Crypto Maniacs: How Cash-Poor L.A. Millennials Are Buying Million Dollar Homes

Plus, what a house within driving range of Los Angeles’ exclusive golf clubs will run you
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According to a recent Redfin survey, almost 12 percent of all first-time home buyers reported selling cryptocurrency to make a down payment on a house, a trend that Nurit Coombe says is poised to explode in Los Angeles. “We’re seeing a growing number of these people cashing out virtual assets for starter homes that go anywhere from $1 million to $4 million,” says the managing partner at the Agency, who specializes in cryptocurrency transactions. 

While some of L.A.’s priciest homes have been purchased by crypto royalty like Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, who bought a sprawling Bel-Air estate for $133 million in December 2021, it’s the new breed of crypto-flush, cash-poor buyers that may alter the real estate landscape.  

“These are people mostly under 35 who may not even have a job or income to qualify for a loan,” Coombe says. “What they do have is tons of cash, mostly in Bitcoin or Ethereum, and suddenly that’s giving them access to an asset that’s anything but virtual.”


IN OTHER L.A. REAL ESTATE NEWS…


EXPERIENCE MAY MAKE MADONNA EVEN RICHER
> Is Madonna joining the ranks of celebrity house flippers like Ellen DeGeneres? The casual evidence suggests she’s got the moves. Last year, the pop legend dropped $19.3 million to buy The Weeknd’s colossal 12,500-square-foot Hidden Hills compound (seven bedrooms, eight baths, screening room, wine cellar). Now, the Material Girl has listed the property at $25.9 million, a tidy 34 percent profit, if she gets her price.

SOHO HOUSE WAS JUST THE BEGINNING
Can L.A. support three new private clubs? We’re about to find out
(PHOTO COURTESY SOHO HOUSE).                                                     

Not that there’s a lack of exclusivity in this town, but L.A. is getting a fresh batch of private clubs. First up, Soho House’s new WeHo branch, Holloway House—a revamp of the old Palihouse on Holloway Drive—opened in late spring with 34 hotel-style rooms and art by local artists on the walls. Meanwhile, the NeueHouse chain of haute private workspace/social clubs is opening a Venice Beach outpost this summer at 73 Market Street, where actor-producer Tony Bill established a storied artists’ collective in the ’70s. Finally, Jeff Klein, he of Sunset Tower and the mighty San Vicente Bungalows, is extending the SVB brand to Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica next year at a members-only club atop an unspecified high-rise overlooking the Pacific. Merle Ginsberg


MAY THE COURSE BE WITH YOU
What a house within driving range of L.A.’s exclusive golf clubs will run you
(REALTORS’ WEBSITES)

SANTA MONICA

HIGHLIGHTS This sprawling 1924 estate in Santa Monica Canyon is set back from San Vicente Boulevard and overlooks the Riviera Country Club. Presumably, golfers won’t mistake the ornate Spanish colonial revival design of the seven-bedroom house (plus a guest casita) for the clubhouse.
PRICE $22,000,000
CONTACT David Offer, Berkshire Hathaway, 310-820-9341

(REALTORS’ WEBSITES)

PALOS VERDES

HIGHLIGHTS This 7,465-square-foot Tuscan-inspired villa perched above the Palos Verdes Golf Club commands mountain, city, and ocean views of the entire L.A. Basin. The 7.5-bath, seven-bedroom property bristles with balconies, patios, and a pool with infinity spa, perfect for extreme entertaining.
PRICE $9,399,000
CONTACT Lily Liang, Christie’s, 310-373-3333

(REALTORS’ WEBSITES)

PASADENA

HIGHLIGHTS Take in the seventh fairway at the Annandale Golf Club from this 7,000-square-foot retreat designed by Dwight James Baum, grandson of the acclaimed architect, and William Hamilton Arthur. This marks the first time the property will change hands since its completion in 1984.
PRICE $5,900,000
CONTACT Sarah Rogers, Compass, 626-390-0511 Jennifer Ritz

This story is featured in the June 2022 issue of Los Angeles.

(Illustrated by Justin Metz)
(Illustrated by Justin Metz)

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