Uncle Sam, real estate baron

Released: 
December 11, 2012

The federal government owns and leases more than 3 billion square feet of building space and 900,000 structures. Its not all put to good use.

Uncle Sam could be considered a real estate baron. The federal government owns and leases more than 3 billion square feet of building space and 900,000 structures. Not every property, however, is a model of efficiency.

A federal review in 2009, for example, found more than 45,000 underutilized buildings including completely vacant properties that cost the government $1.66 billion to operate that year.

The Obama administration is moving to sell off some of the surplus, predicting sales could bring in $15 billion over three years. If youd like to see whats currently up for auction, check out the General Services Administration website.

Click through our photo gallery for more on US real estate holdings. See What Do Others Say for more views. Then add to the discussion below. Is the sell-off a good idea? How might the U.S. better profit from what it keeps