Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love were famous for being a hot mess—so it’s no surprise that a Los Angeles house once owned by the late Nirvana frontman and by Love, the founder of the band Hole, is quite the fixer-upper. It can be all yours if you’re willing to pony up $998,000.
Listed with Sotheby’s International, the three-bedroom, three-bathroom house has seen better days.
The listing describes the 2,500-square-foot abode as having “fallen into disrepair and is a major fixer,” and warns that “it will not qualify for traditional financing.”
According to the Sotheby’s listing agent, Tatiana Tensen, Cobain wrote part of Nirvana’s last album, “In Utero,” in the home.
“Patty Schemel, the drummer from Hole, lived with Cobain and Love for a time, and in her documentary, she talks about him writing and playing this album in one of the home’s closets,” she says.
There’s no doubt this property is a piece of rock history, but it will require some serious elbow grease.
“A home like this that’s been sitting for some time is likely in need of structural repairs and system replacements,” says Cara Ameer, a real estate agent with Coldwell Banker in Los Angeles.
Yup—think wiring, plumbing, a new roof, and even foundation work.
As Ameer explains, “The word fixer-upper usually doesn’t mean cosmetic updates, so this property isn’t for the faint of heart.”
Whether you’re a fan hoping to buy this house or just curious to take an inside tour, check out these photos and more info about Cobain and Love’s old home—and why it might actually be a better investment than it looks at first glance.
Is Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love’s former home priced right?
Shockingly, the just-under-a-million price tag for a home of this size may be more than fair, given its prime location in Hollywood Heights, a coveted location in the hills near the Hollywood Bowl.
“This area is very convenient for anyone in the entertainment industry, and it’s near Runyon Canyon, a popular hiking spot in L.A.,” says Ameer.
Character and charm abound in Hollywood Heights’ many historic homes—and it has attracted many A-list actors and other celebs in the past.
“Ben Affleck and Matt Damon have lived here over the years, as have ’70s musicians like Glenn Frey, Don Henley, and Linda Ronstadt,” Ameer adds.
As such, the home is bound to fetch asking price—or more.
“In the current market, area homes of the same size are usually $500,000 more,” says Tony Mariotti, a real estate agent with RubyHome in Los Angeles.
While this house certainly needs some serious attention, the return on investment is likely to be excellent.
Mariotti adds, “At least interested buyers can know that after they fix it up, they can probably sell and make their money back.”
Ameer agrees. “Anything under a million is extremely hard to find in L.A.,” she says. “This is a large home, and it has a one-bedroom apartment downstairs that could be turned into a rental property.”
Along with the keys to this property comes access to a dedicated parking garage, a rarity in this area. But the coolest perk just might be membership in the Hightower Elevator Association, which offers residents a quick ride (rather than a sweaty hike) to the top of this steep, hilly enclave.
“While there are many walk-and-stair street communities in L.A., the homes here on Alta Loma Terrace are the only ones to have a private, five-story elevator to ferry people to the top of the hill,” explains Tensen.
While a coveted location can go a long way when a home needs a ton of work, sometimes it’s the intangible factors that make a difference.
“Given the rough condition of the home, the look does conjure up memories of those grunge rock days, with a lot of hard living, drinking, and drugs,” says Ameer.
That could work in this home’s favor—or not.
As Mariotti puts it, “The simple fact that Cobain and Love lived here can’t undo holes in the walls and a mess of tiles.”
Nonetheless, this 1921 Craftsman has some features worth keeping.
“If the floors can be salvaged, they should be sanded—and there’s some great vintage tile in one of the bathrooms that’s worth keeping,” says Ameer.
The original staircase railings could be saved too, although the graffiti on one bedroom wall may give potential owners pause.
As Ameer says, “It’s an homage to Cobain, but it does bring to mind darker times.”
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