Kylie Jenner, Chrissy Teigen, and More Celebrities Keep Buying Homes During Pandemic
We’re in the middle of a pandemic, but some celebrities arestill buying luxurious homes. One example that likely comes to mind is KylieJenner’s $36.5 million Los Angeles mansion and ChrissyTeigen and John Legend’s $5.1 million West Hollywood home.
Why are celebrities still making high-priced home purchases right now? Showbiz Cheat Sheet spoke to Troy Palmquist, founder and broker at The Address, a luxury real estate brokerage. Here’s what he had to say.
Showbiz Cheat Sheet: Why are more celebrities buying luxury homes right now during the pandemic?
Troy Palmquist: For many, there’s the desire to takeadvantage of lower prices in some markets and unusually motivated sellers. Inpurely practical terms, larger lots, more outdoor recreation space, pools,tennis courts, and putting greens, in a time when there are no camps or countryclubs and international travel has been canceled, means being able to stay homeand stay outside more comfortably. This is especially true for those who havebeen living in highly desirable, yet crowded, in-town neighborhoods withsmaller footprints.
CS: What is one of the most extravagant celebrity home purchases you’ve heard about recently? Why did it make an impression on you?
TP: It just came out that Uber co-founder TravisKalanick bought LA’s Bellagio estate for $43.3 million. It’s a two-acreproperty with two pools and a tennis court and a lot of historical interest,aside from being just spectacularly beautiful. It originally listed for $75million, so Kalanick obviously got a great price and all the space he could askfor.
CS: Does the changing real estate market mean regular folks will have a chance to buy luxury celebrity homes? Are prices lower now because of the pandemic?
TP: In some cases, yes. It depends on the market, ofcourse, and the demand there. For example, The Hamptons has exploded becauseeveryone is trying to get out of NYC, so bargain hunters there are going to bedisappointed. On the other hand, in some markets where people are staying put andriding out the next few months, there may be some opportunities, especiallywith properties that have been sitting on the market since February or Marchwhen the Spring market got interrupted.
CS: What advice or precautions would you give peoplewho are looking to buy a home during the pandemic? Is it possible to find outif the previous homeowner had COVID-19?
TP: Many real estate associations have put into placea COVID-19 addendum to help protect both buyers and sellers in the event of aCOVID-related disruption to their transaction. While it may not be possible tofind out if the previous homeowners had COVID-19, you can certainly leave a fewdays to a week between the seller’s move-out date and your move-in date. Thatshould give any exposure time to die down. Follow up with a professionalcleaning crew and open up the house to let fresh air blow through, as well. Inthis case, patience is definitely a virtue.
CS: What advice would you give to people who arelooking to sell a home during the pandemic?
TP: Great marketing materials–photography, video, and copywriting — is key, especially when people have less access to the property itself. Emphasize and enhance outdoor spaces — that’s where everyone wants to be right now. Consider smart home updates and upgrades that allow owners to be more hands-off, including handsfree entrances and voice-activated controls. That offers peace of mind and convenience to buyers and makes the entire home healthier.
CS: Anything to add?
TP: I am bullish on the real estate market, both nowand in the future. A lot of people are finding out a lot of things about theirhomes and living situations, and I think we’ll see a lot of movement as marketsstart to recover and reopen. It’s an exciting time to be in luxury real estate.
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