April 15, 2014 |
Most Californians can't afford their rent. The state's affordability crisis has worsened since the recession, as soaring home prices and rents outpace job and income growth. Meanwhile, government funds to combat the problem have evaporated. Local redevelopment agencies once generated roughly $1 billion annually for below-market housing across California, but the roughly 400 agencies closed in 2012 to ease a state budget crisis. In addition, almost $5 billion from state below-market housing bonds, approved by voters last decade, is nearly gone.
April 15, 2014 |
Kevin Sorbo, known for his portrayal of Hercules and other muscular heroes, and his wife, actress Sam Jenkins, have listed their estate in Westlake Village at $4.5 million. The remodeled Mediterranean villa sits behind gates on 1.5 acres with a detached gym/pool house, a swimming pool set up for water volleyball, a spa, a covered entertainment area, an outdoor fireplace and a putting green. There's an expansive flat lawn suitable for javelin and discus throwing. Features of the elegant 7,556-square-foot home include a home theater with two tiers of seating, a game room, a den, two offices, five bedrooms and eight bathrooms.
April 12, 2014 |
The second vintage from Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's wine estate in southeast France is a spectacular rosé from an unspectacular year. Made by the Perrin family of the renowned Châteauneuf-du-Pape estate Château de Beaucastel, the 2013 Château Miraval rosé is elegant and fresh, with a scent of wild strawberries. I could drink this very serious rosé all summer long. Quantities are limited, though, and this one may be gone even before summer gets here. Have it with radishes and butter, with toasts spread with tapenade, crudités, grilled salmon or a simple roast chicken.
April 11, 2014 |
A Greenwich, Conn., estate called Copper Beech Farm has sold for $120 million, making it the most expensive recorded home sale in the U.S. Priced as high as $190 million, the 50.5-acre estate centers on an 1890s French Renaissance-style home of 13,519 square feet that sits on 4,000 feet of waterfront. The price surpasses private-equity chief Tully Friedman's $117.5-million sale last year of a nearly 9,000-square-foot home in Woodside, Calif. Named for copper beech trees on the site, the estate in Greenwich was sold by timber tycoon John Rudey.
HOME & GARDEN
April 11, 2014 |
Architect Stiles O. Clements had a knack for designing lavish buildings - the Spanish Colonial Revival El Capitan Theater, the Adamson House and the Art Deco Wiltern Theatre among them. Beginning Sunday, architecture buffs can go inside one of Clements' more low-key residential designs as the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts stages its latest design house in Pasadena. As always, design trends are on display. Twenty-five designers have transformed the 1915 English Arts and Crafts estate while retaining the home's warm spirit.
April 5, 2014 |
The real estate market has long worked on a simple system: If you want to buy a new house, sell the old one and use the equity for a down payment. But the last few years of low ownership costs and rising rents have some move-up buyers trying a new approach: Buy the new house. Keep the old one. And rent it out. Real estate firm Redfin recently asked 1,900 prospective home buyers nationwide what they planned to do with their old house when they bought a new one. As you'd expect, the majority said they would sell.