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The Real Deal Los Angeles

Ellen DeGeneres has closed $150M in
real estate deals in last 2 years

The talk show host has bought and sold at least 8 homes across Southern California
By Natalie Hoberman | February 06, 2019 04:00PM

Ellen Degeneres and some of her real estate investments (Credit: Getty Images)

Ellen DeGeneres loves real estate so much she wrote a book about it.

The talk show host also starred in her own HGTV show, “Ellen’s Design Challenge.” And she launched a lifestyle brand that sells curated furniture and linens, called “ED by Ellen.”

Over at least the past two years, DeGeneres has been the biggest celebrity playing in the real estate game in Southern California, said Zach Goldsmith, an agent at Hilton & Hyland.

Just how big?

Since 2017, DeGeneres and her wife, actress Portia de Rossi, have closed at least $152 million in eight real estate trades, according to an analysis by The Real Deal.

But don’t call her a home flipper. In a 2014 interview with the New York Times, DeGeneres said she’s never “bought to sell.”

“I always say: ‘This is it. I’m never moving.’ People laugh at me now,” she quipped.

Other celebrities that are frequent home-flippers include Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Aniston, Diane Keaton, Brad Blumenthal, and Ashton Kutcher.

None come close to the level of DeGeneres, who has spread her holdings across Montecito, Carpinteria, Beverly Hills, Westwood and elsewhere.

In “Home,” her book about her real estate and decorating adventures, DeGeneres wrote that she had bought and renovated nearly a dozen homes over the past 25 years. When she was 13, she thought she would be an interior designer.

She certainly has the wealth to stay active in the property game. In 2018, the comedian earned $87.5 million — $20 million of that from her Netflix stand-up special — making her the 15th-highest-paid celebrity in the world, according to Forbes.

About half of DeGeneres’ $152 million in real estate trades came from properties the couple bought behind the guise of a trusted business manager, while the remainder were properties the couple sold.

Goldsmith said that DeGeneres’ stamp of approval helps her sell her properties for top dollar. “She convinces people to pay more than she pays, and we thought she was paying a lot when she bought it,” he said.

“Her name holds serious weight,” said Josh Altman, an agent at Douglas Elliman.

Here’s a list of some of the biggest trades DeGeneres closed in the last two years, according to an analysis of property records and news reports.

Bought Balinese-designed mansion in Montecito, $27 million, January 2019

In January, DeGeneres spent $27 million to buy a Balinese-influenced mansion in Montecito that includes five bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, two offices, a swimming pool and gym. Marsha Stroum Glazer and her husband Jay Glazer sold the 8,000-square-foot mansion to the talk show host.

Sold Beverly Hills compound, $35 million, October 2018

Last October, after completing a renovation, DeGeneres sold a Beverly Hills compound to Sue Gross, ex-wife of retired billionaire bond trader Bill Gross, for $35 million. That’s more than three times what the comedian and her wife paid for the 5,280-square-foot home in 2015.

Bought pedigreed home in Beverly Hills, $15 million, September 2018

DeGeneres bought the estate of the late actress Marjorie Lord in September 2018 for $15 million. Built in Hollywood Regency style, the 5,100-square-foot Beverly Hills home was recently remodeled by Marmol Radziner.

Sold 17-acre Montecito home, $34 million, July 2018

Last July, the comedian made $5 million off a sale to Netflix executive Ted Sarandos and his wife Nicole Avant, a former U.S. Ambassador to the Bahamas. Spread across 17 acres, the 10,500-square-foot estate in Montecito sold for $34 million. It was originally listed at $45 million.

Sold Rancho San Leandro in Montecito, $11 million, June 2018

In June, DeGeneres also pocketed a few million bucks from the sale of her Montecito ranch, dubbed Rancho San Leandro. She sold the 6,700-square-foot home for $11 million to Sean Rad, co-founder of Tinder. DeGeneres bought the 5.8-acre ranch, which borders Oprah’s property, for $7.2 million eight months prior.

Sold Beverly West condos, $11.85 million, June and December 2017

Last year, the talk show host unloaded a pair of condos she bought in Westwood’s Beverly West tower. She sold the first one in June 2017 for $6 million, and the second six months later for $5.85 million. Combined, she suffered a nearly $1.2 million loss on the condos.

Bought oceanfront home in Carpinteria, $18.6 million, October 2017

In October 2017, DeGeneres paid $18.6 million for a modern 6,000-square-foot home in Carpinteria, near Santa Barbara. The pad includes four bedrooms and five bathrooms, and offers sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean.