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Celebrity Starter Homes

Turns out they’re not just like us…

Celebrities, they’re just like us. Well, not really, especially when it comes to starter homes. For most of us, a starter home is the first, and in many cases, only home purchase we will make in our lifetimes. It is a purchase we save for and pay for entirely all our adult lives. Though for celebrities, a starter home is usually the first [of many] home purchases they will make during their lives and is usually tied to their first big break—like landing a lead role in a major blockbuster or releasing their first studio album.

Trulia took a look at homes where celebrities got their starts—whether it truly was in a home the likes of us consider a “starter” or if it was in a home that is completely drool worthy and more the likes of our dream home. We’re pretty sure most of these celebs didn’t really start from the bottom!

1999 marked the start of Jimmy Kimmel’s co-hosting gig on Comedy Central’s “The Man Show,” but perhaps more significant, it was the year he purchased his starter home in Los Angeles for $600,000. This English Tudor style home is in the highly desirable Lake Hollywood Knolls neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA and just across the freeway from the favorite celebrity Hollywood Hills neighborhood.

The 2,879 square foot home boasts four bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms, each with panoramic views of the San Fernando Valley. Two of the four bedrooms are master suites, equipped with en suite bathrooms, while a third bedroom acts as a separate guest room, perfect for out-of-town guests with its own private entrance. A private balcony off the main master bedroom makes for an ideal view at sunset.

The common areas of the home feature hardwood floors, crown moldings, beamed ceilings and upgraded doors and windows, with a custom fireplace at the heart of the living room. The kitchen offers a nod to European accents with beamed ceilings, a Viking Range and a breakfast bar. The formal dining room flaunts French doors that lead to a private patio fitted with a hot tub, patio furniture, wood-fired pizza oven and open skies just waiting to host a summer barbecue. There is also a large-sized double office and private rehearsal—a perfect place for Kimmel to write new comedy lines, run through upcoming “Saturday Night Live” skits, or maybe even host the occasional bass clarinet jam session.

Just as Kimmel moved on to hosting his own late-night show on ABC, he did so with his starter home, selling it in 2005 $1.385M. If this was the home Kimmel chose as he started his foothold in the comedy and entertainment world of Los Angeles, we are fairly certain his next home was no joke.

Images courtesy of Zillow.

Purchased in 1998, or pre-McDreamy era, for $679,000, this ultra exclusive hideaway sits just above the Hollywood landmark hotel, Chateau Marmont. Tucked away on cul-de-sac street in Hollywood Hills, a long driveway and gated entrance lead to this updated single story home with 1,707 square feet, two bedrooms and two bathrooms. The home features an open floor plan, views of Los Angeles and a pool that transports you to a tropical oasis. With a subtle nod to Mid-century style, hardwood floors and trim run throughout the home, serving as contrast to the bright walls beaming with natural light. The master suite features a large bedroom with an en suite bathroom and walk in closet—which must have been perfectly suited for the budding TV star and his makeup artist wife, Jillian.

The back patio area is situated just outside the French doors off the living room, offering the ideal spot for summer barbecues with its custom wood benches and chaise lounges situated just off the pool with attached hot tub.

Dempsey sold the home in 2002 for $982,500, prior to landing his role as the physician heartthrob on ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy,” though we think this house is just what the doctor ordered!

No need to “Curb Your Enthusiasm” on this one! Right above the famous Sunset Strip of downtown Los Angeles sits our favorite friend’s L.A. starter home, purchased in 1995 for $750,00. If you ask us, this house is the full “Monty” with 3,200 square feet, four bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms.

Originally built in 1941, the Traditional style home has been reimagined to include contemporary features like a sunlit, salt water pool and spa, an outdoor lounge area and views of the city from the master bedroom. Though redesigned to suit Schwimmer in his prime bachelor years, the home’s original flair and character have been preserved, like custom molding throughout, a large wood burning fireplace in the living room and a dramatic curved staircase leading to the second story.

The renovated kitchen is complete with a butler’s pantry, marble countertops, a six-burner Wolf range and double Sub-Zero refrigerators, leaving plenty of room to hide that leftover Thanksgiving sandwich.

Schwimmer sold the home in 2002 for $1,175,000, a move we think may have been motivated by his new relationship with Australian popstar Natalie Imbruglia, but maybe we have the “Wrong Impression.”

The queen of showbiz to own-your-own-biz hasn’t been able to part with her Beverly Hills starter home yet, so she rents it out for an honest $11,500 per month. Jessica originally bought the home in 2002 for $1.1 million when she was just a rising TV star on Dark Angel.

The 2,286 square foot, two-bedroom, two-bathroom home was built in 1980 and features Mid-Century Modern style. Naturally, Alba has stylishly decorated the home to feel cozy yet chic, with features including luxurious dark stained hardwood floors, warm marble throughout the bathrooms and a spiral metal staircase leading to a bonus room. The bonus room is on the home’s bottom floor, making it ideal for entertaining with an 80-inch flat-screen TV plus a nearby pool table and bar, while a cozy fireplace provides the perfect spot to get comfortable and take in an exquisite view of Los Angeles, CA.

Lucky for her, Alba is definitely bringing in major Cash from this rental while still keeping it in the family.

As 2016’s highest paid actress in the world, you could definitely say J-Law is at the top. Yet, when it comes to her first home in Los Angeles, the star didn’t exactly start from the bottom. Purchased in 2006 for $879,000, Lawrence’s starter home was a 1,413 square foot townhome in uber-hip Santa Monica, CA.

Built in 1981, the two-bedroom, three-bathroom townhome features a contemporary style, with light hardwood floors and recessed lighting throughout. The living room has a fireplace and large windows to let in lots of California sunshine. The dining area opens up to a private patio, a perfect hangout spot for J-Law and her comedian bestie, Amy Schumer. High, vaulted ceilings make for an open and spacious master suite with an en suite bathroom.

Lawrence finally upgraded to a Beverly Hills mansion in 2014, but waited two years to sell this starter home, ultimately to the tune of $1.15M. Looks like she knows a thing or two about the ultimate American Hustle.

Actress and model Eva Mendes, now married to Ryan Gosling, originally purchased her Hollywood starter home with her former longtime boyfriend, George Gargurevich, in 2002 for $584,000. While the former couple never get “Hitch”-ed, they certainly made a pretty penny on the home, selling it in 2014 for $1.269M ($10K more than the asking price).

Originally built in 1953, it’s the quintessential Mid-century Hollywood Hills home that looks over all of Los Angeles, aided in part by floor to ceiling glass walls and multiple sliding glass doors that lead to outdoor decks with gardens underneath boasting fruit trees, chickens, raised beds, an outdoor shower and a cedar hot tub. The three-bedroom, two-bathroom, 1,732 square foot tropical-inspired living space was remodeled by Mendes over the time she owned it to evoke the feeling of a true bohemian den.

Although Mendes wasn’t living in this home as of 2008, she kept it with her former partner until 2014, likely living in any one of the four properties she currently owns in Carpentaria, Glendale and Los Angeles.

These celebrity starter homes are far from common, but we can dream, right?