Real estate can make a lot of money, sometimes in surprising ways. One example is this (relatively) small house in Silver Lake, which is just over 2,000 square feet and sits on a hillside street on a smallish lot with no swimming pool. Three years ago, the same house sold for $1.8 million. It just sold off-market for about $4 million.
Bess Kalb, a well-known comedy writer who has written for “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” and whose book “Nobody Will Tell You This But Me” was a New York Times bestseller, was the lucky seller. During the time Kalb owned the well-kept but old 1930s house, she updated the kitchen and various living spaces. She also reportedly added an extra bedroom and bathroom. Still, it seems unlikely that she got out of the property without making a lot of money.
Zeshan Ali, a 32-year-old programmer who has a degree in computer science from the University of Maryland and most recently lived in St. Louis, Missouri, is the buyer who spent a lot of money. Ali was pretty unknown until earlier this year, when it came out that he was the person behind the secretive Internet persona “No Sass” or “Sass.” He was one of the four co-founders of the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), a group of simian avatars.
BAYC and its parent company, Yuga Labs, have some of the most popular NFTs in the world (nonfungible tokens). This year, investors like Andreessen Horowitz gave the project $450 million. Yuga Labs is now worth more than $4 billion, so it seems safe to assume that all four of the company’s co-founders are very wealthy.
Ali grew up in California and just got married to a freelance journalist from St. Louis. The couple says they are moving to Los Angeles to be closer to Ali’s family. Ali and his new wife will be able to look out over the San Gabriel Mountains and sometimes see Mount Baldy covered in snow from their $4 million hilltop home.
The photos below show how the house looked just before Kalb fixed it up. Since then, the somewhat old-fashioned interiors have been updated. But from the road and from the air, the charming but not too impressive house looks mostly the same.