“People think I have a lot of cash. I actually don’t,” billionaire Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk told a packed Los Angeles federal courtroom last week.
If the electric car titan has been a bit thin lately, it may be because of a quietly amassed cluster of six Bel-Air properties unearthed by The Wall Street Journal earlier this week. In total, the real estate deals have set Musk back around $100 million.
Musk’s first big-ticket purchase came in 2012, when he bought a 20,248-square-foot mansion with views of the Bel-Air Country Club for $17 million. The embowered seven-bedroom estate includes a tennis court, a spa, and five garages—presumably enough to fit a single Tesla cyber truck. It also holds an 1,000-bottle wine cellar and a two-story library.
Less than a year later, Musk made moves to expand his Bel-Air fiefdom, putting down $6.75 million for a comparatively modest three bedroom ranch house just across the street. The 2,756-square-foot property, once owned by actor Gene Wilder, served as the private school for his five sons (a set of twins and triplets), according to the WSJ.
Musk continued his buying spree on Chalon Road with a $20 million, 7,026-square-foot house with six bedrooms and eight bathrooms. Like all of his homes, it was bought through an LLC.
Then, starting in 2015, Musk’s spending moved to an adjacent street down the hill, Somera Road, where five houses sit at the end of a cul-de-sac. Over the next four years, LLCs linked to Musk have bought three of the five homes, leading to speculation that he may be seeking to own the whole cul-de-sac.
Duck Duck Goose, an LLC tied to Musk, paid $4.3 million for a 2,963-square-foot Mid-century modern four bedroom—10 percent over the asking price. When the WSJ visited the property, reporters found it “unkempt,” with dead plants and large bins of garbage outside. While no one appeared to live there full-time according to neighbors, the house was illuminated by pink lights for Valentine’s Day.
A year later, Musk expanded his footprint in the cul-de-sac with the $24.25 million purchase of a 9,309-square-foot contemporary home built in 2011.
The most recently (although likely not the last) transaction came early this year, when an LLC sharing an address with SpaceX’s headquarters put down $6.4 million for an idyllic white Colonial in the Somera Road cul-de-sac. This last investment doesn’t seem to have aged as well for Musk, though. Its value has sunk to $4.2 million, according to Zillow.
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