With reports of Ellen DeGeneres’ recent sale of the Brody House for a $15 million profit after just six months of ownership, an interesting trend has come to light in the luxury housing market in Southern California. A new entity is working to become a strong, notable presence on the luxury housing market and is transforming the world of ultra-exclusive, and ultra-high end: the celebrity home flipper.
While Degeneres’ sale to Napster billionaire Sean Parker has gotten market watchers talking, celebrity home flippers have been rather active in the Southern California housing market for quite some time now.
A few years ago, “Friends” actress Jennifer Aniston got in on the home flipping gain with her own profitable sale in Beverly Hills. In 2006, Aniston purchased a midcentury Beverly Hills mansion for $13.5 million, and completely overhauled the place into a luxurious sanctuary that simply radiates feelings of love, relaxation and a zen-like state. Aniston’s home, which she worked on with architect and designer Stephen Shadley, was even featured in Architectural Digest upon completion of the immense project.
“I want to say this is just right,” Aniston said to Architectural Digest. “I am so proud of this house. And I want to celebrate the people who made it: the master craftsmen who poured so much of themselves into its creation.”
Just a short while later, Aniston sold her “dream home” to Pimco billionaire Bill Gross for a reported $35 million, of which it is believed Aniston made a hefty profit.
Another actress making notable waves as a part-time home flipper is Diane Keaton, who specializes in historic renovations. The “Annie Hall” muse and self-proclaimed design addict’s most recent project involved a Spanish Colonial Revival in Beverly Hills. Keaton bought the property in 2007 for $8.1 million and then turned it around for a few million in profit when she sold to “Glee” creator Ryan Murphy for $10 million in 2010.
Luxury Los Angeles Real Estate Market is a Celebrity Flipper Playground
In the ultra-rich climate of Hollywood’s elite celebrities, one might wonder what draws them into the work involved into flipping a home. One factor that is at work here is the luxurious environment that they tend to live in. Los Angeles and its surrounding high-end communities have been a hot bed of luxury real estate since the early days of the city’s founding. There are a number of properties that require just a little bit of attention in order to garner a profitable turnaround.
With a recent rise in high-end property in Los Angeles, selling a newly renovated property is like shooting fish in a barrel for a celebrity with an eye for design. With a generous amount of capital on hand and the notoriety that comes with being one of the most famous names and faces in the world, celebrity home flippers are able to work with the most talented and sought-after designers and are able to bring attention to a property that might not get it otherwise.
“One of the advantages celebs have for flipping is brand recognition,” said luxury agent Mauricio Umansky to Forbes. “They can get their name out there.”
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