The real reason Trump can’t live at Mar-a-Lago after his presidency ends

In the 2020 presidential election, President-elect Joe Biden received more than the 270 electoral college votes required to secure the presidency. Though Biden has essentially been declared the winner, the decision hasn’t been officially certified. On Dec. 8, 2020, electoral colleges convene to vote on what is called the “safe harbor” deadline. While states aren’t legally required to certify their results by this date, if they do, they can avoid Congress getting involved and resolving a potential dispute over which candidate won a particular state’s electoral college votes.

Dec. 14, 2020, is the official day in which state electors officially cast their votes for president and vice president. Then on Jan. 6, 2021, at 1 p.m. ET, the vote count is finalized and certified. Barring something completely unexpected happening between now and the vote certification day, President-elect Biden will be named the 46th sitting president of the United States. 

Unless current President Donald Trump decides not to leave the White House on Jan. 20, 2021, when President-elect Biden is sworn in as president, he will have to find another place to live. Most assume that President Trump will live at his Florida residence, Mar-a-Lago. There is just one big glitch in those plans to prevent that from happening. Keep reading to find out more.

Unfortunately for Donald Trump, the Mar-a-Lago resort can't be used as a primary residence

Once President Donald Trump has officially moved out of the White House, he will most likely head to his favorite residence, Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla. The 126-room, 62,500-square-foot mansion and 17.5-acre resort and golf club, which he has dubbed the “winter White House,” has been the go-to vacation spot for Trump during his presidency. Last year, per The New York Times, Trump changed his permanent residency from New York to Florida, listing the Mar-a-Lago Club as his and Melania Trump’s permanent residence. Reportedly, one of the main reasons he moved to Florida was for the tax benefits.

While Trump can stay at the resort post-election, he cannot permanently live there, though. In 1993, when he was granted permission by the town of Palm Beach to turn the mansion into a members’ club, Trump signed an agreement with the Palm Beach town council not to use it as a private residence, according to Yahoo! News. The agreement, per The Washington Post, states that he can spend a maximum of 21 days there a year and no more than seven days at a time.

Trump has already violated that 21-day limit, with NBC News reporting that he has spent 133 days at Mar-a-Lago while president, as of October 2019. So if Trump wants to live permanently at Mar-a-Lago, he has to legally change the property type. Otherwise, he’ll have to find a new home — he does have plenty to choose from, though.

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