Tag Archives: Beverly Hills

California's Real Estate King (And Real Beverly Hills Househusband) Mauricio Umansky Shares His Success Secrets

By David Hochman, Contributor

For better or worse, Mauricio Umansky is probably best known as one of the Househusbands of Beverly Hills (he’s married to Hilton-in-law/Real Housewife of Beverly Hills Kyle Richards). But there’s no denying the man’s talent as a real estate über-broker. In the last year or so, The Agency’s CEO and co-founder closed on nearly $100 million in home sales, including a $34 million French Palladian residential estate in Beverly Hills, making him the number one realtor in California, and a top ten in the U.S. We spoke this week about the state of L.A. real estate, his success secrets and why to choose your fashion accessories wisely. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

Aaron Paul’s First Acting Job Was A Kissing Scene On ‘Beverly Hills, 90210’ (VIDEO)

By The Huffington Post News Editors

Aaron Paul dropped by “The Tonight Show” to promote the upcoming final season of “Breaking Bad.” But Jay Leno had another plan up his sleeve. Why not have Aaron Paul rewatch footage of his first-ever acting gig? He got his big break on “Beverly Hills, 90210” — and he even got to have a kissing scene!

“Won’t thou leave me so unsatisfied?” his character said in a play.

“What satisfaction canst thou have tonight?” the girl replied. And then the two shared a rather short and rather sloppy kiss. As most people are their worst critics, Paul seemed horrified by what he had just seen.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

Korea, Not China, Should Be Our Model For Urban Development

By Richard Green, Contributor Here in Los Angeles, the subway along Wilshire Boulevard, one of the densest streets in America, ends 13 miles from the Pacific Ocean.  The Long Beach (or 710) Freeway and the 210 Freeway, two of the busiest trucking routes in America, are connected by surface streets, even though they are only 4.5 miles apart.  Both of these projects have been discussed for decades. The “Subway to the Sea” may finally happen, but even now, it will only go as far as Westwood, and it was delayed because of tantrums from Beverly Hills.  It is still not clear what will happen with the 710-210 gap. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

The Time Has Come For Southern California House Prices To Take A Rest

By Richard Green, Contributor

DataQuick today reported that house prices in Southern California have risen 28 percent from the last year.  A year ago, people who were buying houses in this part of the world were getting a good deal.  Now, the deal is so-so.

Take a look at the table below (it is something I constructed for my class on mortgages and mortgage backed securities).  The numbers on the vertical axis (.03,.05,.05..)are cost of capital numbers–the financing costs of owning a house.  Generally speaking, the cost of capital for owning a house is the mortgage rate plus one percent, which reflects that the cost of the equity in the house (the down-payment) is higher than the cost of the mortgage.  The numbers across the horizontal access (10, 15,20…) are rent-to-price ratios.  Suppose you can own a condo for $360,000; the rent on the same unit is $1500 per month or $18,000 per year.  The price to rent ratio is then 20.

In the example given here, we are looking at a household that pays a federal marginal tax rate of 25 percent, a state marginal tax rate of 7.9 percent, faces closing costs of 3 percent, annual maintenance cost of 2.5 percent, a property tax rate of one percent, a Realtor commission of 5 percent, and expects to hold the property for five years (feel free to email me at richarkg@usc.edu if you wish to put your own assumptions in the spreadsheet that produced the numbers listed below).

As it happens, I have been looking at costs and rents in Westwood, a neighborhood just west of Beverly Hills and on the other side of the 405 from Brentwood.  Rents on 2 bedroom units run around $28 per year per square foot; prices are around $650 per square foot, so the price to rent ratio is around 23.  With current mortgage rates at 4.5 percent, the cost of capital is 5.5 percent.  So lets look at the cells that are bolded: a price to rent ratio of 23 and a cost of capital of 5.5 lies in the middle of them.  The numbers in the cell is the amount of appreciation that is required each year that one holds a property for renting and owning to break even with each other.

So right now, for owning to be a better financial deal than renting, prices must rise around 4 percent each year.  Is this feasible in the long run for Los Angeles?  Yes, because over the long term, prices in LA tend to rise by about the rate of inflation plus one percent, so if we think 3 percent steady state inflation is in our future, we should be fine.  But will it rise much more than inflation plus one percent for a long time?  I doubt it.  And of course, CPI growth is less than two percent right now.  House prices are about where fundamentals say they should be, but it is time for increases to slow down.

Price to Rent Ratio
10 15 20 25 30
0.03 -0.031 0.003 0.020 0.030 0.036
0.04 -0.024 0.010 0.027 0.037 0.044
0.05 -0.017 0.017 0.034 0.044 0.051
Cost of Capital 0.06 -0.009 0.024 0.041 0.051 0.058
0.07 -0.002 0.031 0.048 0.058 0.065
0.08 0.005 0.039 0.055 0.066 0.072
0.09 0.012 0.046 0.063 0.073 0.079
0.1 0.019 0.053 0.070 0.080 0.087

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

Four Seasons' Big Restaurant Gamble Pays Off In Los Angeles

By Ann Abel, Contributor

On the surface, it sounds like the silliest kind of publicity stunt: choosing the new chef for a big-time hotel’s flagship restaurant by staging a reality TV contest. But this is Los Angeles. And this decades-old hotel on the edge of Beverly Hills is a leader in the entertainment industry (some 80 percent of all press junkets anywhere are held in the hotel, according to the publicist). And Four Seasons is a brand that’s determined to shed its traditional, straitlaced image. So that’s exactly what happened.

From: http://www.forbes.com/sites/annabel/2013/04/22/four-seasons-big-restaurant-gamble-pays-off-in-los-angeles/

10 Reasons Why The Bentley Continental GTC Speed Is The Best Four-Seat Convertible On The Market

By Hannah Elliott, Forbes Staff

Last week in California I drove an indigo blue Bentley GTC Speed from the Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood through Beverly Hills and down through Orange County near the surfer’s paradise of Salt Creek and Dana Point.

From: http://www.forbes.com/sites/hannahelliott/2013/04/19/10-reasons-why-the-bentley-continental-gtc-speed-is-the-best-four-seat-convertible-on-the-market/

If You Want to Be Audited, Live in One of These Five Areas

By The Associated Press

Filed under: , , ,

By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER

WASHINGTON (AP) – Worried the Internal Revenue Service might target you for an audit? You probably should be if you own a small business in one of the wealthy suburbs of Los Angeles.

You might also be wary if you’re a small-business owner in one of dozens of communities near San Francisco, Houston, Atlanta or the District of Columbia.

A new study by the National Taxpayer Advocate used confidential IRS data to show large clusters of potential tax cheats in these five metropolitan areas. The IRS uses the information to target taxpayers for audits.

The taxpayer advocate, Nina Olsen, runs an independent office within the IRS. She got access to the data as part of an effort to learn more about why some taxpayers are more likely to cheat than others.

The study also looked at tax compliance in different industries, and found that people who own construction companies or real estate rental firms may be more likely to fudge their taxes than business owners in other fields.

Many of the communities identified by the study are very wealthy, including Beverly Hills and Newport Beach in California. Others are more middle class, such as New Carrollton, Md., a Washington suburb, and College Park, Ga., home to a section of Atlanta’s massive airport.

Steve Rosansky, president and CEO of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, said business owners in his city are probably targeted because many have high incomes. The likelihood of an audit does increase with income, according to IRS data.

“I imagine it’s just a matter of them going where they think the money’s at,” Rosansky said in an interview. “I guess if I was running the IRS I’d probably do the same thing.”

The study focused on small-business owners – sole proprietorships, to be specific – because they have more opportunity than the typical individual to cheat on their taxes. Many small businesses deal in cash while most individuals get paid in wages that are reported to the IRS.

The IRS only audits about 1 percent of tax returns each year, so the agency tries to pick returns that are most likely to yield additional tax money.

The IRS will not say much about how agents choose their targets. But as millions of procrastinators scramble to meet Monday’s deadline to file their taxes, the agency is running every tax return through a confidential computer program to determine the chances of collecting more money from an audit.

Each tax return is assigned a score. The higher your score, the more likely you are to get audited because, according to the IRS, the more likely you are cheating on your taxes.

The score is called the Discriminant Inventory Function, or DIF. A high DIF score does not guarantee you are a tax cheat but the

From: http://www.dailyfinance.com/2013/04/15/IRS-audits-south-west-tax-cheats/

Brett Shaad Dead After Family Decides To Remove Him From Life Support

By The Huffington Post News Editors

WEST HOLLYWOOD — Brett Shaad, a 33-year-old West Hollywood, Calif. man, is dead after being removed from life support Saturday evening.

Shaad, who had been diagnosed with bacterial meningitis just four days earlier, was removed from life support at 6:24 p.m. and died at 6:42 p.m. at Cedars-Sinai hospital in Beverly Hills, Calif.

His brother Brian Shaad released this statement to The Huffington Post and other news outlets: “Tonight our family made the incredibly difficult decision to remove my brother Brett from life support. He died peacefully surrounded by our family and friends.”

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From: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/14/brett-shaad-dead-after-fa_n_3078411.html

‘The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills: Secrets Revealed’: Lisa Thinks Kyle Hired Fay To Stir Up Trouble (VIDEO)

By The Huffington Post News Editors

The final chapter of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” season came with the “Secrets Revealed” special. Included was unseen footage from the Reunion special that finally addressed the Faye Resnick situation. Faye, while not a housewife, was a big stirrer of the drama throughout the season. She repeatedly attacked Brandi Glanville throughout the season, despite the fact that she barely knew her.

Lisa Vanderpump had a theory about that. “She was working for you!” she accused Kyle Richards, who denied it vehemently.

At another point, Lisa suggested, ““I think Faye is so desperate for camera time, that she will go after anything just to make a big mark.” While it wasn’t a positive impact, she certainly did leave a lasting impression on both the viewers and the other castmembers.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

‘Dancing With The Stars’: After Collapsing During Rehearsal, Did Lisa Vanderpump Perform? (VIDEO)

By The Huffington Post News Editors

It was a scary moment in the rehearsal studio when Lisa Vanderpump collapsed suddenly. News broke over the weekend that the “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star had collapsed during rehearsals for “Dancing With the Stars.” Fans got to see that moment unfold on the latest performance episode of the show.

Vanderpump has been blogging her “DWTS” experience for People magazine, and she wrote about the incident. She explained that she had a viral infection coupled with exhaustion. That led to a rapid heart rate and low blood pressure. Then, lights out.

After the frightening incident, it wasn’t clear if Vanderpump would be able to continue with the show. In fact, she waited until 15 minutes prior to showtime to make her final decision. The show must go on!

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

The Window Is Closing on the Next Wireless Land Grab

By Dan Radovsky, The Motley Fool

Filed under:

Remember The Beverly Hillbillies? If you don’t, here’s the premise of the long-running sitcom, as explained in its theme song:

“Come and listen to a story ’bout a man named Jed,
A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed.
Then one day he was shootin’ at some food,
And up through the ground come a bubblin’ crude …
Oil, that is … black gold … Texas tea.”

It goes on to explain how finding oil gave Jed and his kinfolk the cash to leave the holler and move to Beverly Hills, where foolish hijinks involving movie stars and swimming pools would then ensue.

The Beverly Hillbillies, running nine seasons from the early ’60s into the ’70s, was a big hit for CBS during the shank of broadcast television’s golden age. However, more than 40 years after The Beverly Hillbillies’ oil well finally dried up, Jed’s good fortune now mirrors that of the denizens of broadcast television’s current backwoods — the UHF television stations.

UHF station owners are sitting on the equivalent of newly discovered oil reserves in a world that’s fighting for every last drop of crude. The valuable substance in this case is spectrum, the frequencies that the mobile operators covet as wireless broadband usage is driving the telecom industry.

The UHF channels are in the highest wireless frequency range allotted to broadcast television, and those frequencies are more useful to mobile communications than to the lower frequencies of the VHF channels used by the network affiliates and some independent stations.

Suddenly, UHF stations have become a valuable commodity — not because of their programming, audiences, or facilities, but solely for their spectrum licenses.

Spectrum is the lifeblood of wireless communications, and the major mobile operators are willing to pay big bucks for it.

AT&T tried and failed to buy T-Mobile USA and its spectrum in for $39 billion. Verizon paid $3.9 billion to Comcast and other cable companies for their cache of spectrum. Clearwire is currently being sought by Sprint Nextel for its frequencies, and now in a bit of a turnaround, T-Mobile USA wants to buy MetroPCS and its airwave resources.

To take advantage of the need for spectrum, there is a UHF station buying spree going on, according to Variety. Like real estate speculators searching out run-down properties in changing neighborhoods, investors are scooping up UHF stations for later sale to the highest bidders.

The San Francisco Bay-area UHF station, KTLN, residing on channel 47, a religious-programming broadcaster, was bought for $8 million by OTA Broadcasting, a group headed up by computer impresario Michael Dell in 2011. OTA also owns three other stations: KFFV and MeTV in Seattle, and WEBR in New York City.

But UHF station owners are also facing a dilemma. If those in the higher channels don’t sell voluntarily, they might face eviction from their current FCC-designated spectrums and be moved to a new home to share spectrum with another station on a lower …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance

Brandi Glanville’s Chest Can’t Be Ignored In Plunging Minidress (PHOTOS)

By The Huffington Post News Editors

We try not to make a habit of reporting the fashion choices of “Real Housewives” cast members, but some things are too ridiculous to be ignored.

The last time we saw Brandi Glanville, our girl from Beverly Hills, she was turning heads at the Academy Awards in a plunging nude gown that she designed for herself (yes, really). But the reality star caught our eyes again last night at the 2013 Bravo New York Upfront party. Again with the cleavage, Brandi?

This event was decidedly more casual than the Oscars, so the 40-year-old went with a mesh red cocktail dress with a wide-set neckline that practically reached her belly button. Need we say more?

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

Lisa Rinna On ‘Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills’: Season 4 Cast Rumors

By The Huffington Post News Editors

Watch out Lisa Vanderpump, another Lisa — Lisa Rinna — could be heading to “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”

According to RadarOnline, Rinna has been approached to join the Season 4 cast of Bravo’s “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.” “Lisa already knows people at Bravo and they really like her. She’s funny but she’s got a great sense of humor so she can send zingers,” a source told the gossip site.

In 2011, Rinna revealed she was close to joining the show’s cast for Season 1. “We were in discussions originally,” Rinna said. “I was up for it, and at the time I did my show instead of ‘Beverly Hills.’ It was part of the process, but then my show came along so I ended up doing our show.” The show Rinna referred to was “Harry Loves Lisa” on TV Land.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

Lisa Vanderpump, Gleb Savchenko On ‘Dancing With The Stars’ Woes, Sexy Dances And More

By The Huffington Post News Editors

Lisa Vanderpump has a theory as to why she and Gleb Savchenko wound up in the bottom three on “Dancing With the Stars,” and it has to do with “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”

No, it’s not some plan castmates and former friends Kyle Richards and Adrienne Maloof cooked up — just unfortunate timing.

“I think it was hard because we weren’t in the bottom three for dancing, but my show airs in the two hours that ‘Dancing With the Stars’ airs,” Lisa told The Huffington Post in a phone interview. “It was my wedding renewal last week in our finale and the first part of our reunion. I think a lot of my fanbase was watching that show. I think that hurts us. We really just need guys to vote and support us. More than anything, we’re just having an amazing time.”

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

RealD and Mirage Cinema Group Announce 3D Cinema Deal

By Business Wirevia The Motley Fool

Filed under:

RealD and Mirage Cinema Group Announce 3D Cinema Deal

Mirage to Equip up to 60 Auditoriums Across Russia with RealD 3D

LOS ANGELES & MOSCOW–(BUSINESS WIRE)– RealD Inc. (NYS: RLD) , a leading global licensor of 3D technologies, and Mirage Cinema Group today announced an agreement to equip up to 60 auditoriums at Mirage locations across Russia with RealD 3D technology. Installation of RealD 3D technology has already begun.

“This agreement with Mirage further demonstrates our continued focus on growth in the Russian market,” said Robert Mayson, Managing Director, RealD Europe. “We look forward to quickly ramping up our installations across the Mirage circuit to ensure that Russian cinemagoers have the opportunity to enjoy a premium, bright and realistic RealD 3D visual experience for the upcoming summer and holiday film seasons.”

“We are delighted to have found in RealD a partner that shares our commitment to providing a premium 3D experience to the cinemagoing public,” said Alexander Ivoninsky, President of Mirage Cinema Group. “RealD’s technology advantage will give even our largest auditoriums a bright and clear 3D image on screen that promises to immerse audiences like never before.”

Globally, RealD is the world’s most widely used 3D cinema technology with approximately 22,200 screens equipped with RealD 3D by approximately 1,000 exhibitors in 68 countries around the world (as of December 31, 2012).

About RealD Inc.

RealD is a leading global licensor of 3D technologies. RealD’s extensive intellectual property portfolio is used in applications that enable a premium 3D viewing experience in the theater, the home and elsewhere. RealD licenses its RealD Cinema Systems to motion picture exhibitors that show 3D motion pictures and alternative 3D content. RealD also provides its RealD Display, active and passive eyewear, and RealD Format technologies to consumer electronics manufacturers and content producers and distributors to enable the delivery and viewing of 3D content. RealD’s cutting-edge 3D technologies have been used for applications such as piloting the Mars Rover.

RealD was founded in 2003 and has offices in Beverly Hills, California; Boulder, Colorado; London, United Kingdom; Moscow, Russia; Shanghai, China; Hong Kong; and Tokyo, Japan. For more information, please visit our website at www.reald.com.

About Mirage Cinema Group
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Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance