Trump Takes New Interest in Fresno

February 7, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
The Running Horse development may be dead, but Donald Trump is still taking an interest in the Fresno market.The office is a mortgage lending company. They are open for business and helping to finance a development in Kingsburg.

Anyone who wants to buy these homes could get their financing from Donald Trump. One of his companies, Trump Financial just opened, and is ready to make loans. "We're the preferred lender here at Satterberg estates in Kingsburg," said Jennifer Jones of Trump Financial.

While the home mortgage crisis has some lenders going under, Trump Financial sees an opportunity; Trump's name is a factor. :"I think it has a little bit of weight with it when you say you're with the Trump Institution. Everybody asks if it's with Donald Trump and yes, it's with Donald Trump," said Jones.

While Trump galloped away from Fresno's Running Horse developed Jennifer Jones, who's in real estate finance went to New York and convinced Trump's daughter Ivanka, and his attorney and Executive Vice President Michael Cohen they could make money here.

But Cohen tells Action News not to read too much into the opening of an office in Fresno. Over the phone he told us, "It doesn't really mean anything. The Trump brand is reaching out to many areas. Trump Financial opened 20 offices last year and expects to open 50 more this year," and Cohen emphatically adds, "The opening of Trump Financial in Fresno has no relationship to Running Horse. It's off our radar."

While Donald Trump is not building these houses, it's hoped his name will help sell some of the 50 lots and homes in the Satterberg development. "We're pretty excited about it, with the trump name, it does bring some notoriety," said Real Estate Broker Steve Safarjian.

Trump Financial is in business to make money, and their expansion to Fresno, and other cities while other lenders are hurting may be either an expression of confidence in the real estate market, or a real gamble.


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