the industry to incumbent President Barack Obama’s $6.6 million, and George W. Bush got twice as much as both John Kerry in 2004 and Al Gore in 2000.

Trump largely self-financed his primary campaign but then collected $5 million from the real estate industry in the general election.

The real estate sector, which has given more money to Republican candidates than to Democrats in every election since 1994, has lost billions of dollars in sales as political tensions with China accelerated Chinese investors’ pullback from investing in U.S. housing.

The SALT cap also dampened sales of homes in expensive markets like California and New York.

“We conduct a monthly survey of realtors, and they say that the $10,000 limit on state property tax deduction is a disincentive to buy property in California or New York,” said Gay Cororaton, the director of housing and commercial research at the National Association of Realtors.

Perhaps nowhere are these factors more damaging to the industry than in California, where home prices have fallen in some areas after years of sharp price growth. The volume of Chinese property purchases nationally fell 56%, or $13.4 billion, from April 2018 to March 2019 from the same period a year earlier, and more than a third of all such transactions were in California, where the top-polling seven Democratic candidates will debate Thursday.

First « 1 2 3 4 » Next