J Lo and Marc Anthony: Will They Sell Their Houses?
Whenever there is an announcement of celebrities about to divorce, the real estate sharks start circling the bloody waters. While fans are busy wondering who cheated on whom and what happens to the kids, there is a whole cadre of agents figuring out neighborhood comps and when best to strike to land the listing.
Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony's announcement this week that they were moving to Splitsville likely is no exception. The pair own three houses -- one in the Los Angeles suburb of Hidden Hills and the other two in Glen Head, N.Y. -- and smart money says we can expect one if not all of those homes to hit the market before the final divorce ink is dry.
It's just the way it is; liquidation of assets to split up are part of the divorce landscape. It's why Mel Gibson's familial home, Lavender Hill in Malibu, is on the market and it's why everyone has been expecting Kelsey Grammer to list one or more of his multiple homes.
Celebrities, of course, aren't the only ones to be pushed into selling their houses when they divorce. It happens to everyone. Any time there is a major life change -- the death of a breadwinner, the last child to leave for college, the loss of a job -- one of the first things to happen is a discussion about selling the old homestead.
In fact, trying to avoid having to sell the house in this market has actually led to more couples staying together -- not for the kids, but for the house. A new study by the American Economic Review confirms what we already knew: The divorce rate fell to 46 percent in 2009 from 50 percent in 1996 -- which correlates with a decrease in home values.
AER says couples are more likely to divorce when equity gains make it possible for them to put money down on separate homes, so more people are putting up with one another rather than splitting apart.
Whether J Lo and Anthony's homes will show up soon in the MLS remains to be seen. But here's the 411 on the houses:
Hidden Hills is a freeway-adjacent gated equestrian compound in the San Fernando Valley. J Lo's 17,129-square-foot house has nine bedrooms and was purchased in January 2010 for $8,500,000. (Veranda magazine offered a peek at it earlier this year.) The Hidden Hills market has been relatively stable over the past year, but sales prices have depreciated by 29.6 percent over the last five years, according to Trulia.
The estate in Glen Head (a New York City suburb on Long Island) was featured in Vogue Living magazine, which spotlighted the nursery that Lopez designed for her twins. Lopez-Anthony also bought the five-bedroom Colonial that sits adjacent to this property, fueling speculation that Lopez's mother was moving in.
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