Celebs Who Couldn't Afford Their Extravagant Homes

Most of us can't imagine netting millions of dollars per year, let alone spending so much of it that we find ourselves filing for bankruptcy. However, many celebrities, including Michael Jackson, Pamela Anderson, Mike Tyson, and Courtney Love have done just that, according to Walker & Walker. Indeed, some celebrities have found themselves attracted (a little too much) to lavish homes, stunning cars, and other luxuries like personal trainers, designer clothes, personal chefs, and more. Plus, very few famous folks have careers that span their entire lives; more often than not, the green eventually runs out, leaving these celebrities with slews of expenses they can no longer afford.

Of course, a home — especially if it costs millions of dollars — is often at the top of any person's list of expenses. But if a celebrity's checks stop coming in, banks often waste no time coming for what they are owed, just as they would for any "average" person. When that happens, foreclosure and an auction block are never far behind. To that end, these celebs had the unfortunate fate of losing their own homes, which were often outfitted with personal effects and luxurious details, to foreclosure and sums that amounted to far less than the homes were ever worth.

Kate Gosselin sold her Pennsylvania mansion for $200K less than the asking price

There was a time when "Jon & Kate Plus 8" was a TLC must-watch — attracting almost 10 million viewers at its final premiere, reported The New York Times – making it one of the largest audiences that a TLC show has ever garnered. However, all good things must come to an end. Although during the show's heights Jon and Kate lived in a stunning Pennsylvania mansion and vacationed in Hawaii, thanks to the $25,000 to $50,000 they were paid per episode, per The Balance (via The Sun), things changed for Kate during the couple's expensive divorce and after the cancellation of one-season "Kate Plus Date."

Kate sold her 6,200-square-foot Pennsylvania home in 2021 for $1.1 million, which is $214,000 less than the initial asking price, said In Touch Weekly. According to a source quoted in The Sun, "Kate has been struggling with money because she hasn't worked for a while. She has been living off the money she made in the past but it's been years since her last job. She is a trained nurse but hasn't been applying for nursing jobs. She just doesn't see herself as a nurse anymore." 

That lack of steady income and big divorce lawyer bills have caused many of Kate's money woes. Celebrity Net Worth said that she's worth about $500,000 now, which is only a fraction of the $2.4 million she earned while on "Jon and Kate Plus 8."

Michael Vick lost his Atlanta home after his dogfighting case

The 2000s were about as kind to former football quarterback Michael Vick as allegedly he was to the 70 dogs found on his property in 2007 that had been used in dogfighting. Near the end of his two-year jail sentence in 2009 for his role in funding a dogfighting ring, Vick's gated Atlanta lakefront home went up for auction in attempts to satisfy his enormous debts, reported ESPN. Vick lived there for just two years after buying it two years prior to that and while there, he implemented personal touches like an indoor golf simulator, a custom bar, and workout room. But by the time it hit the auction block, the only personal touch that remained was a carpet decorated with the number "7" — Vick's uniform number.

However, there was a somewhat happy ending to the sad saga: Vick's other home in Virginia (where the actual dogfighting took place) and its 15 acre property were purchased in 2011 by animal rights group Dogs Deserve Better, which turned it into a rehabilitation center for dogs who had been chained or penned their whole lives, according to ABC News. Dogs Deserve Better purchased the estate for $600,000, partly thanks to a 30% down payment raised through donations; they then raised further funds to install fencing and a brick-and-mortar dog facility, as the house itself was used for offices.

Stephen Baldwin's New York cottage sold at auction for $100

Stephen Baldwin has acted in, produced, and directed big-name productions including "The Usual Suspects" and "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas." However, his famous name or his varied career, which also includes several reality TV shows, wasn't enough to keep him afloat. His New York home was auctioned off in 2017 after he owed the bank more than $800,000, which amounts to almost the entire loan he had taken out to buy it, according to the Daily Mail.

Baldwin bought the four-bedroom white and green cottage at 71 Old Mountain Road South in Upper Grandview for $812,500 in 2000. But 13 years later, Deutsche Bank came after him in court when he defaulted on the $7,000 per month mortgage, said Page Six. The home had Hudson River views and a charming façade, but unfortunately for Baldwin, it sold at auction for only $100. That meant that he still owed the bank $1.1 million due to interest. But even that wasn't the start or end of Baldwin's financial woes; in 2012, he was also charged with failing to file his state tax returns for several years, which amounted to $300,000 in back taxes and five years of probation, continued the Daily Mail.

Kristen Bell's Los Angeles estate was foreclosed on just three years after a magazine feature

We fans think of Kristen Bell's sunny smile in comedies like "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," "Bad Moms," and "Couples Retreat." However, that smile likely couldn't be found much in 2012 when Bell's Studio City home in Los Angeles, which she bought for $3.1 million on 2.5 acres six years prior, was foreclosed on, reported Variety. Just three years earlier, the home was photographed by InStyle, which said it was a 5,500-square-foot Mediterranean-style home surrounded by a property lush with lavender, bougainvillea, and jasmine. Los Angeles decorator Stacey Vuduris had been hired by Bell to give the space, built in 1969, new life.

However, the petite blonde bombshell certainly wasn't homeless following the foreclosure. According to E! News, Bell had moved out of the mansion before the sale and had been living with then-fiancé Dax Shepard at his three-bedroom Los Feliz ranch; he purchased the property in 2005 for $1.3 million, which is tucked behind high hedges and a double gate, continued Variety. In the meantime, though, Bell's Studio City home fell into disrepair as its gardens became overgrown and pool unkept.

R. Kelly's Illinois mansion, once valued for over $5 million, was foreclosed on

The chickens finally came home to roost in 2021 for singer, songwriter, and producer R. Kelly. He was handed a racketeering and sex trafficking conviction, granting him ten years to life in prison, following accusations by multiple women through three decades. However, prior to that in 2013, Kelly's 22,000-square-foot Illinois estate, where several of these women can vividly remember their abuser, was foreclosed on after selling at auction for $950,000, reported NBC News. It was a devastating blow for Kelly and his once-grand gated home, which boasted a jungle-themed swimming pool and a private theater, that was just 30 miles outside of Chicago and had once been valued at more than $5 million.

Two years before that, the $2.9 million foreclosure suit was filed against Kelly, claiming he hadn't made mortgage payments for about a year. After that, Kelly put the home on the market as a short sale, first trying for $1.6 million and then, later, $995,000. He finally gave up in light of other financial troubles, including more than $5 million in unpaid taxes.

Burt Reynolds' Florida mansion was taken by the bank after years of money problems

Things weren't going well for legendary actor, producer, and director Burt Reynolds before his 2018 death when he was 82 years old. Just seven years prior to the star's passing, Merrill Lynch claimed that he hadn't made a payment on his Florida estate on the Hobe Sound for more than a decade, after he purchased it in 1980 with his then-wife actress Loni Anderson. According to a suit obtained by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel (via ABC News) Reynolds owed Merrill Lynch $1.2 million. The Mediterranean-style home on four acres of property was worth $2.4 million at the time and had and a swimming pool, cinema, boat dock, and even its own private beach and private hair salon. But unfortunately, those millions were only a smidgen of what Reynolds had hoped to sell the home for when he put it on the market in 2009 for nearly $9 million (no buyers came to fruition).

A foreclosed home was just one of Reynolds' money problems in the years leading up to his death; Reynolds filed for bankruptcy in 1996 after a rough divorce from Anderson, as well as after investments in a local restaurant group didn't go the way he had hoped. He was also sued by his ex-girlfriend, and eventually settled that case out-of-court. Plus, through the late 2000s, Reynolds also owed California $225,000 in taxes which dated back to the time of his bankruptcy filing.

Warren Sapp's Florida mansion sold at auction, along with 200 pairs of Nikes

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Warren Sapp once garnered $77 million from the NFL, but those earnings couldn't save him from a 2012 bankruptcy filing that claimed all he had left was $1,000 and nearly $7 million in debt, according to Yahoo!. As a result, his 10,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style Windermere, Florida mansion hit the auction block and eventually sold for $2.9 million. It may sound like a good chunk of change for a celebrity home, but in actuality, the home, featuring a stunning pool, water slide, lazy river, four bedrooms, and six bathrooms, was once valued at more than $7 million. Additionally, the house wasn't even the only one of Sapp's possessions he had to bid goodbye to; in attempts to repay his debts, the ex-football star also attempted to auction off more than 200 pairs of Nike sneakers and a boxing glove signed by Muhammed Ali.

With its luxe details, it's tough to imagine Sapp parting with the estate. It featured celebrity-worthy touches like hand-painted gold leaf crown moldings, Venetian plaster finishes, a plethora of marble details, a wine cellar, home gym, and home theater, said Realtor.com (via HuffPost). Outside, in addition to the amazing pool, there was also an outdoor kitchen and front-row views of Lake Butler along with a dock, jet ski lifts, and a boatlift.

Nicholas Cage lost several properties to the bank

In the early 2000s, it seemed like actor Nicholas Cage was the star of every major blockbuster. In 2013, he was even named by Forbes as the fifth highest-paid actor in the country with earnings of $40 million, reported the Los Angeles Times. But around that same time, a slew of Cage's homes hit the auction block. It all happened on the heels of accusations that Cage's business manager took $20 million from the actor over a decade, which was detailed in a California lawsuit, according to CNN Money. The lawsuit said that the business manager "lined his pockets with several million dollars in business management fees while leading Cage down a path toward financial ruin."

But regardless of whose fault it was, Cage undoubtedly bore the brunt of the disaster as two of his New Orleans homes worth a total of $6.8 million were auctioned off in 2009. CNN Money said that Cage owed more than $150,000 in real estate taxes as well as $5.5 million in mortgage payments. Cage also faced the same problem in California. Five years after the auctioning of his New Orleans homes, his 12,000-square-foot Bel-Air Tudor mansion with a tower, custom wine cellar, home theater, Olympic-sized pool, and six bedrooms also went up for auction. It sold in less than a minute for $10.4 million, reported the Los Angeles Times, which is less than a third of what Cage had tried to sell the house for.

Allen Iverson lost two mansions within two years

Ex-basketball star Allen Iverson has a long list with accolades, including being inducted into the Hall of Fame, being named an NBA All-Star 11 times, and winning two All-Star game MVP awards. But on a more personal note, things weren't going so well for Iverson in 2013. His 10,000-square-foot Atlanta home sold at auction for $2.5 million that year, reported TMZ, which was only half of what he paid for it when he built it four years prior. It included stunning details like a gourmet kitchen, master suite, and custom bar, said Yahoo!.

However, that wasn't even the first time Iverson had to bid farewell to a beautiful property. Two years before that, his six-bedroom mansion in Denver also went up for auction; however, luckily for Iverson, a buyer was found and Iverson netted just about the $2.85 asking price, according to the Denver Post. He had only owned the property for about three years, which had a star-worthy security system, a chef's kitchen, seven gas fireplaces, and lake views, for nearly $3.9 million. It was all on the heels of reports of Iverson's marital issues (he and his wife later divorced), a reported gambling addiction, and reports of alcohol abuse, said the Philadelphia Inquirer (via ESPN.)

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Chamillionaire said he gave his Houston home back to the bank on purpose

Rapper Chamillionaire stopped making payments on his 7,500-square-foot Houston, Texas mansion which eventually led to its 2010 foreclosure; however, according to him, it was actually a business decision. Chamillionaire told TMZ, "This house actually was my most expensive mortgage. And I decided to let that house go because the house ended up being worth nothing. When the market went down, the house went down too and it was just worth nothing. I felt like I didn't want to pay that much money a month for a house that I'm never at."

In 2006, Chamillionaire bought the $2.2 million mansion, reported Swamplot, which featured five bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, an ideal location on a corner lot that was more than an acre, a stunning pool, neutral colors, a chef's kitchen with an island, multiple fireplaces, and a Spanish style façade. It sold at auction for $1.8 million, which was $325,000 less than what Chamillionaire had paid for it.

Evander Holyfield's colossal Georgia estate was foreclosed on in 2013

Four-time heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield seemed to reflect his $230 million in earnings with his Georgia home, thanks to its confident address (794 Evander Holyfield Highway), 109 rooms, a 135-seat private theater, nearly 45,000 square feet, and 105-acre property, reported The New York Times. It also had a horse barn with seven stalls, what had been deemed as one of the country's largest home swimming pools, a boxing gym (of course), and a bowling alley. The estate even had a separate, onsite 4,000-square-foot home where one of Holyfield's ex-wives lived.

But Holyfield's glory of owning what was the state's largest single-family home didn't last forever. In 2013, it went into foreclosure and sold for $7.5 million after he built the estate and lived there for nearly two decades. That was only half of what Holyfield actually owed the bank, said TMZ, in addition to over $200,000 in back taxes. 

The location of one of Tyler Perry's films, a children's camp, and an annual Fourth of July barbecue and fireworks display came at a huge cost to Holyfield. He once said that the property cost him $1 million to keep up, and the holiday light costs alone amounted to $16,000 in a single year.

Mike Tyson's foreclosed mansion was turned into a church

Through the 1980s, former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson was nothing short of a legend as he went on to win almost 90% of all of the matches he ever fought. Of course, celebrity and money followed the wins, which soon led Tyson to buy a 13,500-square-foot mansion in Southington, Ohio. The property included five bedrooms, two kitchens, an enormous pool, and even three cages for his Bengal tigers, reported the Vintage News. However, just a few years later, it all came crashing down for Tyson, when he spent three years in prison after 1992 sexual assault charges. Then, shortly after, he also lost his moneymaker, his boxing license, after biting opponent, Evander Holyfield.

After more assault charges and a year-long prison sentence, Tyson declared bankruptcy in 2003 and was forced to sell the mansion to an entrepreneur. After several more years of various owners and years of abandonment, the once-lavish mansion was converted into a church called the Living World Sanctuary, reported the Sun.

Erin Moran's California home was foreclosed on

It's been a long time since Erin Moran's "Happy Days," when she played Joanie Cunningham in the 1970s sitcom. Unfortunately, her finances reflected that in 2010 when her Palmdale, California house went into foreclosure after owing the bank $315,000, according to TMZ. It then sold for only about $290,000 and to make matters worse, she was evicted after refusing to leave her former abode. Things plummeted for Moran after that; she and her husband reportedly moved into her mother-in-law's trailer to act as caregivers, but it was a short-lived move. 

According to HuffPost, the married couple was reportedly kicked out of the trailer by 2012, and a slew of other sightings of the two partying and causing disturbances ensued soon after. Moran sadly passed away about seven years later at the untimely age of only 56 years old from complications of stage 4 cancer, reported Global News.