Friday, February 15, 2008

There's Foreclosure Trouble in Paradise

Oh dear.

Even the assumed to be wickedly rich sometimes have cash flow problems, which seems to be the unfortunate situation for the Los Angeles based and controversial property developer Robert Bisno and his wife Jeanette whose big Beverly Park mansion appears to be headed into foreclosure. Uh-oh.

Thanks to an early morning missive from our Fairy Godmother in Bev Hills, and according to several records databases we accessed, Your Mama has learned that Mister and Missus Bisno are in default on a $4,000,000 mortgage. With all the interest and penalties, records show they are in the hole $4,622,000 and 128 smack-a-roos. The process has proceeded far enough along that a February 29th auction date has been set. (Is this a leap year?) It is just a little difficult to believe that the once high flying Bisno couple can't cough up the four and something million clams required to save their property. Does this hint at a larger financial problem? Has Mister Bisno been caught over-leveraged in the midst of a mortgage meltdown and a sagging economy? Is this all some dreadful misunderstanding that will be cleared up once Mister and Missus Bisno complete a complicated debt restructuring?

Property records show these Bisno people bought and built their 11,894 square foot house in 2002. All signs point to the residence having 4 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms. Records on file with the County Assessor show that some kind of transfer of the property occurred in October of 2007 with a $7,000,000 consideration. Your Mama can not confirm, but we think this may have been one of those restructuring and refinancing situations that stupendously rich people do to shuffle around their debt, protect their assets, and put a little hard cash in their pocketbook at the same time. Don't quote us on that one kids, because we're just speculatin'.

Although no one but the heartless enjoys seeing anyone's home foreclosed on, Your Mama does not imagine that the Bisnos' big name neighbors will be crying much when and if the moving vans come to haul away the Bisnos' crap. See children, several years ago the Bisnos caused quite a kerffufle with a large, and some said lewd sculpture they installed in their motor court. There was also considerable consternation over garbage cans and motorized drive gates that were deemed "too Vegas" by the Beverly Park architectural review committee. Which is kinda rich when one considers the outsize and overdone nature of most of the behemoth Bev Park residences.

Why the neighbors would give a shit about a sculpture that they would unlikely be able to see as they rolled by in their Bentleys and BMWs is beyond Your Mama scope of understanding. But the fact that the other fat livin' Bev Park residents did care about something that would have little or no visual impact on them should be an indication to all that the Bisnos were probably not the most popular couple in Beverly Park.

And this being Beverly Park, their neighbors are, of course, exceptionally successful entrepreneurs, entertainment industry bigwigs, and ridiculously rich royals. Across the street from the Bisno mansion is airplane lease billionaire Steve Udvar-Hazy and his 28,660 square foot palatial pile that sprawls across three prime parcels. Next door is the comparatively modest manse that Hollywood hot shot Mike Medavoy and his notoriously high maintenance wifey Irena currently have on the market for $23,500,000, and behind the Bisno property are three monstrous mansions that Your Mama understands are owned by several members of the Saudi royal family.

Of course, foreclosures on multi-million dollar estates are somewhat rare, but the Bisnos are far from the only seemingly stinking rich folks who are grappling with the sticky and tangled web of foreclosure. Your Mama has (too) many times discussed the drama of Michael Jackson's never ending financial fracas with Neverland Ranch, and we've well covered the nasty bizness of socialite and bible scholar Veronica Hearst's ongoing money troubles over her mammoth Manalapan mansion that is reportedly headed for the auction block.

Should the Mister and Missus Bisno be booted from behind the hallowed gates of Beverly Park, Your Mama is not overly worried that they will end up parking their Rolls Royce in front of a dumpy Hollywood apartment complex or in the car port of a run down double wide in San Bernadino. We presume that the couple own several other dee-luxe properties in Los Angeles and Berkeley (where they were at one time based). Let's just hope for their cash strapped sake, they're not carrying monstrous mortgages on those places too.


Anonymous said...

Kharma - he should've moved into a trailer park....

Anonymous said...

It's very unkind to laugh at someone else's financial woes. Besides, it looks like all these people are guilty of is greed and bad taste, which is pretty much true of everyone who lives in Beverly Park. Losing one's home - I don't care if it's 2,000 square feet or 20,000 square feet - has got to be a devastating experience. So stop laughing, meanie.

Alessandra said...

Live by leverage, die by leverage.

I don't envy these people in possibly losing their home. I also don't envy them for living in Beverly Park, which seems like the most pretentious and fish-bowly place in a city that is famous for pretension and a false sense of privacy. The Bisnos' sculpture doesn't sound horrid, but I agree that someone must have really hated them to protest it, especially if it wasn't visible from the street.

Anonymous said...

Laughing at others misfortune. Classy.

Anonymous said...

My questions are:

Is that considered Mission Style architecture?
Such a large house, so few windows?
Such a large house, so few bedrooms?
Wendy, do you know them? Were you personally violated by their lewd sculpture one dark and sultry evening, 'cause that's a shitty thing to say. Karma gonna make your vodka warm and your crackers stale with that kind of crack hassle.
I try to stay out of the nonsense, but that's hard. Peace out lady.

Anonymous said...

Reading the responses during the Malibu fires I'm not really expecting much when it comes to this latest post. Many people who read this blog & comment seem to resent the wealthy & have zero apathy. Oh, they're rich ... doesn't matter if their home burns down! Oh, they have an ugly statue & gates ... lets hate them. Pretty pathetic if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

You have to feel for anyone going through the foreclosure process... it's got to be a dreadful feeling. Not classy at all to laugh or poke fun at.

I've got to say, Beverly Park is aweful pretentious (like allesandra said) and over the top ridiculous in my eyes. It seems like a cold place the rich try to get away from the world, but there is nothing special about it if you ask me and I've seen a couple residences there.

The only good thing about living in Beverly Park is telling people you live in Beverly Park, but every time I've driven through those gates there is a cold, lonely feeling about the place

Anonymous said...

Hi 10:23,
I do respect your view and agree some will always lack empathy. But I also hope did notice during the (Malibu and OC-area) fires--and other life-altering threads, how negative commenters are not well received by a great many who offer heartfelt concern. I choose to value the positive and skip over the unfairly negative in all public forums. There are good people here.

Anonymous said...

Losing one's home must be truly devastating; to lose it through mismanagement of assets must make it only worse.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree Sandpiper. My post perhaps should have mentioned all the positive voices [which there are many!] but it's the spiteful, vindictive, jealous posts that annoy me ..

The internet gives people a sense of bravado, in reality the harshest words probably come from the nicest of people. It's strange!

Anonymous said...

The houses in Beverly Park are sooo unattractive!
And scaled so badly for their lot sizes!

Anonymous said...

Good God, Omar's back.

Anonymous said...

As foreign as the following may seem to be for moi... There but for the grace of God go I. Yes, I've said crass things about Mr.Jackson's Make-You-Wonderland, but I was hungover at the time and my sciatica was acting up again (never, I repeat NEVER go into porn). All the news about foreclosures makes me wonder if the Bush man hasn't put an order out to Wall Street to keep mum on the truth about our economy. At least until the Democrats move in. That way, Hillary/Obama would be blamed for the mess caused by our $3 trillion dollar occupation in Iraq. IM"H"O. So, however fucked up one may be, I would not wish anyone to go through such an emotionally and financially devastating event.

luke220 said...

$4.6 million seems like a small amount given the values of these homes.. is something else going on? A divorce? His way of getting her out of the house?

Anonymous said...

i think you hit the nail on the head luke

lol at lgb,
"Good God, Omar's back."

Anonymous said...

I'm certainly not going to dance on anyone's financial grave. However, something does seem missing from the story...But then again, sometimes even the mighty fall.

The house is pretty modest by B.P. standards. I can't imagine it will actually get auctioned off. Surely they could sell if for $10M and walk away with money in their pocket. Yes?

As for all the bickering, just because some of us don't enjoy LGBs incessant comments, does not make us vindictive or jealous. It makes us annoyed and frustrated because they take away from OUR enjoyment of this blog. And whether some of you like it or not, our enjoyment matters too...Sounds like we're equal then in that some of you are annoyed and frustrated by all of our comments.

Just read around them like you expect from us.

Anonymous said...

Looking on Zillow, the neighborhood seems to be split between houses in the 10k-14k s.f. and houses in the 23k-27k s.f. range. Maybe we focus on the monstrosities more?

Also, we don't know if the 4m mortgage is the only mortgage on the place or if it is just the one in default. They may owe more than 4m.

And I agree, horrible to make light of anyone losing their home, whether it is a mansion or your mamma finally kicking your sorry butt out of the basement.

Anonymous said...

hey what happened to big time listings why are they still down ?

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:24 / Shame on you coming in here asking about the competition! Where are your manners?

No glee at these people's foreclosure plight, but his Bisno guy was no angel. Google him.

Don't you think he's got a big fat bank account in the Caymans? I kinda do.

Anonymous said...

Barren Karen,

BIG TIME LISTINGS is a freind here, frequently sourced by Mama and vs versa. Relax.

Anonymous said...

barren karen - yeah he's a real bad guy. fought the city of santa monica for ruling that rent control only applies to the poor when his landlord quadrupled his rent. how loud would the screaming be if that happened to the poor folks? maybe he went about trying to improve lincoln place apartments the wrong way but something had to be done before the place fell down around their heads. i use to live across the street on the other side of penmar and the complex was a tenement. those tenants werent taking care of it. they were growing vegtable gardens in the lawn for gosh sakes.

you cant always believe the liberal media.

Anonymous said...

i've gotta admit, not feeling the pain for 10mil ugly house guy.
i'm sure he's not gonna be homeless & probably more to the story, eddie murphys ex is an example.
the way some of these guys buy & sell these estates, i'd be careful about using the term home because it doesn't seem to be in their vocab.
what the hell is open id

Anonymous said...

oh. bite. bite. ouch.

that's okay. i'm tougher than I look.

Anonymous said...

The best thing about Beverly Park is that they keep the riff-raff out. No photographers, looky-loos etc. If you lived on non-gate guarded streets like Mapleton, Charing Cross, Carolwood have tour vans and cars going by all day and into the night. Hundreds of cars go by the houses on those streets just slowing down or stopping in front. Long live gated communities.

Anonymous said...

Barren Karen, you said:

"As for all the bickering, just because some of us don't enjoy LGBs incessant comments, does not make us vindictive or jealous. It makes us annoyed and frustrated because they take away from OUR enjoyment of this blog. And whether some of you like it or not, our enjoyment matters too...Sounds like we're equal then in that some of you are annoyed and frustrated by all of our comments.

Just read around them like you expect from us."

How's that work again? Skip around your comments if someone doesn't like them? The first time that suggestion was made it produced a howl of protest, mostly from you.

When you first started posting I thought, "Great! Here's a woman with a wry sense of humor who will add something to the group." But I've heard nothing but cynicism and bitterness from you since, and very little commentary on what Mama has posted.

Nevertheless, I will read your entries and I will continue to make mine, because I think everyone deserves to have a say, and this blog was having a fine run long before you started posting a few weeks back. So let it go already; I'm not being run off because it spoils YOUR (and, evidently others) enjoyment, just as I don't expect you to be run off when you spoil mine (and some others, too). Mama didn't set this up for any specific person's benefit; she had a great idea and this is what it's evolved into. She's aware of the squabbling and wants it to stop.

I thought long and hard before posting this, so I apologize to you all, for I for one am not comfortable making negative personal comments, but there it is.

So let's all be adults and agree to disagree. It's Friday night and I for one am going out.

Anonymous said...

Is it my imagination? If you compare the shot here with the shot at "kerfflutle", this house has been altered or added on to.

Look at the left facing portion and then also the garage entry portion. Both sides have enormous add-ons done.

That's why I really don't think it is just a 4 bedroom house.

Anonymous said...

I stick by what I said they are not poor people losing their homes in the mid west they are rich and mean and probably do have millions off shore in some place like the Cayman Islands .If you read about them you will have NO sympathy for them.Save your tears for the working class who are losing homes all across the country not the residents of this place,anyway the place must be worth over 20 mil just sell it and move on!

Anonymous said...

HaHaHaHa, Five months ago I am the one who found this house on yahoo in foreclosure. Then the listing disappeared. I thought I was going crazy. Nice to see that I am not crazy and that the Bisnos are broke.

Now he has a better arguement for rent control.

luke220 said...

Anon. 5:18- the house pictured at "kerfflutle" is not the Bisno house at 66 Beverly Park, but the article references the separation of the couple. I guess they reconciled, at least once, but this foreclosure is a bit fishy to me.

Anon 5:28, I see some big tax liens on other Beverly Park properties, including 76 Beverly Park Lane and 73 Beverly Park Lane. Maybe some of these owners were too busy to see that the taxes were paid?

Anonymous said...

So_Chic, that's the spirit,that man doesn't go away easily. Give him the old heave ho! I must say that I feel positively out of the loop on these California postings. So many of you are so knowledgeable about these properties. The minutiae of details is positively daunting. You all seem to know how many trash cans are behind each abode. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Caveman, dear, just use name/url. That's what I figured out. Do they think we're all geeks? Why must they keep diddling with something that works just fine the way it is.

I know I'm one of the "old farts" that mama referenced a while back, but it seems that there are so many thin-skinned delicate types about these days. Please people, enjoy a little repartee, especially if it's witty. Who cares if it's scathing, all the better! My gawd, if we must all behave like junior leaguers, we'll die of boredom! Where is that damned Ms. Frivolity when we need her? I suppose she's gone back to work, more's the pity.

Anonymous said...

Anyone have any pictures of beverly park? Aerial, streets, etc??

Anonymous said...

looks like someone wiped out big time listings ? say it isn't so !!!!!

Anonymous said...

Omar Cruz,

The last time I bought real estate in costa rica I had to pay off the govt officials to live in peace and I still was driven away from my lands, I will never buy there again !!!!!!!!

luke220 said...

A friend bought a house in Costa Rica. He was robbed and murdered in his house and his car was later found in a mountainside village. No thanks for me.

Anonymous said...

Yes it can be VERY dangerous for gringos in Costa Rica and all other Central American countries.They think that If you're American you have money.That makes you a huge target.Be careful.

Anonymous said...

Before feeling sorry for M/M Bisno, please remember that Bob is the one that first took up evicting folks from his time owning Lincoln Place, in Santa Monica.

Move forward to today and it is the same Bob Bisno who want to evict residents and businesses in Baldwin Park, by using eminent domain to redevelop that City's downtown area so he can make a huge profit.

Northwest San Pedro, eastern Rancho Palos Verdes, Lomits, and Harbor City are faced with the prospect that Bob's Ponte Vista at San Pedro will allow him to construct 1,950 condominiums all having one four-lane Blvd. to share with the 37,000 other folks who are forced to use it.

Of course there is also Santa Ana and his lofts project. Bob wants to build a high-rise condominium building in that City as well.

We don't even need to go into how Bob dealt with the good folks of Berkeley, but I would imagine he would not be welcom returning to the site of that fiasco.

Bob has demonstrated his contempt for folks who want to keep his weapons of mass development out of neighborhoods where we regular folks live and try to maintain the quality of life we have worked so hard to enjoy, by calling us
"ranting elitists" in print and orally.

So you can imagine why this; Major Ranting Elitist, finds it so easy to view Bob's troubles as something to publicize on several other blogs I write.

Thank you to Real Estalker, Your Mama for providing this incredibly wonderful post.

The more you know about Bob Bisno, the more you feel distrustful towards him.

Unfortunately, having to deal with the many issues surrounding Ponte Vista, I have learned probably too much about Bob.

Anonymous said...

thanks hwood mayor, you might want to refine those selling points though, until then, i'll be the one staying home where i'm safe looking clueless.

Anonymous said...

I seem to recall reading something about the Lincoln Park residents, specifically about those growing vegetables in the common areas.

Apparently this was in response to having all the landscaping at one of the units ripped out overnight by you-know-who, I believe, if I recall correctly, in an effort to get the tenants out so he could convert the units to condos.

The residents are apparently proud of their efforts to beautify the place (despite the efforts to oust them) and keep it from becoming a slum and for that I applaud them.

Does this jibe with what any of you locals know about the story?

Anonymous said...

I remember when the famous film producer with the very hot son who is a mtg broker, well he had to sell his house in bev park so they would not lose it in foreclosure, what was his name, anyway, he did disaster movies. one of the neighbors was going to "help" and buy the house.. ha, i remember talking to the neighbor (of course we are talking about NORTH bev park) where the real bucks are. the neighbor whos has his whole family lving there in separate houses was going to pay something ridiculous. low. to "help" him out, old money from mexico city. anway, guess they sold, but it was a deal, I offered to help, but wanted the son included in the deal.......

Anonymous said...

Not commenting on this particular topic, but chiming in to ask about Big Time. I always check out Mama first but I did like poking around over there, too....

Anonymous said...

I'm going to bid on it, I was there today shopping for a house. But most likely, they have someone on the inside ready to grab it.

Anonymous said...

LGB, the gardens were there before any landscaping renovations started. They were there in the late 80s when I lived across the street. At that time, renters were more careful to keep them between the buildings or between the buildings and the carports but later they were anywhere anyone wanted.

Bisno bought sometime in the mid-80s and didn't remove the gardens right away. It wasn't until the renovations on the place started that various overgrown landscaping was removed along with some (not all) of the gardens.

In my opinion, the place was a pit. It was low cost housing built 50-60 years ago and suffered from deferred maintenance.

Bisno sold his interest years ago during the fight over the redevelopment. The Bisno Santa Monica rent control lawsuit is an old story from when the Bisnos still lived up north.

I'm not saying the guy is a choirboy but some of us may have done the same thing in his position.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:25,

Thanks for clearing this up for me; object lesson: never trust a single source for your information.

Anonymous said...

It is a challenge for developers wanting to buy these troubled properties and invest money improve them. One never knows when they are going to step into a hornets nest of tenants that will mobilize against the improvements in the name of "affordable housing". Probably have the same problem on your coast, people got into rental agreements decades ago when owners didn't think to put in a no sublet clause. One can end up with the grandchildren/friends/etc. living in a unit for pennies on the dollar of market value. A lot of these people don't work since they can afford to live off welfare because of their low rent. They nevered worked for anything so they have no sense of ownership to take care of anything either. They just feel entitled to sit around and smoke crack and weed all day (ok, I'm stereotyping but it is a lot of them). Yes, there are legit elder tenants and they do deserve to be compensated and relocated (sometimes the best thing as they really need care) but the vocal tenant groups are the losers who might actually have to get a job if they moved.

Sorry for the long rant but this is going on all over Los Angeles especially now in Hollywood.

And I disagree with Ed's Wife (God bless her), your posts don't shut out responses.

Happy President's Day

Anonymous said...

While I hate to see one loose their home, I could care less about what happens to Bob Bisno. I don't think he will lose his home, but if he does, I don't think anyone will be too shook up about it.

I have nothing against someone making lots and lots of money, in fact, I think it's great. What I do have a problem with is when someone rapes a community in order to get lots and lots of money. Bisno has a long history of doing that.

One of his current attempts for a project is in San Pedro, where he is trying to cram a development of 1950 condos on 61 arces of R-1 property. The vast majority of the San Pedro/Eastern Ranch Palos Verdes community oppose the project because of trafic and density concerns. Why should our quality of life suffer just so Bob can make a huge profit. He has insulted homeowner, local,elected officals, and anyone else who opposes him or his huge, huge project.

Did I hear Karma?

Anonymous said...

Sounds like San Pedro isn't nearly as opposed to it as the NIMBYs across the city line in PV.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"Sounds like San Pedro isn't nearly as opposed to it as the NIMBYs across the city line in PV."

Until annexed into the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, the "NIMBYs" written about lived with a San Pedro zip code, but not actually within the city limits of Los Angeles.

The "NIMBYs" referred to are hard-working family folks who live in tract housing just like so many others do.

But "anonymous" when is enough too much? Should the "NIMBYs" stand around and watch over crowding lower the quality of life they have worked so hard to have?

Ponte Vista in San Pedro when originally proposed would have created an over-sized condominium project with a population density near 39 residents per acre. The next largest development in that area, The Gardens, has a population density 1/3 of what Ponte Vista was orginally calculated to have.

San Pedro is on a peninsula and considered by many to be "out of the way" from Los Angeles. Whether it is true or not, having little transportation options, few routes in and out of the area, and the proximity to the Ports of L.A. and Long Beach means residents of that area face some unique issues, not found in most of the rest of the L.A. urban area.

And if the two-12.5 Million Gallon tanks of liquidfied petroleum gas blow up, being about 1/2 mile of the Ponte Vista site, none of us will have back yards left worth living on.

Anonymous said...

"Sounds like San Pedro isn't nearly as opposed to it as the NIMBYs across the city line in PV."

This guy is obviously some shill for Bisno. Look, I live in Pedro, I signed the R-1 petition, the list above my signature was every neighbor on my street. Everyone I know in Pedro is against Bisno's monster. So who isn't opposed? Only those receiving Bisno's $$$. And it looks like that might be dwindling...

Anonymous said...

I lived at one of his properties....slum lord. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the foreclosure advice. Hopefully, I won't be needing it anytime soon!