WASHINGTON - Former U.S. president Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, are putting down roots in Washington, at least for awhile, a short distance from the White House.
Since he left office in January, the couple has been renting a Tudor-style mansion in the upscale Kalorama neighborhood of the U.S. capital, long a home to diplomats, lobbyists and politicians.
Now, with the Obamas' younger daughter, Sasha, still attending a private high school in Washington for two more years, the Obamas have bought the eight-bedroom home for $8.1 million. The house had previously been owned by Joe Lockhart, once the press secretary for former president Bill Clinton and now the top communications official for the National Football League.
Prominent figures in Washington's new power structure are among the Obamas' neighbors: President Donald Trump's daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, both White House advisers, moved to Kalorama when they left their New York home earlier this year, and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also lives nearby.
An Obama spokesman said, "Given that President and Mrs. Obama will be in Washington for at least another two-and-a-half years, it made sense for them to buy a home rather than continuing to rent property."
The Obamas also own a home in Chicago, the third biggest U.S. city and Obama's political base before he won two four-year terms in the White House.