Famous Celebrities Who Live in Modest Homes
Considering the average worth of a typical celebrity, it’s hard to believe that some of the most famous stars skip all the luxury and choose to live in modest homes. Obviously, a life of pure decadence isn’t for everyone, and that’s a good thing. After all, a warm, cozy den sounds a lot more appealing than a marble-drenched conservatory.
Some of our favorite big-time celebrities have chosen — at least for a time in their lives — to live simpler lives in humble abodes that are well below their means. Think you can guess who made the cut as a down-to-earth superstar? Take a look!
Tucked into the West Village of Manhattan is Hilary Swank's modest 1,400 square foot condo. The wall-sized windows feature gorgeous views of the Hudson River, Freedom Tower and the Empire State Building that make up for what the apartment lacks in space.
Blake Lively & Ryan Reynolds
Together, Hollywood power couple Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds are worth around $90 million, but that doesn't mean they choose to throw away millions on needless luxuries. Located about 40 miles outside of New York City, their home is pretty small in relation to their massive fortune. It's only 4,753 square feet.
Matthew McConaughey may own several homes around the world, but the one he chooses to live in most of the time is the most modest of them all: an Airstream trailer! Sometimes, despite all the fame and fortune, a person really just craves the simple things in life.
Keira Knightley and her husband, James Righton, live in a very family-friendly home in central London. It makes sense that they would want something suitable for the two children they have together, of course. While the home has four floors, the square footage only comes in at 2,775, making it fairly small for someone of Knightley's status and wealth.
Tobey Maguire isn’t huge on material possessions. Even though he has made a killing as an actor, particularly after starring in three Spider-Man movies, he doesn't have an overly gigantic house. Of course, it cost him $6.9 million because of the location, but it's only 3,500 square feet with four bedrooms. That’s modest for movie-star standards.
A house in the Hollywood Hills is never cheap, even if it's not very big. Robert Pattinson lives in a rustic, beautiful, small home that cost him more than $2 million, despite the cozy size. It's a single story and styled like a hacienda, boasting two bedrooms and two bathrooms.
Avengers actor Don Cheadle and his long-time partner, interior designer Bridgid Coulter, have made a small name for themselves in the real estate industry. It seems they like to buy small houses and remodel them into eco-friendly dwellings before selling them again. Most recently, the couple purchased a 1950’s bungalow in Venice, California.
Christina Ricci's house is cute, cozy and much smaller than her fortune would allow her to own. Apparently, she prefers to spend her wealth on other things, or she simply isn’t into throwing her money around the way someone worth $18 million might be expected to do.
Before John Krasinski upgraded to his Hollywood Hills masterpiece home, he used to live in a more modest home than most celebrities. He had a bachelor pad that was nearly devoid of furniture, with only two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Now that he's married to actress Emily Blunt and has started a family, he rightfully expanded his horizons.
Warren Buffett is one of the richest men in the world with a net worth of $87.3 billion. Knowing that makes his more-than-modest home in Omaha, Nebraska, especially shocking. He initially bought it in 1958 for just $38,000. Today, it's worth so much more — about $250,000.
Up until 2014, Jennifer Lawrence lived in a home that was much less expensive than she could afford, given her success and fat paychecks for The Hunger Games series. It was worth less than $900,000 and was reportedly pretty basic and minimal on the inside. Given that she is known for living rather modestly in general, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise.
When the HBO hit series Girls launched, creator Lena Dunham still lived in a one-bedroom apartment, just like any average person. In the end, she sold the tiny apartment — originally purchased for $500,000 — for $2.9 million. Talk about making a killing! Of course, she has gone on to bigger and better accommodations since then, but nothing too lofty for her modest taste.
Not all billionaires want to live in billionaire-style houses, as it turns out. Although Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is ridiculously rich with a net worth of roughly $68.2 billion, his home in Palo Alto, California, only set him back $7 million.
Zooey Deschanel is famous and beautiful and could easily afford to live in the utmost luxury. Instead, she has chosen to live in a more humble abode in Manhattan Beach, which still set her back $5.58 million. Despite the cost, the home is notably understated and simple.
Rosie O’Donnell has several homes, although her most modest one lies along the Hudson River. From the outside, it's far from spectacular, but that doesn't mean the inside isn't full of luxury. After all, luxury comes in many forms and has many different looks. In O’Donnell's case, the look of her Hudson River home comes across as cozy, rather than opulent.
Although she has toned it down, Kesha once had a reputation for being a wild child always looking for the next party. It's kind of surprising that she chose to live in a very understated bungalow in Venice Beach with a particularly zen appeal. The modest home only cost her $1.6 million when she could have afforded so much more.
Sarah Michelle Gellar
It’s likely that Sarah Michelle Gellar's difficult childhood led her to live as frugally as she does now, despite the fact that she's a famous and wealthy celebrity with no more financial worries. She remains a person who uses coupons and shops on reward days, and her home is a reflection of this side of her.
Actor Elijah Wood, particularly known for his role in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, is worth around $30 million. Someone with that much money usually chooses to live more lavishly than Wood, however. At one point, he did live in a garish mansion in Santa Monica, but he has downgraded since then.
Ellen Page, who made her big debut as a Hollywood star in the film Juno, isn't one for being super fancy. It wasn't until 2014 that she moved out of her very modest Hollywood Hills home that consisted of just two bedrooms and a bathroom and a half.
Pete Wentz, the rock star from pop-punk band Fall Out Boy, did not let his fame and wealth go straight to his head. He started out with a modest home in Studio City, California, that was far from indulgent. The home was worth about $1 million and was surrounded by exotic plants, trees and waterfalls to help him relax and escape the crazy rock star life.
As one of the most famous musicians in the world, Paul McCartney could have chosen to live in complete extravagance. Instead, he lives in a home that is very modest, at least relative to his $1.2 billion worth. Let’s just say if you walked down his street, you wouldn't be able to tell which house was his.
Shaquille O’Neal is a legendary athlete whose name has already gone down in basketball history. The subsequent wealth he accumulated didn’t lead him to purchase the most grandiose of homes, however. From the curb, his house in Mount Dora, Florida, doesn’t look very fancy at all.
Adrian Peterson, the NFL star mostly known for his time with the Minnesota Vikings, is worth about $20 million in 2019. Despite all that money, he has lived with his wife and four kids in a fairly modest house in Minnesota — purchased for $665,000 — for 10 years.
Actress and model Brooke Shields — worth $25 million to date — didn't opt to live in the kind of crazy mansion that many people of her financial status would. Her house in the Hamptons, which she bought in 2013, wasn't exactly cheap, but that has more to do with its location than its size.
Sarah Jessica Parker
Sarah Jessica Parker, most famous for her role on Sex and the City, didn't differ much from the New York City character she played. She and her husband lived a very long time in a brownstone in Greenwich Village that was worth $12 million. For the location and relative to their joint combined worth of $135 million, that amount was a drop in the bucket.
It's an interesting decision for someone as famous and rich as Jack White to buy a home for just $510,000 in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Of course, being worth $45 million doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend your money on gigantic, garish place to live.
As the CEO of Apple, one of the most successful companies in the world, Tim Cook could have purchased the most extravagant living quarters in the world. Instead, he chose a modest home in Palo Alto, California — a simple condo with a small yard and four bedrooms.
Mad Men star Vincent Kartheiser spent more than 10 years living in a tiny but smartly designed Hollywood home. He bought the property for $547,000 in 2003 and then had it completely redesigned by Funn Roberts, a specialty designer of small spaces, in 2010.
Tori Spelling, who is known for moving around more than usual, tends to choose homes that are more on the modest side for herself and her family. While living humbly was never necessary in the past for the actress, who also had a famous and wealthy father, she did so anyway.
Dave Grohl, a founding member of the legendary rock band Foo Fighters and the former drummer for Nirvana, is worth $280 million. So, why did he live so long in a basic looking beach house that was worth a mere $3 million? Some stars find lavish mansions to be too much for their taste, it seems.