Mortgage Rates Fall to Low Levels
Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages fell this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.73 percent, down 2 basis points from last week.
The 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell to 3.67 percent on Friday before rising to the current rate Tuesday.
“Mortgage rates fell last week to their lowest levels since early May after the Fed deferred its first rate hike yet again,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “We expect rates to be mostly stable this week now that the uncertainty about the Fed’s decision has subsided.”
Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 2.89 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.71 percent.
Celebrity Real Estate: Sela Ward, Kathleen Turner, Richard Gere
By Laura Vecsey
Sela Ward Trading Paradise
“CSI: NY” star Sela Ward is about to make the Big Apple switch. That means parting with the grand Bel-Air estate she and her husband have owned since 2003. The 8-acre property has been listed for $39.995 million, which means the veteran star of the small screen will definitely be able to handle NYC real estate prices – sizzling as they are.
The 14,000-square-foot gated estate features a main house with 5 bedrooms, plus a guest house with an additional 2 bedrooms. Their property also features a theater, library, a greenhouse and plenty of the great California outdoors, including a vineyard and other fruit trees.
Kathleen Turner Sells Trump Place Condo
“Body Heat” star-turned-NYC-resident and stage actress Kathleen Turner is allegedly moving to lower Manhattan. To pave the way, Turner has just sold her Lincoln Square condo for $3.8 million. It was located in one of the first towers Trump brought to the Manhattan real estate market.
Turner, who will star off-Broadway starting Sept. 26 in a new play she is also producing, bought the 200 Riverside Boulevard abode in 2003, when she was married to New York real estate kingpin Jay Weiss.
After battling rheumatoid arthritis and concurring alcohol abuse, the stage actress is ready for her new close-up in the play “Will You Still Love Me If …” Turner will play the mother of a lesbian who is questioning her gender identity, as well as direct the production.
Richard Gere Cuts Price on Home
Richard Gere has dropped the price of his Sag Harbor estate to $47.5 million. “Strongheart Manor” was originally listed for $65 million in 2013, and then offered at $56 million before this latest cut.
The 6.3-acre property includes a shingled main house – impeccably detailed, plus two guest houses, a 60-foot swimming pool and outdoor basketball court. The estate sits on 300 feet along Peconic Bay.
Celebrity Real Estate: Norah Jones, Julianne Moore, Melanie Griffith, Antonio Banderas
By Laura Vecsey
Singer Nabs Historic Carriage House
Norah Jones has scored a new Brooklyn, NY home and a place to display her nine Grammy awards. The Texas-raised crooner and daughter of sitar legend Ravi Shankar is the proud owner of a Cobble Hill carriage house that was featured in the movie “Eat, Pray, Love.”
Built in 1840, the old firehouse has a ton of architectural charm, wide plank floors and plenty of space for Jones and her partner, jazz bassist and producer Alexander Lee, to raise their 1-year-old son. A long-time New York City resident, word is that Jones is aiming to remodel the two-family property into a single-family dwelling, complete with garden house.
Julianne Moore Selling Bungalow
Oscar-winning actress Julianne Moore has listed her perfectly low-key Montauk bungalow for sale. The price is $3.495 million for the primly-located home on the East End of Long Island.
The home is 1,000 square feet with 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. What makes the place special, however, is the setting. Sitting on about three-quarters of an acre, the landscaped property overlooks a pond and sports a very inviting in-ground swimming pool.
Griffith, Banderas Renting Aspen Home
The end of the marriage between Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas prompted the former Hollywood power couple to divest their real estate holdings. With the divorce finalized this summer, the couple sold their $15.95 million Los Angeles villa in June. However, they’ve had less luck finding a buyer for their $8.9 million Aspen-area compound, which is now being offered up for rent.
For $65,000 a month, the 12.3-acre estate gives renters a sensational 8,100-square-foot main house, along with a guest house and historic cabin for a total of 7 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms. The property is located on the backside of Aspen Mountain and includes a private ski run.
Celebrity Real Estate: Neil Young, Tracy Morgan, Marc Anthony
By Laura Vecsey
Hey, Hey! Neil Young Lists His Hawaiian Paradise
Rust never sleeps, and neither does Neil Young. The rockin’ rebel with a big acoustic side has split from his long-time wife, taken up with Daryl Hannah, ordered his music off streaming services and launched a music machine and a homemade, green automobile. Now it looks like Young is ready to part with his Hawaiian getaway.
The native Canadian who has set the standard for folk rock the past 40 years has listed his Kohala Coast estate for $24.5 million. The property includes a whopping 830 feet of ocean frontage, a 5-bedroom main house plus two 2-bedroom guest homes. Snorkel adventures await right outside the door in Kiele Bay. Hopefully, Young won’t regret giving up the place, especially with more tour dates booked for this fall down the West Coast.
‘30 Rock’ Star Hits New Jersey
Tracy Morgan has settled with Walmart after a deadly accident caused by one of the company’s truck drivers left the comedian seriously injured 14 months ago. He has just married his longtime fiancée. So how did the newlyweds celebrate? They bought a big mansion in Alpine, New Jersey.
Morgan’s new spread cost $13.9 million and spans 21,000 square feet and sits on 2 acres. The fun house is loaded with amenities, including 5 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, a 6-car garage, bowling alley, racquetball court, screening room and swimming pool. It’s been a boost for Morgan, who is slated to host “Saturday Night Live” this fall.
Salsa King Swings South
Marc Anthony is looking to further divest from the West Coast. After selling his Encino home, the Salsa King has now listed his Tarzana home for $4.125 million. Apparently, with a new entertainment firm in Miami, the former Mr. J-Lo has no need for Los Angeles homes, so he is saying “adios” to the 5-bedroom, 7-bathroom traditional home which he only purchased seven months ago. Once a part owner in the Miami Dolphins, Anthony is no stranger to South Beach and the music scene in south Florida.
Celebrity Real Estate: Serena Williams, Venus Wlliams, Alicia Keys
By Laura Vecsey
Sisters & Doubles Partners Sell NYC Loft
Serena and Venus Williams have always felt at home in New York, where the star tennis sisters have won eight U.S. Open Championships between them, plus a few doubles titles, too. Now, just a month ahead of the 2015 Open, in which Serena will attempt to win her seventh Open in her incomparable career, the pair has sold their Fashion District loft for $2.1 million.
The sisters bought the 1,800-square-foot Manhattan loft for $1.335 million in 2005, but never did move in or decorate the mostly raw space. The one-bedroom with massive open space was purchased by Ted Wells, the attorney charged with investigating the New England Patriots’ actions in deflating footballs to optimize pressure for quarterback Tom Brady.
Alicia Offering Keys For Right Buyer
Two years after singer Alicia Keys and hip hop artist Swizz Beatz took over Eddie Murphy’s New Jersey mansion, the couple are moving on. The 25,000-square-foot home has hit the market for $14.9 million. Word is that the art-collecting parents of two young kids want even more space to display their growing art collection. Or, at least, more wall space.
Murphy’s former funhouse includes a movie theater, indoor swimming pool, two-lane bowling alley and professional recording studio. The couple previously lived in Manhattan but sold that penthouse in 2013 for $12.75 million.
Celebrity Real Estate: Donald Trump, Rosie O'Donnell, Dennis Miller
By Laura Vecsey
$54M Presidential-Style Palace Once Owned By Trump for Sale
Donald Trump’s presidential aspirations are still an unfolding drama. But his development and real estate legacies are already the stuff of legend – as evidenced by the listing of Trump’s former family compound in Greenwich, CT.
The 6-acre peninsula property on the Long Island Sound has been listed for sale for $54 million. The estate served Trump back in the 1980s, when he and Ivana decamped there to raise their children. After their divorce in 1991, Ivana took possession and later sold it.
The new owners subdued the Ivana-inspired decor and added a 4,000-square-foot addition, which includes a lap pool. This goes along with an outdoor pool overlooking the Sound, and a total of 19,773 of living space that sports 8 bedrooms, 11.5 baths.
Rosie Buys Again in Florida
Speaking of Donald Trump – the real estate magnate’s favorite target, Rosie O’Donnell, has bought a Florida vacation home. This time, the comedian has opted to head back to the Atlantic side of the coastal state with the purchase of a $5.275 million home in West Palm Beach.
The 6-bedroom home 180 feet of waterfront on the Intracoastal Waterway, complete with an outdoor pool and dock. This is the third Florida home for O’Donnell, who sold her Star Island prize in Miami a few years back for $16.5 million, then owned a beachfront home in Sarasota, which she has sold.
The purchase caps a madcap few years of real estate wheeling and dealing for the former “The View” host. She has listed her Nyack, New York compound; sold a Greenwich Village condo and has now listed her New Jersey Tudor for sale, too.
Dennis Miller Gives Up On the View
Dennis Miller and his wife, Carolyn Espley-Miller, sold their oceanside mansion south of Santa Barbara, Calif., for $19 million. The couple had listed the 6,000-square-foot beauty for $22.5 million in January.
The Millers joked that they couldn’t get any work done in the house because they were either staring off into the amazing Pacific Ocean views or talking on the phone, telling other people how nice it was.
The 5-bedroom, 5.5-bathroom home includes 63 feet of beachfront and a half acre on the exclusive Padaro Lane.
Mortgage Rates Expected to Move Lower
Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages rose this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.77 percent, up 2 basis points from the same time last week.
The 30-year fixed mortgage rate rose Wednesday, then returned to the current rate and stayed there for the rest of the week.
“Mortgage rates temporarily rose last week after the Atlanta Fed president said interest rates could increase in September, but ended the week essentially where they started,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “Mortgage rates should move lower as investors seek safety after China devalued the yuan. Friday’s Consumer Sentiment data could also move rates toward the end of the week.”
Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 2.96 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.83 percent.
Celebrity Real Estate: Julia Roberts, Hilary Swank, Vince Vaughn, Johnny Galecki
By Laura Vecsey
Julia Roberts Selling; Hilary Swanking Renting
What do the Pretty Woman and the Million Dollar Baby have in common? Julia Roberts and Hilary Swank are giving up their Manhattan properties — though Swank is just seeking a renter for her West Village condo while Roberts wants to sell.
Roberts is asking $4.5 million for her 3-bedroom, 3-bath Greenwich Village home. Swank is looking to lease her 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom condo for $20,000.
Either way, both A-list actresses are still tied to NYC. Roberts owns another downtown residence and may only be looking to unload this property if reports of an impending divorce are true. Swank, on the other hand, is seeking a renter willing to sign a one-year lease. She’s residing in California while she’s nursing her dad back to health after a lung transplant.
Vince Vaughn Moving On
A year after buying a massive Manhattan Beach home, Vince Vaughn is looking to unload his Colonial in La Canada Flintridge in Southern California. The actor, currently starring in HBO’s “True Detective” show, is asking $5.299 million for the 5,563-square-foot home.
The 5-bedroom, 6-bathroom home cost the actor $3.925 million in 2013. Vaughn, who bought a $2.375 home in Hollywood Hills last year, is also trying to sell his Chicago penthouse which is listed for $13.9 million.
Galecki Buys From Statham
“Bing Bang Theory” star Johnny Galecki has purchased action star Jason Statham’s Beverly Hills home for $9.2 million. This is the same Spanish-style estate that Statham bought from Ben Stiller.
There’s little mystery as to why the 6-bedroom, 6-bath estate is a hot property. With dark woodwork, Spanish tiles, lush gardens that boast a fountain and secluded pool, this home is the perfect L.A. oasis.
Celebrity Real Estate: Donald Trump, Mike Huckabee, Sia
By Laura Vecsey
Trump Beats Huckabee -- In Real Estate Deals
Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee has dropped the price on his Little Rock house to $674,000. If nothing else, it’s proof that the former Arkansas governor is nowhere near the same ZIP code as the current GOP presidential frontrunner, Donald Trump
While Huckabee has taken some notes from The Donald on how to attract a buyer, the former governor comes nowhere near the $21 million deal Trump just made for his Manhattan penthouse.
Like Huckabee, who first listed his Little Rock home for $850,000 in 2013, Trump started off seeking $35 million for the Trump Park Avenue condo before cutting the price twice and accepting $14 million under his original list price.
Maybe Huckabee is closer to the right price now for the 5-bedroom, 6-bathroom home. Or maybe the pair of real estate sellers will trade tips on the GOP debate floor.
Yes, Sia’s New Home Comes With Chandeliers
With her hit songs and her star fully risen in the music industry, it was time for notoriously shy Sia to spread her wings and fly into a bigger, better home. Now the singer-songwriter has found the right manse in Los Angeles, settling on a $4.7 million Mediterranean Revival. The 1920s-era home is in Los Feliz and comes complete with stained glass murals, a sunken living room and spectacular city views.
Celebrity Real Estate: Beck, Taraji P. Henson, Facebook Co-Founder Chris Hughes
By Laura Vecsey
Beck Selling Santa Monica home
Maybe Beck has turned into a flipper. The singer listed his 4-bedroom, 4-bath Tudor after paying $2.711 million in February. The property is back on the market for $2.795 million. The home wasn’t a primary residence for Beck, who owns another place in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles.
Beck was the big winner at this year’s Grammy Awards, taking home the trophy for Album of the Year for the soothing collection “Morning Phase.”
Taraji P. Henson Now a Landlord
With a fresh Emmy nomination for best actress in a drama for her performance as Cookie Lyon in the smash cable hit “Empire,” Taraji P. Henson is celebrating in the big L.A. house she moved into last summer. But the actress is not above being a landlord: Henson’s San Fernando Valley home is on the rental market.
Listed for $3,400 a month, the 1,400-square-foot stucco home is where Henson lived for 10 years. The 2-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom home is tidy and neat with an in-ground pool, but no one can blame her for moving on up after scoring leading roles in several successful television series. Henson’s fellow Emmy nominees include Viola Davis, "How to Get Away With Murder"; Robin Wright, "House of Cards"; Elisabeth Moss, "Mad Men"; Claire Danes, "Homeland" and Tatiana Maslany, "Orphan Black."
Facebook Co-Founder Giving Up Lofty NYC Spot
As the new face of millennial power, Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes and his investor husband Sean Eldridge have received lots of attention over the past few years for their career and real estate undertakings. Now the couple is looking to sell their whoppingly-large New York City loft. The 4,100-square-foot condo at 30 Crosby is on the market for $8.75 million.
With 12-foot ceilings and a grand living room that runs almost 40-feet long, the interior space includes a formal dining room, a library and huge kitchen connected to a west wing that features 3 bedrooms.
Meanwhile, Hughes and Eldridge have other NY homes to hang their hats. They famously bought not one but two estates in two different congressional districts north of NYC to give Eldridge a chance at winning a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. His campaign, however, was a bust.
Celebrity Real Estate: Katie Holmes, Gigi Hadid, Joan Rivers
By Laura Vecsey
Holmes Cruises Into $25K NYC Rental
Katie Holmes has found a $25,000-a-month penthouse in Chelsea. The lease gives the former Mrs. Cruise a place to hang with daughter Suri when the two aren’t out West in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Calabasas.
The contemporary look of the 3-bedroom, 2-bath apartment is super slick and comes with a wood-burning fireplace, chef’s kitchen, master suite and plenty of outdoor terrace space, including an outdoor shower.
Her ex, Tom Cruise is making real estate moves of his own. The "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation" star is still trying to find a buyer for his Hollywood Hills home. He’s asking $13 million for the property.
Gigi Parting with NYC Home
Taylor Swift bestie and model Gigi Hadid, is selling her luxurious lower Manhattan apartment, reportedly because of a stalker. That makes her residency in the 935-square-foot SoHo abode less than a year. Her mom, model Yolanda Foster who has appeared on “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”, was the buyer last August, and now looks to gain about a half million dollars from the sale – if the hot NYC market fetches a full-price offer.
Joan Rivers' Penthouse Sold
Joan Rivers’ opulent Manhattan triplex has found a buyer. The late comedian’s estate fetched a full-price offer on the $28 million Upper East Side apartment overlooking Central Park.
Rivers was no stranger to over-the-top jokes and decor and likened her abode to something straight out of Marie Antoinette. The comedian once told Vanity Fair that the ill-fated French queen was the historical figure with whom she most identified, since they both had “great style.”
The gilded penthouse sprawls 5,100 square feet and has 23-foot ceilings, not to mention antique boiserie paneling, ornate fireplaces, a ballroom, master suite, terraces, a wood-paneled library and a separate 2-bedrooms, 2-bathroom headquarters.
Celebrity Real Estate: Scott Disick, Nicole Richie, Joel Madden, Floyd Mayweather
By Laura Vecsey
Bachelor Pad For Never-Married Disick
With his July Fourth weekend breakup with long-time partner Kourtney Kardashian, Scott Disick isn’t lacking a place to camp out. Months ago, the father of three bought a Beverly Hills home of his own for $3.699 million. Allegedly, he was going to fix it and flip it, but in reality, the former ranch house has already undergone a remodel, including an entire second-story addition to bring the home to just over 4,000 square feet.
Not So Candidly, They’re Selling
Nicole Richie and Joel Madden may or may not be splitting up, but the star of a reality show, “Candidly Nicole” does have a new Beverly Hills abode.
Maybe that’s why the couple are looking to sell their Laurel Canyon home? The list price is $3.495 million, a tidy sum more than the $1.9 they paid in 2009 for the reimagined home with a mid-century modern vibe. There are 5 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms under soaring ceilings while the outdoor area features a nice courtyard and lagoon-style pool.
Mayweather Sticking with Condo Life
Fresh off a $180 million payday, welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. was “celebrating” his unanimous decision smackdown of rival Manny Pacquiao by trying to deliver a big TKO to his Florida condo.
But it looks like he’s changed his mind. Mayweather was asking $1.999 million for his condo high above Sunny Isles Beach, FL, a barrier island north of Miami. That was way underweight from the $2.599 million list price from last July.
The penthouse is a sprawling 3,020 square feet with 4 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms.
Celebrity Real Estate: Bret Michaels, Geraldo, Robin Thicke
By Laura Vecsey
Guess It Wasn’t a Love Match
Poison frontman Bret Michaels -- who has unleashed himself into all manner of TV-star success stories (“Rock of Love” and “Celebrity Apprentice” which he won) -- is looking to unload his California beauty. In this case, the beauty is Michaels’ $3.649 million home in Calabasas.
The rocker has listed the 6,797-square-foot abode just as he readies for a tour to support his new album, “True Grit.” The spread contains 5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, a courtyard and a wine cellar. He only bought the place last year, proving once again that Michaels knows how to love ‘em and leave ‘em.
Higher Ratings – Or View – For Geraldo
Television personality Geraldo Rivera is looking for a broader perspective with his new penthouse condo overlooking Central Park.
Rivera and his wife, Erica, paid $5.6 million for the 40th-floor unit that’s 2,500 square feet with 4 bedrooms, including a double-sized master suite, and 3 bathrooms. That was a good deal off the $6.25 million list price.
The couple, who have a 9-year-old daughter, own a home in New Jersey overlooking the Hudson River, and they also own another unit in the building on 89th Street, just east of Central Park.
No Blurred Lines on Robin Thicke’s Malibu Spread
With his divorce from Paula Patton settled and his home in the Los Angeles area sold for a tidy profit, Robin Thicke is moving up. Or, at least, to Malibu.
The blue-eyed crooner who’s had more than his share of drama in the past few years bought a $2.4 million estate in Malibu. The 1.7-acre property includes a 4-bedroom mid-century modern abode with ocean views and fruit trees and a 4-stall horse corral. After too much spotlight, Thicke said he just wants to chill out.
“Blurred Lines” has also meant big profits for Thicke’s collaborator Pharrell. The “Happy” singer recently put down $7.14 million for a contemporary estate in the hills above Los Angeles.
Mortgage Rates Remain Volatile
Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages rose this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.95 percent, up 2 basis points from the same time last week.
The 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell to 3.82 percent last Friday, then hovered around 3.86 percent before rising to the current rate on Tuesday.
“Rates fell last week due to continued uncertainty about Greece’s fiscal situation and the Fed signaling it might wait longer than expected to raise interest rates, but recovered as negotiations with Greece continue,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “Rates will likely be volatile until a deal between Greece and its creditors is finalized.”
Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 3.04 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.82 percent.
Celebrity Real Estate: Kesha, Troy Aikman, Penn Jillette
By Laura Vecsey
Kesha Lists Venice Beach Home
Kesha has undergone a few changes in her life in recent months, and now it looks as if the pop singer wants to change her address, too. She has listed her modest-but-cute Spanish-style home for $1.849 million.
The home sits in the heart of Venice Beach, and while small, provides a nice little oasis away from the bustle of this busy beachside community in L.A. The listing comes just as Kesha continues her nasty legal battle against her former producer, Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald, who signed Kesha at age 18 and, according to her, exerted too much control.
Aikman Scores Home Sale
Former Dallas Cowboys QB and NFL analyst Troy Aikman has sold his sprawling Dallas mansion for $5.4 million. That’s a little shy of the first down he was seeking from his original list price of $5.95 million, but it will get the job done.
The 4-bedroom, 6-bath home on a third of an acre boasts an elevator, an outdoor entertainment zone and a theater with a refreshments bar suitable for kicking back with a reel of play-by-plays. Aikman won’t be homeless, though. He owns another home in Dallas and one in nearby Coppell, TX.
Presto! Vegas Magic for Penn Jillette
Penn Jillette is the jaw-flapping half of the comedy/magic team Penn & Teller and has just pulled a huge rabbit out of his hat. Or, make that, a sleek modern home outside of Las Vegas.
Jillette paid $3.3 million for a 7,800-square-foot contemporary mansion that contains 5 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms and a whole lot of living space. His agent said that the new spread was appealing because of the indoor-outdoor feel.
Celebrity Real Estate: Michael Jackson, Cindy Crawford, Ben McKenzie
By Laura Vecsey
Neverland for Sale Again
Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch is back on the market for $100 million, but this time without the carnival attractions and animals that made the King of Pop’s palace more Disney than Motown.
The 2,700-acre ranch is just north of Santa Barbara and became Jackson’s dream escape after he bought the property in 1987 for $19.5 million.
The property features some 22 structures, including a 12,000-square-foot main house with six bedrooms and attached staff quarters. There are also two- and four-bedroom guesthouses, a swimming pool, basketball court, tennis court and 50-seat movie theater with a private viewing balcony.
Supermodel Home for Sale
Cover girl Cindy Crawford and her restaurateur husband, Rande Gerber, have made a big splash in the Malibu real estate market. The couple have listed for sale a home they bought last summer and then remodeled into a sleek, new beauty.
The 1.4-acre estate is listed for $15.45 million, or more than double than the $6 million they paid last year for the 1958 abode that features a great room, gourmet kitchen, wide-plank floors and exposed beam ceilings. There’s also a private path to the ocean and a backyard that features a lagoon-style pool.
‘Gotham’ Star Makes Getaway to NYC
Det. Jim Gordon can’t possibly do his job in New York City when his house is in California. So, what’s an actor to do?
Now that he’s starring as the famous detective in the New York-based TV series “Gotham,” Ben McKenzie has listed his 3-bedroom, 2.5-bath Hollywood Hills home at $1.895 million.
The home features a master suite with a steam room and tub and a private guest house.
Celebrity Real Estate: Caitlyn Jenner
Caitlyn Jenner, previously known as Bruce Jenner – the former Olympian and now reality star, has purchased a home in Malibu for $3.575 million.
The 4-bedroom, 4-bathroom home takes full advantage of its location and blends the outdoors and indoors. A dining room features a full-glass wall to take in the water views. To keep things comfortable year-round, the cozy step-down living room has a fireplace. The open loggia, grilling area and outdoor pool/spa area also have a fireplace.
There's also a comfortable all-white kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances and a large center island.
Surprisingly, the home is not located in the same area as some of his famous family members. Daughter Kylie found a place blocks away from sisters Kourtney and Khloe earlier this year. Kylie paid $2.7 million for her home in Calabasas. Caitlyn's ex Kris Jenner and Kim live near them in Hidden Hills.
Celebrity Real Estate: Paula Deen, Miley Cyrus, Jason Biggs
By Laura Vecsey
Cooking Up an Estate Sale
Celebrity chef Paula Deen got burned with some unsavory talk a few years back that cost her star status – and her saucy, buttery TV show. Now the former host is asking $12.5 million for the Savannah estate where she cooked up her Food Network shows.
The nearly 4-acre riverfront property was built in 2009 and is called “Riverbend.’’ The entire living space spans a massive 28,000 square feet. There’s 8 bedrooms and 8.5 bathrooms in total. The property includes a French Caribbean-style main house, two guest cottages, dock house, an 8-car garage, outdoor kitchen, a pond and a swimming pool with a dive-in theater.
Twerking with the Ponies
It appears as if Miley Cyrus has had it with the break-ins at her Toluca Lake home and is opting for a bigger spread.
Reports have it that Cyrus paid $4.037 million for a 5.5-acre horse ranch in Hidden Hills, CA. The 6,500-square-foot home includes 7 bedrooms, 6 baths and a loft-style great room with wide-plank wood floors, beamed ceilings and walls of French doors.
The party may not be stopping for Miley, though. The new property boasts a 1,000-bottle wine cellar to accompany the property’s cabernet sauvignon and merlot vineyard – offering a nice way to relax after spending the day out in the 10-stall barn and 1-acre horse riding area.
Off-Camera Moves for Jason Biggs
While he’s out of season three of “Orange is the New Black,” Jason Biggs is calling for action in his real life. The “American Pie” actor has listed his mid-century modern home above the Sunset Strip for $2.595 million.
Biggs and his wife have owned the 2,756-square-foot home since 2007 and tried to sell it a year ago, but took it off the market over the winter. The 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom home boasts a pool, terrace and covered gym and, best of all, expansive views of L.A. and the Pacific Ocean.
Celebrity Real Estate: Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie Want Easier Living in the Big Easy
Brad and Angelina are breaking up with their current French Quarter mansion, but that doesn’t mean their love affair with New Orleans is ending.
The paparazzi are never far from the mega-watt couple, and their prime location home on Governor Nicholls St. was even on the fan tour circuit. When it was Brad waving from the balcony, fans were ecstatic. But when the couple let Jonah Hill stay for a month, Hill says the fans were a bit much. “I’d get out of the car, and you could hear a collective audible sigh of annoyance when it wasn’t Brad Pitt,” Hill told Jon Stewart on The Daily Show.
It stands to reason the couple is looking for something a little more private in the area. The house is on the market for $6.5 million and Pitt and Jolie are still looking for their next abode nearby.
Five bedrooms and five bathrooms, a gourmet chef’s kitchen, full laundry room and a separate two-story guest house are some of the amenities. Standout features include the Old World charm of a spiral staircase, custom marble fireplaces and mantles, Venetian plastered walls and a gorgeous balcony.
Fully renovated by Pitt himself, the home is resplendent with modern conveniences, including an elevator.
Pitt’s former homes have also been updated by the actor, including a Malibu property that he sold to Ellen DeGeneres. That home is set back from the Pacific Coast Highway behind private gates and comes with access to a sandy beach cove.
Celebrity Real Estate: Patrick Dempsey, Zooey Deschanel
By Laura Vecsey
The Anatomy of a Sale
Unfortunately for Patrick Dempsey, life’s changes mean he must part with the Frank Gehry-designed estate. The estate he bought six years ago is on the market for $14.5 million, while Dempsey has already moved to his new Venice Beach mini-compound.
The three-acre property in Malibu is the stuff made for Architectural Digest, which did indeed feature the corrugated metal home shaped as a rhomboid – a home and garden design Dempsey told the magazine he loved.
With ocean views and raised gardens, the 3-bedroom, 3.5-bath home features floors made of repurposed scaffolding, a concrete sink in the kitchen and a sculpture studio. There is a nice pool surrounded by recycled wood decking, a fire pit and pizza oven.
‘New Girl’ Lists Old Home
With a baby on the way and a new $4.6 million house in Manhattan beach with hubby Jacob Pechenik, actress Zooey Deschanel has listed her half-acre, country-style estate in the Hollywood Hills that she bought from actor Mark Ruffalo.
The list price is $2.195 million for the 2,957-square-foot ranch that contains 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths and a large breakfast area that looks out over lush grounds and gardens.
Deschanel may have already found a buyer for the eclectic property. The home has a sale pending.
Celebrity Real Estate: Melanie Griffith, Antonio Banderas, Queen Latifah
By Laura Vecsey
An Estate Worthy of ‘Zorro’ and a ‘Working Girl’ Hits the Market
A casualty of the split between Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas is their lovely Los Angeles-area home, which has been listed for sale for $16.1 million.
The former Hollywood power couple bought the house for $4.2 million in 1999 and the following year added an adjacent lot for $1.3 million, according to public records.
The centerpiece of the property is a 15,000-square-foot Italian revival home built by the same architect who designed the Hoover Dam: Gordon B. Kaufmann. The home has 13 bedrooms, 11 bathrooms and a two-story banquet hall, four fireplaces, a library and an elevator. The grounds are equally as sumptuous. The couple combined two lots to create an acre-and-a-half sanctuary complete with lawns, organic gardens and a pool.
Jersey Girl Gets a Deal
Queen Latifah’s first real estate trophy finally sold for $2.1 million. The 9.5-acre spread in Colts Neck was purchased by the New Jersey native in 2001 and it has fetched a little less than she paid. It may not matter too much to the Queen, who said she enjoyed years of friends and family fun in the home, which includes a nice backyard swimming pool.
The entertainer is still trying to sell a 2,026-square-foot bungalow in Los Angeles that hit the market last fall. The price for that little home is $1.799 million, down by $140,000 from its initial listing price.
Celebrity Real Estate: Tom Cruise, Julia Roberts, Marc Anthony, Sean Combs
By Laura Vecsey
Cruising For a Sale
Tom Cruise is on the move. The actor has listed his 2.75-acre villa in the Hollywood Hills for just under $13 million.
The main house has a very natural-style interior replete with wide-plank oak floors and Venetian plaster walls and a farm-style kitchen. There are three en-suite bedrooms. Meanwhile, a separate guest house has 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms and a kitchen. The hilltop property also sports a lagoon-style heated pool with waterfall and spa.
This is not the only property Cruise has tried to sell recently. Late last year Cruise listed his off-the-grid estate in Telluride that he designed. He decided to part ways with the $59 million cedar home since he was no longer using it.
Pretty Woman Lists Hawaiian Estate
Julia Roberts is saying “aloha” to her beachfront estate in Hanalei, HI. According to reports, the property features more than 200 feet of beachfront and is being shopped for $29.85 million.
Roberts purchased the property in 2011 for $13.4 million. The “The Faye Estate” spans 2 acres and is named for the sugar plantation manager who bought it in 1915. The 3,792-square-foot home was built in 1946 and has 7 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms.
J-Lo’s Exes Selling Million-Dollar Mansions
What else do Diddy and Marc Anthony have in common – besides Jennifer Lopez? The NYC-born hip-hop mogul and the Latin crooner are both still looking for buyers for their metro New York-area compounds.
Anthony, who was married to Jenny from the Block and is the father of her twins, has just cut the price on his Long Island compound by $2.5 million to its current price of $9.495 million.
The 10-bedroom, 8-bathroom estate is located in the rolling hills of Brookville on the north shore of Long Island, about 30 minutes from Manhattan. But don’t worry about how to keep yourself entertained in the spread. The property includes a library, recording studio and professional home theater and eight fireplaces.
Anthony remarried last year to Venezuelan model Shannon De Lima and appears even more eager to divest of his U.S. real estate. Anthony also listed his 6-bedroom home in Encino, CA for sale late last year for $2.75 million.
Meanwhile, another one of J-Lo’s ex’s is also getting antsy for a sale. Diddy – who has long professed that J-Lo was one of his greatest loves in life – has put his NJ estate back on the market for $8.5 million.
Sean “Diddy” Combs’ estate includes three acres, swimming pool with waterfalls and a tennis court and putting green. Inside, there’s a theater, an indoor racquetball court and a professionally-equipped gym.
Last summer the entrepreneur reportedly paid $39 million for a mansion in the Holmby Hills section of Los Angeles. He is also still trying to sell a NYC condo, listed for $7.5 million.
Celebrity Real Estate: Carmelo Anthony, Robin Thicke, Jonah Hill
By Laura Vecsey
Carmelo Anthony Buys New Home
Everyone calls New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony “Melo.” So it’s little wonder that the NBA star was more than mellow about finding a permanent home in the Big Apple.
Four years after being traded to the Knicks, and after a brief flirtation about moving onto a new team, Anthony and his wife, La La Vasquez, have finally bought their own place.
The $11 million crib is a complete floor at 508 W. 24th Street in West Chelsea, one of the hottest neighborhoods in the city these days thanks to the popularity of the High Line park and all the galleries, restaurants and shops.
Melo’s double unit is in a 10-story boutique building and is modernly designed with oversized windows, walnut and Calacatta gold marble chef’s kitchen and wood-burning fireplaces. Building amenities include private storage, a bike room, a shared courtyard with a gas grill and a gym – the perfect place for the ailing Knicks’ star to rehab his knee.
No Blurred Lines on This L.A. House Sale
For a man with some big hits in the past year, singer-songwriter Robin Thicke has been down on his luck lately. He got publicly shamed and divorced from his longtime love, actress Paula Patton, then was ordered to pay $7.4 million in damages for ripping off Marvin Gaye’s hit song “Got To Give It Up.”
But, finally, something good is happening for the 38-year-old entertainer. According to the Los Angeles Times, Thicke collected $4.9 million for the sale of his Hollywood Hills house, which was about $2 million over the $2.985 million list price.
The 3,158-square-foot home with super-high ceilings and other architectural details was first bought by Thicke’s father, Alan, in 1990 for $910,000. Located in the Bird Streets area, the Spanish-tiled home is a 1965 classic.
Jonah Hill Jumping From Howard Street in NYC
Jonah Hill is trying harder this time to shed his Soho pad. The “Wolf of Wall Street” actor has listed his classic New York loft apartment for $3.5 million, down from the price Hill originally sought for the 2,000-square-foot unit in the summer of 2014.
The apartment is currently configured as a huge one bedroom. It’s so big, in fact, that Hill has a piano located across from the king-size bed. The apartment has its original, century-old hardwood floors, plus exposed brick walls and marble bathrooms. It’s been renovated with a gourmet kitchen, central air conditioning and a washer-dryer.
Celebrity Real Estate: Barack Obama, Bristol Palin
By Laura Vecsey
Hawaiian Estate’s Rumored Purchase by the Obamas, Bristol Palin Selling in Alaska
Interesting news out of the 50th state of the union is sure to make some presidential waves -- if it turns out that speculation about ties to Barack Obama are true.
Television news station KOHN in Oahu reports that 3-acre oceanfront estate on Waimanaolo Beach made famous by the hit show “Magnum P.I.” has been purchased by an LLC whose mailing address is that of Obama fundraiser and Chicago lawyer Seth Madorsky. The property was sold on March 16 in a bit of mystery, but digging around has created a paper trail to Obama connections.
The Hawaiian home sold for $8.7 million which was above the asking price, but the mortgage note is about 1 million dollars more, which means the transaction could include cash for renovation to the historic property. The 1933 estate at 41-505 Kalanianaole Highway is called “Pahonu” and has belonged to a former local politician named Eve Glover Anderson for decades. It was the setting for Robin’s Nest, the oceanfront Hawaiian paradise featured in “Magnum P.I.”
According to KOHN, the deed and the mortgage are signed by Judy Grimanis, an executive assistant at a Chicago-based private capital firm run by Obama’s longtime friend and frequent Hawaii golf and travel partner Marty Nesbitt.
With only two years left in the White House, the Obama’s will need a place to land once his second term ends in January 2017. Whether it’s back on the island where Obama went to high school and lived with his maternal grandparents … the real estate gossip mill is churning. At least the President will be closer to his beloved shaved ice, should this deal be for real.
… Meanwhile, in the 49th state, the daughter of former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is engaged to be married and may be skipping out of Wasilla. Bristol Palin has listed her $549,000 lakefront home for sale.
Palin bought the half-acre property in 2011 and completely renovated the 3-bedroom, 3.5-bathroom home that features views of Lake Lucille and, true to Alaska outdoor form, fly-in access for seaplanes. Palin is engaged to a Medal of Honor recipient Dakota Meyer, a Kentucky native.
Celebrity Real Estate: Kylie Jenner, Joe Cocker, Allison Janney
By Laura Vecsey
Keeping Up With All the Kardashian/Jenner Moves
The Kardashian Klan nest is getting emptier and emptier. Not only has Bruce Jenner moved out and onto a new chapter in life, daughter Kylie Jenner is showing it’s her turn, too.
So what if she’s only 17?
The little sister of Khloe, Kim, Kourtney and Kendall is under contract to buy a $2.7 million home in Calabasas, CA. Unlike Kendall, who moved into her own $1.4 million condo in Westwood, Kylie will be just a stone’s throw away from Kourtney and Khloe. Meanwhile, mom Kris Jenner and sister Kim live in nearby Hidden Hills.
Kylie’s new 5-bedroom, 6-bathroom digs are in The Oaks development and the house is a spectacular 4,800 square feet, not including a 3-car garage.
Getting By With a Little Drop in the List Price
British blues crooner Joe Cocker lost his battle to cancer in December, several months after he listed his beloved Colorado ranch for $7.85 million. The 243-acre spread called Mad Dog Ranch is in the tiny town of Crawford and sports a very comfortable 7-bedroom home that Cocker had adorned with the work of local craftsman. Word is now that the price has been lowered to $7 million, and that includes the home’s greenhouse and gardens where Cocker grew his own veggies and tomatoes.
‘Mom’ Selling Her ‘West Wing’
Allison Janney has listed her 1,925-square-foot house in Studio City for sale for $1.495 million. The sweet 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom ranch sits on a half-acre lot with plenty of trees, decks and patio space to take full advantage of the solar-heated pool, mountain views and surrounding scenery. The interior is updated with a chef’s kitchen and a master suite with a vaulted wood-beam ceiling. Records show Janney bought the place for $799,000 in 2001.
Strong Economic Data Boost Mortgage Rate Increase
Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages rose this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.62 percent, up 6 basis points from this time last week.
The 30-year fixed mortgage rate rose early in the week, then hovered around 3.65 percent before returning to the current rate on Tuesday.
“Rates increased last week on strong economic data from both the U.S. and Europe,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “This week we expect some volatility as markets hold their breath for Friday’s monthly jobs report.”
Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate this morning was 2.87 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.75 percent.
Celebrity Real Estate: Dr. Dre, Rosie O'Donnell, Orlando Bloom
By Laura Vecsey
L.A.’s Most Expensive Teardown?
Rap mogul Dr. Dre turned some heads when he snatched up the $40 million Brentwood mega mansion built by Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady and his model wife Gisele Bundchen. But the story of Dre’s move just got more bouncy than a '64 Lincoln on amped-up hydraulic lifts.
Turns out that Dre has now sold his digs to Skyview Capital private equity firm founder Alex Soltani for $32 million, just so Soltani can raze the 10,000-square-foot house and rebuild on the site. The Los Angeles Times reports that Soltani aims to erect a $100 million “trophy home” on the lot that has views of the Sunset Strip and Los Angeles.
Rosie Sticking Close to Home
With news of her separation from wife Michelle Rounds, plus her decision to leave “The View,’’ Rosie O’Donnell is working hard to simplify her life. The comedian/actor/activist/talk-show host has listed the Florida getaway she bought in 2013 in Casey Key near Sarasota.
O’Donnell is asking $5.75 million for the Gulf-front home, which has 4 bedrooms, 5.5 baths and 100 feet of beachfront with a private dock and a nice outdoor pool. It’s situated on 0.78 acres of an 8-mile-long barrier island called Casey Key, south of Sarasota.
A heart attack survivor, O’Donnell said that she has made a decision to dial back the stress in her life. She has five kids, including four teenagers, and felt that working on “The View” was not good for her family or health. That means more time at her New Jersey home, where her kids attend school.
Orlando Bloom Shaking It Off
Less than six months after buying a loft in Tribeca’s old Sugarloaf Warehouse where Taylor Swift bought a $19 million penthouse, Orlando Bloom has decided he’s seen enough. Bloom has listed his 3-bedroom, 2.5-bath loft for $5.495 million. While it’s just speculation, could the reason he’s leaving behind this light-filled loft be the constant gaggle of Swift-seeking Paparazzi gathered near the entry?
15 Words Could Boost Your Home’s Sales Price
By Sally Deneen
Getting ready to sell your home? Be certain to play up in your listing that it's a "beautiful" home with "granite" counters and "stainless" steel appliances. Using such words in your description could boost the sales price by thousands of dollars, research suggests.
Conversely, using other words such as "nice" could cost you money, according to an analysis of U.S. home sales found in the book, "Zillow Talk: The New Rules of Real Estate."
For example, the listing for one Pittsburgh Victorian house listed this month played up its "modern upgrades," from the matching decorative custom plaster ceilings to "the granite and stainless beautiful kitchen." Good thinking, Zillow's research suggests.
Noting that a home is "upgraded" or "updated" can boost a home's final sales price, according to Zillow's analysis, so how you write a home description is important. The word "granite" alone boosted the sales prices of homes by as much as 4 percent more than expected, Zillow's research found.
The word "stainless" also upped sales prices, especially among lower-cost homes – which sold for 5 percent more on average than expected. The term "remodel" increased sales prices by 1.7 to 2.9 percent more than expected. Small wonder that many local listings use such terms.
Zillow analyzed 24,000 homes sales to determine 15 helpful terms to include in a listing. The real estate marketplace found that listings for lower-priced U.S. homes sold at prices 2.3 percent higher than expected when they used the word "beautiful."
Don't use certain words such as "nice," advises Zillow, which also found nine words that could cost you money. It's ambiguous.
"The buyer is left to interpret what 'nice' means," Zillow states, which may explain why low- and mid-priced home listings with the word “nice” sold for about 1 percent less than expected.
Celebrity Real Estate: Matthew Perry, Shannen Doherty, Tobey Maguire
By Laura Vecsey
Score Another One for Matthew Perry
Former Friends star-turned-real-estate-flipper Matthew Perry has done it again, but at a discount. Perry recently sold his beach house for $10.65 million – a little off the original list price of $13.5 million. Perry bought the 4-bedroom. 6-bathroom, modern wonder known as “Pier House” in 2005 for $6.55 million. With views of the Malibu pier and an open concept that sees the kitchen and living area open onto an ocean-view deck and lap pool, the 5,500-square-foot California beauty is a pretty sweet way to take in the Malibu scene. Perry has bought and sold his share of cool L.A. homes, from the Sunset Strip to the Hollywood Hills.
Hollywood 90210 Star Lists in Another ZIP Code
Shannen Doherty maybe have gone “Off the Map” in her new Great American Country network show, but back in California she’s listed her Malibu home for $2.495 million. With ocean views and a lagoon-style swimming pool, the low-key rambler contains 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and a chillaxing kitchen-living room set up that maximizes a fireplace and views of the Pacific Ocean.
Can Tobey Scale a Sale?
Tobey Maguire is looking to cast off his lovely plantation-style home in Brentwood for $10.25 million – about $2 million more than he paid talk show host Ricki Lake for the 6-bedroom, 5-bath spread. Designed by California architect John Byers in the 1940s, the 6,320-square-foot home includes an upstairs guest suite that overlooks the nearly one-acre property and has a private entrance.
Celebrity Real Estate: Jennifer Lopez, Bruce Willis, Steve Martin
By Laura Vecsey
Jennifer Lopez Selling California Home
Just days after appearing on the cover of “People” magazine with her 6-year-old twins in a story that showed off her sprawling Los Angeles area home, the ubiquitous pop icon J-Lo has announced she’s changing locations -- by about 2,500 miles.
The singer, dancer and actress has listed her 17,129-square-foot estate in the exclusive Hidden Hills neighborhood for $17 million.
Lopez bought the 9-bedroom, 12-bathroom home in 2010 when she was married to Latin crooner Marc Anthony. But since her divorce from Anthony, and a busted relationship with her backup dancer Casper Smart, J-Lo told “People” she had taken some time to overcome her fear of being alone.
Now it looks like in addition to those internal changes, the New York native is trading L.A. for her hometown. She bought a beautiful $22.5 million penthouse apartment in Manhattan last year and already owns a mansion in the Hamptons.
The newly-listed property in L.A. is set on 3 acres and includes a main house with 8 bedrooms as well as a second home that is strictly for entertaining: bar and lounge, 20-seat theater, recording studio, gym/dance studio and a bedroom suite complete with kitchen.
Dying Hard For the Upper West Side
Bruce Willis’ love for Central Park West knows no bounds. After just selling a $13 million apartment in the El Dorado, the “Die Hard” star and father of five has gone onto bigger and better things: A $16.9 million duplex just doors from the Museum of Natural History and Central Park.
Willis and his wife, Emma Heming, needed more space after the birth of their second child. The new digs deliver: 6,000 square feet, 6 bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms over two sumptuous floors with window views of the park.
And, if things get a little too tight in their Manhattan condo, Willis & family can head north to Westchester County where they have also bought a sprawling estate with a sumptuous pool on 23 acres overlooking the Croton Reservoir.
Steve Martin Wants To Get Small
It’s set in concrete now: Comedian and writer and banjo player Steve Martin wants to discard his Santa Barbara modern – for a cool $11 million.
After 20 years of living on the almost 6-acre compound, the art aficionado has listed for sale the all-concrete gem that is as much sculptural as it is a house. The 7,377-square-foot home was designed by Roland E. Coate, Jr. to maximize views of the Pacific Ocean and the hills near Montecito. The main house has 4 bedrooms, 5.5 baths, plus a detached 2-bedroom, 1-bath guest house and a 3-car garage.
The maverick Martin started off doing stand up and making a big splash on “Saturday Night Live” had moved onto other creatively successful ventures beyond movies and TV. He’s written books and pieces for The New Yorker as well as “The Underpants,” a play. He recently recorded a CD with Edie Brickell called “Love Has Come for You.”
Celebrity Real Estate: Channing Tatum, Marc Anthony, Gary Sinise, Leighton Meester
By Laura Vecsey
Channing Tatum’s Oscar-Worthy Move
Jumping streets: That’s literally what Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan Tatum are doing as they neighborhood hop from Laurel Canyon, where they still own a 1920s abode, to a brand new, family-friendly home in Beverly Hills.
The “Foxcatcher” actor and star of “21 Jump Street” and his lovely wife paid $6 million for a spot in L.A.’s 90210 ZIP code. The 4,853-square-foot Cape Cod has 6 bedrooms, 6 baths and sits on behind gates on a tree-lined acre and has a beautiful pool, spa and outdoor fireplace. Sure looks like a lovely place to raise their daughter, Everly.
Marc Anthony Goes Coast-to-Coast
With his recent marriage to Venezuelan model Shannon De Lima, singer and Puerto Rican native Marc Anthony is looking to divest himself of mansions on both coast of the United States. Anthony has just listed a 6-bedroom, 9-bathroom Spanish-style mansion in Encino, CA for $2.75 million.
Meanwhile, back in New York, Anthony is seeking $12 million for his Long Island compound in the exclusive Brookville area of the North Shore. The estate includes a main house with 10 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms, 8 fireplaces and a mahogany-paneled library. He bought the place in 2000 and shared it with his ex, Jennifer Lopez.
Lt. Dan Giving Final Salute to Calabasas
Gary Sinise has listed his mansion in Calabasas, Calif., for $3.895 million. The 4-bedroom, 5-bath home features walnut floors, an outdoor living room with fireplace and a pool, waterfall and koi pond. Sinise has moved on to a new home – he paid $5.25 million last April for a 9,400-square-foot villa on 28 acres, according to Variety.
The “Forrest Gump” and “CSI: NY” actor is working on new projects, including the non-profit Operation International Children that he has co-founded with “Unbroken” author Laura Hillenbrand.
Rumor Has It …
Married life is prompting “Gossip Girl” star Leighton Meester to cast off the last vestiges of her bachelorette days. She has listed her 2,800-square-foot home on Ventura Blvd. in Los Angeles.
Meester is asking $2.35 million for the 4-bedroom, 4.5-bathroom ranch-style home which she has owned since 2011. A year ago, she wed actor Adam Brody.
Celebrity Real Estate: Joan Rivers, Frank Sinatra, Kobe Bryant
By Laura Vecsey
Dearly Departed Queen of Snark’s Palace Back on NYC Market
Joan Rivers’ opulent penthouse off Fifth Avenue in the Upper East Side of Manhattan is back on the market, five months after the comedian unexpectedly died at age 81. The new list price is $28 million, down from the $29.5 million Rivers sought for the 5,100-square-foot triplex in 2012. Rivers had originally listed the grand residence for $25 million back in 2009, when she considered a full-time move to Los Angeles to live near her daughter Melissa and her grandson -- a scenario that failed to materialize despite some pretty hilarious hijinks that the mother-daughter duo chronicled on their reality TV show, Joan & Melissa. The apartment is unique, in part for its grand scale (23-foot ceilings, magnificent ballroom, music room and separate guest quarters) and for the Marie Antoinette decor that’s straight out of Versailles.
Start Spreading the News
Frank Sinatra’s former home finally has a buyer after lots of time on the Manhattan real estate market and a $2.7 million price drop. The last list price was just a hair under $5M for the “glittering grotto in the sky.” The 3,200-square-foot penthouse is in The Edgewater, a white-glove building overlooking the East River in Lenox Hill. It was here that the Chairman of the Board partied with the likes of Mia Farrow, President Kennedy and Sammy Davis, Jr. back in the day.
Kobe Shoots Down List Price
Turns out that Kobe Bryant’s injured rotator cuff isn’t the only thing that has taken a recent cut. The Lakers’ star has also slashed the price of his Newport Coast home in Los Angeles to $6.995 million, down more than $1.5 million from the original list price back in August 2013.
Bryant had surgery on his shoulder on January 28, which will put him out of action for 9 months. That gives Bryant time to try and hustle along the sale of the 8,471-square-foot Mediterranean mansion he and his wife, Vanessa, bought back in 1997 for $1.7 million, then had remodeled to include an 850-square-foot gym, hair salon and an in-home theater with its own lobby and wet bar. The yard features an extra-deep, custom-built pool and spa, fire pit and outdoor kitchen in a yard with ocean and city views.
Becoming a Landlord Pays Off in Pittsburgh
By Paul Tooher
Homeowners in Pittsburgh thinking about putting their property up for sale might want to think twice. Renting out their existing home might be more profitable both in the short term and in the long run.
That’s the conclusion of a new study conducted by Zillow, which looked at the impact the great recession has had on the housing market.
According to Zillow, there are three reasons why becoming a landlord rather than selling a property may make sense today.
The first is that despite the sharp recovery in housing prices recently, many homeowners still find themselves “underwater” – when the value of their home is less than their existing mortgage.
But while housing prices have slowly climbed, demand for rental properties has soared in recent years. Over the past five years, the share of prime working-age adults (25-54) who rent their home has risen rapidly from a two-decade low of 28 percent in 2005 to 36 percent in 2013.
Among young adults age 25 to 35, only about one-third rented in 1980 compared with about half in 2013. And many analysts say millennials are increasingly likely to defer buying a home in favor of renting.
Home values are expected to continue rising in the future, making it likely that the property you own today will be more valuable in the future.
Pittsburgh home values have gone up 16.8 percent over the past year and Zillow predicts they will rise 3.9 percent within the next year. Zillow also states that 11.2 percent of Pittsburgh homeowners are underwater on their mortgage.
According to Zillow’s calculations, a homeowner who elects to rent rather than sell their property can expect to make a monthly profit of $110. And the news gets even better over time.
Rising real estate prices will add another $983 in monthly profit, meaning the net monthly profit from both rent and equity will total $1,093 a month.
Homeowners in San Jose, Calif., who defer selling their homes in favor of become a landlord are likely to see the largest long-term payoff, where rental income when combined with rising equity accounts for a monthly profit of $8,927.
Other communities with the biggest long-term payoffs include San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Riverside, Calif., New York City, Boston, Seattle, Sacramento, Calif., and Honolulu.
Pittsburgh a Top City for Love
By Paul Tooher
Romance may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about the Steel City.
But, according to a new report by Zillow, Pittsburgh is one of the 10 best cities in the nation to find love.
To create its ranking, Zillow looked at cities with populations greater than 250,000. It then looked at which cities had the highest percentage of singles, as well as which had the greatest percentage of singles who moved into town during the past year.
Zillow also looked at the median disposable income among single residents (median income minus median rent) and the number of restaurants, movie theaters and other date venues per capita.
Based on those criteria, Pittsburgh ranks sixth, with 67 percent of the population single. The number of single adults grew by 7.6 percent over the past year.
Zillow found that singles have an annual disposable income of $16,159 while the city boasts 30 date spots per 10,000 residents.
One factor attracting singles to the Steel City may be its relatively low rents. According to Zillow, the median rent price in Pittsburgh is $1,100 as of the end of January.
Zillow rated Washington, D.C., as the best city in America to find love, followed by Atlanta, Boston, St. Louis and Denver.
After Pittsburgh, Minneapolis, Nashville, St. Louis and Raleigh rounded out the top 10.
Of course, old married couples can find love in Pittsburgh, too. According to Sperling’s Best Places, Pittsburgh has the second-lowest percentage of divorced and separated boomer adults among the nation’s 50 largest cities.
The Steel City also ranks first in floral sales and second in candy sales among Sperling’s top cities for boomer romance.
And online retailer Amazon ranks Pittsburgh among the top 20 romantic cities in the nation, based on the sale of romance novels, music and romantic comedies.
Celebrity Real Estate: Miley Cyrus, Bob Hope, Olivia Wilde, Bruno Mars
By Laura Vecsey
Miley Cyrus’ Childhood Home Hits Market
The childhood home of the girl formerly known as Hannah Montana has hit the Toluca Lake real estate market in Los Angeles for $5.995 million.
Miley Cyrus spent her teen years with her parents, including “Achy Breaky Heart” papa Billy Ray, in the 8,700-square-foot mansion that features kicky amenities like with skateboard ramps, a theater room, an alcove for displaying guitars and outdoor entertainment areas with fireplaces. The Tuscan-style home has 6 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms all tucked behind a gate and tree-lined drive.
While Miley and her own millions moved into her own place when she was 18, Billy Ray and Tish Cyrus followed suit and moved out, too.
Olivia Wilde, Jason Sudeikis Selling Home
Olivia Wilde and former “Saturday Night Live” star Jason Sudeikis were loving life in their fabulous New York City condo until … it got too small for the expanded family. With their son Otis just turning 8 months old, the couple has already moved onto a bigger abode, prompting them to place their Meatpacking District apartment up for sale for $3.995 million. They paid $3.225 million for the 2-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom, 1,670-square-foot unit in 2012.
Bob Hope Estate Back on Market
Also in Toluca Lake, Bob Hope’s massive estate has returned to the market. This time, the 5-acre spread is listed for $24.99 million, down from the original list price of $27.5 million. Bob Hope and his wife Dolores lived and entertained in this home for decades. The property is walled and gated with a main residence that sprawls 15,000 square feet. There’s also a 2-bedroom guest house, staff quarters and offices. The grounds are equally impressive, including a beautiful pool and golfing greens.
Bruno Mars Finds New Home
Bruno Mars’ new hit single “Uptown Funk” shows off the Hawaii native’s James Brown-like chops, but apparently, the younger, newer version of “The Hardest Working Man in Show Business” has had time to do something else besides sing, dance and entertain: House shopping.
According to Variety, Mars is the new owner of a $6.5-million gated estate in Studio City, Calif. Taye Digs and Ididna Menzel recently let go of their family home in that area. Mars' new spread is much larger than the home Mars continues to own in star-studded Laurel Canyon.