There’s truly nothing better than plopping down after a long day of work (re: online shopping) with your $14 salad and Zillow. Sure, once upon a time the concept of perusing real estate sounded like something only boring people would do. But now? Now that you’re an Adult™ with things like hip pain and a 401(k), critiquing a house you could never afford is sort of like the new going out on a Monday. It doesn’t exactly make sense, but you do it — and do it often — anyway.
This, of course, is where Betches’ Zillow House of the Month comes in. Each month we’re presenting you with the most outrageous, over-the-top, painfully pricey houses simply so you can judge the sh*t out of them. Don’t ask me why, but there’s just something exhilarating about hating on a zillion-dollar mansion that doesn’t have a detached guesthouse.
And since October is, obviously, the month of all things spooks and scares, we had to highlight a Victorian home that could easily be seen on the poster of some made-for-Netflix horror movie. From the outside, you’ve got your traditional “this place is definitely haunted” vibe. But from the inside? It’s more of a current-day, “wow I might actually get murdered here” aesthetic. It’s a hard balance to master, but we love to see a fun blend of the vintage with the modern!
Another important note: This six-bedroom/10-bath house is nestled on just under 2.5 acres of Ontario soil. But it’s not the Canadian locale that’s freaky (Come on—universal healthcare, stunning views, and low crime rates? *shudders*). It’s the fact that this C$15,000,000 Zillow listing (which goes for close to $11 million USD) has all the trappings of an American Horror Story estate, minus the ghost of Evan Peters. And since I’ll likely never be able to afford more than a studio apartment, I can’t think of a better reason to dissect every inch of this place like my life depends on it. Who knows? It just might (dun dun dunnn).
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Did you feel a chill run up your spine? Good, because one look at this house screams “do not enter.” I mean, you’re going to go in, of course, because they probably have a bomb-ass wine selection and will serve you a catered multi-course meal before they kill you.
But seriously. The gabled roof, gothic architecture, and literal spires are basically straight out of the How to Build a Haunted House handbook. Someone call Ryan Murphy, because this place looks like the perfect setting for literally any of his shows.
While we’re on the topic of the exterior house structure, let’s take a lil peek at the location. One feature that’s boasted on the listing is the fact that the home backs up to protected forest land. Scenic, right? But do you know what lives in forests? Bears. Murders. Ghouls, even, if they exist. I don’t care how nice it is that you won’t have to see your dumb neighbor mowing their yard shirtless when you look out your back window—a dark, eerie forest is pretty much equal to imminent death. I don’t make the rules! Ask Hollywood!
If you were expecting blood-red walls, dark wood floors, and coffins around every corner of this home, you couldn’t be more mistaken. Remember, the outside is giving American Horror Story while the inside is more American Psycho. I have to warn you: Pretty much every single room you’ll see is stark white, giving the place a more-than-vaguely institutional feel. I get it, some people like the modern white look. You know, like rich people or folks who need to quickly clean up crime scenes before the police arrive. Still, at least you’d look good walking down that grand staircase to meet your demise.
Before moving on, I just need to take a second to once again point out how dizzying the interior is. I never thought I’d be one to want fewer clean lines and recessed lighting, but this place reads like a fancy boutique or modern art museum that I have absolutely no reason being in.
Ah, the first pop of color and an example of what you can expect throughout the rest of the abode. Multiple sitting areas grace the estate, almost all of which include jewel-tone or white couches that you’re not expected to actually sit on, and… that’s about it. Don’t get me wrong—I’m a fan of the floor-to-ceiling windows and two-story loft design. It would just be nice if a little more personality was infused within. Give me a fresco ceiling. An oversized demon statue. Something to change up the vibe a bit.
The good news is that this house at least has a wine cellar. It’s not huge, but it’ll hold enough vino for a weekend or two, depending on whether your ex posted a picture with his new girlfriend or not. The bad news is that it looks like there’s a Bible in the wine cellar which leads me to believe exorcisms or similar ceremonies of the sort could take place here. There’s also a door with a lock, which sure, stops people from getting in and stealing your booze. But does it also stop people from, you know, getting out? SpOokYyyy!
Spotted! A white room devoid of color except for a jewel-tone cushion! Technically a part of the (for some reason not underground) basement, this sitting room looks pretty much like all of the other sitting rooms. This could be part of the plan to disorient people and trap them inside. Truthfully, I did the virtual tour, and I got lost because every way I turned looked the same. The exception, of course, is that this particular sitting room also has a wet bar which is a fun change-up as long as you don’t expect to be poured a rich glass of red while snuggling up on those white couches. This is a clear drink only household, obvi.
If you needed a closer look at the bar, you might want to think twice. Oddly enough, this is the one part of the house that doesn’t really fit the modern haunted aesthetic. Instead, the bar feels more like something you’d see at the clubhouse of your grandparents’ timeshare in Fort Myers. Somewhat uninspiring but still, it holds alcohol and has a sink to wash the blood off your hands if things get shambly, so it technically gets the job done.
It wouldn’t be a boast-worthy listing without a modern kitchen complete with a breakfast nook, breakfast bar, oversized island, and high-end appliances you’ll never use. That said, you have to give credit where credit is due. As far as ideal kitchens go, this one is pretty legit. While the endless white is jarring in the rest of the house, it definitely works here. And even though you likely won’t live to see the morning-after pancakes in this place, it sure is a nice vision!
Off the kitchen is the formal dining room which seats 17 of your closest frenemies. With the intricate coffered ceiling and lighting fixtures that seem straight out of a hotel, it could easily double as a conference room or charming space for a satanic ritual… whichever you’re feeling that day.
Behold: One of the only not-white rooms in the entire 18,000-square-foot home. Admittedly, the rooms that aren’t white seem to be mostly wood, which isn’t a huge improvement but does add a nice air of entitlement. While I’d prefer a few more bookshelves, the library is still the perfect place to nestle in with a good novel or plot ways to destroy anyone who crosses you. Between the spiral staircase and the fact that you just know there’s a candlestick in there, it all feels very 1985 Clue to me.
If reading isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other ways to entertain yourself or your victims. Heading down to the (white) game room or retreating to the (also white) home theater could be the play here. You’ll obviously want to use caution so as to not spill on the (again, white) upholstery, but if you manage to make it through the evening’s activities without smudging the sofa, perhaps things won’t end up like the hallway scene from The Shining after all!
It wouldn’t be a Patrick Bateman-worthy estate without a space to maintain your “rigorous exercise routine.” The—you guessed it—white fitness center is located in the basement and is as crisp and sterile as you’d expect from a celebrity-style gym. After working on your core and doing 1,000 stomach crunches, you can head to the sauna to sweat out any remaining toxins or simply destress (despite the fact that you live better than 99% of the world).
Last but not least, we have to highlight the bedrooms. Truthfully, it’s hard to tell them apart since all of them are white with wood floors and blinding natural light. The only way to determine that this one is (probably) the master is thanks to the modern fireplace, balcony access, and sitting room complete with *sigh* a jewel-toned lounge set. On the plus side, it seems most of the bedrooms have walk-in closets and ensuite baths. Would I consider living in a clearly soon-to-be haunted house if it meant more closet space? Abso-f*cking-lutely.
And the final stop on our tour is in the master bath. In here you can find his and hers sinks, a detached waterfall shower, and this soaking tub that looks like a scene from basically every horror movie ever. The white all around, the picture window, and the tile design all point to one thing: This is not a tub you’ll make it out of. Is it because you’re so relaxed or because Joe Goldberg popped in to pay you a visit? That’s one secret I’ll never tell.
All in all, this house is, naturally, a piece of art. Yes, it looks like a place someone remodeled to hide the fact that generations of ghosts hang out here, but it’s got a resort-style swimming pool, multiple balconies, and just look at that sunset! That’s one view I’d, personally, die for.
Images: Zillow (16)
It seems to happen in the blink of an eye: One minute we’re staying out until 3 a.m. on a Wednesday and the next we’re Zillowing houses we could never afford and critiquing their floor plans. I’m not sure what it is, but there’s just something thrilling about hating on a multi-million dollar mansion that doesn’t have a wine cellar. And to provide you with ample real estate ammo, we’re rounding up a new house each month for your perusing pleasure. From sprawling estates to compounds that rival the Kennedys’, behold… Betches’ Zillow House of the Month.
September’s selection is, truthfully, going to be hard to detest, but we wanted to give you an idea of the “houses” we’re showcasing. We’re not looking at the four-bed/three-bath suburban nightmare that 95% of us are going to end up in (myself included). We’re talking about the places where a full staff and Moira Rose accent are required, and first up is this casual $87,000,000 Zillow listing. If you got a little lightheaded counting those zeros, I can confirm: This is an eight-bedroom/14-bath house that’s going for almost 90 million dollars.
Honestly, I was immediately drawn in because this place gives major Bridgerton vibes with its vaulted ceilings, manicured gardens, and seemingly endless sitting rooms (complete with fainting couches, of course). I mean, the 21,800 square-foot Beverly Hills mansion could comfortably fit about 21 of my own houses, which is reason enough for me to dissect it in the extreme, borderline obsessive detail of someone who will actually put in an offer. Shall we?
First things first, the curb appeal on this manor is out of control — except not really because it’s gated atop a literal promontory (see: a point of high land). All that’s missing is a dragon to guard the place and you’re set on the untouchable front. And truthfully, the 3-story, European-style estate pretty much rivals any regency-era palace thanks to its 90210 zip and celebrity neighbors. Plus, there’s a theater, a spa, and a ballroom! Clyvedon Castle could never.
While granted, the idea of hitting balls outside sounds miserable, nothing says “I’m rich, and I like to do rich person things” like having your very own tennis court. Besides, tennis outfits are cute and overpriced, so it totally fits the aesthetic. Other rich people things your admirers will notice before even entering the main house? A koi pond, a putting green, multiple gardens, and 360-degree views of L.A.
It’s giving Gatsby. It’s giving Titanic. It’s giving a place Leo DiCaprio would frequent (as long as there are a few 25-year-olds in attendance as well). The entrance foyer’s imperial staircase—a term I just Googled that means a staircase with divided flights—was made for putting the attention on you. Just imagine cascading down these bad boys during a party, a PTO meeting, or to pick up your Uber Eats. It’s a narcissist’s dream, and I, for one, am entirely here for it.
It wouldn’t be a proper palace without “look but don’t touch rooms,” and the good news is you have plenty of options to choose from here. Will you perch on the edge of an uncomfortable-looking chair as you wait for your suiters? Or perhaps at the piano, where you’ll attempt to plunk out the notes to “Heart and Soul” which you swear you know thanks to the three months of lessons you took when you were eight. And they said old-world sophistication was dead. Not here, not today!
Even though this place has a billiards room, an oversized home gym, and a wine cellar that looks like “the storefront of an early 18th century English saloon” (whatever that means?), my favorite room has to be the library. Just look at it in all its stained glass, two-story, spiral staircase glory! It’s simply the perfect place to curl up amongst the books and scroll on your phone.
It’s hard to fully judge this bar from the photo, but for some reason, it’s the first feature that just doesn’t sit well with me. The vanity lights and mirrored walls feel a bit too Vegas for such a dignified space, and the odd placement between the open doorway and the French doors seems haphazardly thrown together. Also, where are the chairs? I’ve just spent $87 million on a house. There’s no way I’m about to stand like a peasant while waiting for a drink, thank you very much.
Another area of disappointment and disbelief lands us in the “chef’s kitchen.” Admittedly, I do see at least two ovens, two refrigerators, and a wine fridge, but all of it falls a little flat. I’m expecting a Master Chef setup with Gordon Ramsay on staff and TBH, this just feels underwhelming. Even though there’s a center island and (oddly unpictured) pantry, it simply doesn’t scream “I could proudly host the Obamas for a catered-quality meal” here. Plus, the wood cabinetry? The clear doors on the shelves? The framed photos lining the top? Woof.
Luckily the kitchen is redeemed by one of the most impressive formal dining rooms I’ve ever seen. Like, hi, does Chuck Bass live here? Finally, you can sit at one end of the table while your partner sits at the other and shout across the room like the true royals you are. Yes, it has an ornate chandelier. Yes, it has Venetian stained glass. And yes, it will make every single person jealous as you (AKA your staff) serve them delicacies like chilled soup and raw steak. Bon appétit, b*thes.
If the 12-person dining room feels a bit much for breakfast with your, ahem, overnight guests, the nook just off the kitchen is light, bright, and still feels completely over-the-top in a slightly more intimate way. The garden theme could be either tacky or cute, but I’m going with cute because the cottage-y chandelier and floral detailing somehow work for me. Just be careful about any makeup residue from last night—all that natural lighting looks rather unforgiving.
If you noticed the little bridge leading from the kitchen nook, you’ll be happy to know there’s another adorable dining option for your more casual meals: an al fresco, mote-surrounded space you have to access via footbridge. This is just one of the multiple outdoor spaces for eating and/or having sex in the rain while an instrumental version of Taylor Swift’s “Wildest Dreams” plays in the background, but aesthetic-wise, it really slaps.
Ready to be confused again? Allow me to present the master bedroom. In fairness to the space, I think this is just a really bad angle, but it begs the question: Is the room weird or should the photographer be fired? Hard to say, but we need another vantage point to understand what we’re working with.
Luckily, there is one other view of the master which makes the room look completely different. I had to switch between both images and play a frustrating version of “I Spy” to make sure I was talking about the same space, but at least this view gives a better idea of the size and detail. The blue coffered ceiling and large sitting area are actually really inviting, and the fact that the room has multiple private terraces, his and hers closets, and a massage room(!) makes me feel like it’s a liveable situation, even if you secretly detest your spouse (as I assume most rich people do?).
This is, suspiciously, the only bathroom photo (out of 14 full baths!) posted to Zillow. I’ll let it slide, though, due to the sheer fact that the bath-to-beds ratio of this house is almost double. Double! This means even if you share a room and ensuite bath with your significant other, you never have to worry about someone being in the bathroom when you need it or worse, stinking up a shared space because you have so! many! other! options! While I’d love to make sure all the bathrooms at least have separate showers, dual sinks, and spacious vanities, I’ll settle for the fact that I can, at least, soak in this antique-style tub while staring over the city where dreams go to die.
One especially great perk of this house is the fact that you don’t *have* to let your guests sleep in the main house. I mean, how embarrassing would it be to bump into some random overnighter while you’re in the kitchen, demanding the chef make you a late-night snack? While there aren’t many pictures of the detached guest house, this view gives an idea of just how many people you can host if your black tie galas run a little long. Also, if your guests get bored, they channel their inner Beth Harmon with a lively round of yard chess. It’s called hospitality, look it up.
One of the last views of the house is of the pool, and for a Beverly Hills situation, I’m slightly disappointed. Don’t get me wrong, the fountain concept is sort of fun, and the shape is different, but this is the land of sunshine and water-side lounging. Considering this fortress is all about luxury, couldn’t we get a more unique aquatic space? Let’s see a waterfall! A lazy river! An infinity pool or a small-scale waterpark at least. Also, what’s up with the dolphins? All that squirting feels a bit aggressive, no?
After spending far too long critiquing the space, even I have to admit that this humble abode is actually pretty solid. From the unnecessary number of balconies to the fact that this house could basically host the entire cast of 90210, it’s a great jumping-off point. With a bit of remodeling and a flirty friendship with one of your celebrity neighbors, it just might be what you’ve been looking for. In-person tours are happening now, so put on your family jewels and pop on over—we’ve got a house to buy.
Images: Zillow (16)
It’s been two years since Arie Luyendyk graced our TV screens as the most boring Bachelor in history, and I have to say, I don’t really miss him. Watching Arie and Lauren fall in love (sorry, Becca) was arguably less exciting than watching paint dry, but hey, it seems like things are really working out for them. I love that. Two years after meeting on the show, they’re married, they have a daughter together, and now, the first house that they’re flipping together is officially on the market. Luckily, someone posted the Zillow listing in a Facebook group I’m in, and boy is it something.
I’m no real estate expert, and after perusing the listing, I have several questions. First, let’s go over some of the details. Arie and Lauren bought the old house in February of last year, and did a complete tear-down and new build. The new house has four bedrooms/three bathrooms, and is almost 3,000 square feet, which by my calculations is *looks around* definitely bigger than my apartment. Great, sounds like a normal suburban house. Arie is listed right there on Zillow as the listing agent, so it’s good to see he hasn’t let his Bachelor fame get in the way of his actual career.
The thing that immediately caught my attention is the asking price: $915,000. For those of us that are numerically challenged, that’s almost a million dollars! It sounded high to me, so I did a little digging. Arie and Lauren bought the old house on the lot for $298,500 in early 2019. Then, the new house was listed yesterday for $950,000. According to Zillow’s calculations, that’s a price increase of over 200%. Damn, do I need to get into flipping houses? Probably. Do I have the skills? Definitely not. Strangely, in less than a full day of being on the market, the price on the house has already been lowered by $35k, which seems like an odd strategy? Maybe this is a common tactic that I’m unaware of, but I’m gonna choose to think that Arie just made a typo when putting in the price.
Zillow also has a feature called the “Zestimate,” where it tells you the estimated actual value of a house. When I first saw the listing last night, the Zestimate on this house was a whopping $600k lower than the list price, but now it’s been updated to just over $900k, so I’m guessing that was just a lag on the new listing. In fact, the Zestimate has continued to go up in the last hour or so, which is interesting. But what’s really interesting is that the average value of a home in this neighborhood of Phoenix is around $360k. That’s a huuuuuge difference from Arie and Lauren’s just-shy-of-a-million asking price, and it makes me wonder why they built such a nice house in this neighborhood? My mom always told me that you never want to have the most expensive house in the neighborhood because it hurts your property value, and it looks like that’s exactly what these two have done. Oh well, not my problem.
Now that I’ve done enough research to earn my real estate license, let’s talk sh*t about the house itself, because I know that’s why we’re all here. From a first glance at the outside, it looks like Arie and Lauren stuck to the Vanderpump Rules architectural style of “off-white house with big black garage door,” and is anyone surprised? I’m not sure about those unpainted wooden beams surrounding the front door, but I guess the rustic wood offsets the feeling that your house looks like you saw it in a catalog and said “I love that” (sorry, I’ll stop).
Moving inside the front door, you’re immediately greeted by an open-concept kitchen. And by immediately, I mean that the stove is literally no more than six feet from the front door. Is this a thing? I will say, the kitchen looks beautiful. But all the photos are taken with that weird wide lens that’s supposed to make everything look bigger, and it leads to some sketchy Kylie Jenner Facetune issues. Like, the kitchen island looks like it’s straight out of an MC Escher drawing, and I can’t tell how big anything is.
In the initial post I saw about the house, one thing that many people called out is the lack of staging in these photos. And I have to agree, some furniture would have helped. In photo after photo, we just see these big, empty rooms, but due to the weird fish-eye perspective, it’s really hard to get a handle on how big anything is. I’m sure staging takes a lot of time and money, but still, it would be helpful to know what size bed I could fit in each room, for instance.
But all of these complaints about the layout and the lack of staging absolutely pale in comparison to what I’m about to show you. Brace yourself, because this is really upsetting.
Behold, the hall bathroom:
WHAT. THE. F*CK. Oh my god, I’m gonna be sick. And I say that because the tile looks like some kind of bacterial infection that’s rapidly spreading into the hallway. I’m gonna keep checking the Zillow listing, because by this time tomorrow, it might take over the whole house! Who can stop the tile???
But actually, who made this design decision? Joanna Gaines would never. Like, did they get 90% of the way through laying the floors in the hallway and run out of wood? Honestly, that’s the only explanation I can think of, because this is gonna look so weird when the bathroom door is closed. Also, the edge of the wall where it meets the floor looks… kind of sloppy? For that asking price, I would expect all details to be flawless. I’m sure whoever buys this house will love it, but it’s not the one for me, and not just because I will never have $900,000.
If you’re in the Phoenix area, there’s an open house tomorrow, and I’m literally begging you to go inspect and report back. Does the house actually look nice? Can you figure out why this tile situation happened? Is Arie going to follow you around the house while you cry in every room? I have never needed answers more. Good luck to Arie and Lauren, and maybe if they’re lucky, they’ll get an HGTV show out of this.
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Images: Zillow (4)