Billionaire MacKenzie Scott is currently giving out houses to charities as part of her ongoing campaign to donate at least half of her money.
Two of her residences, both in Beverly Hills, California, were recently given to the California Community Foundation (CCF), which awards funds to charitable organizations with a mission in Los Angeles. According to CCF Senior Vice President Jarrett Barrios, the organization plans to sell both mansions, which are valued a total of $55 million, and utilize 90% of the proceeds to support affordable housing programs.
He adds that the remaining 10% will fund a program for integrating new immigrants. “We have in Los Angeles a critical need for affordable housing that is linked to the homelessness crisis we are experiencing, and the cure for homelessness is homes,” Barrios tells CNBC Make It. “This [gift] will ensure a sizable increase in our annual spending on creating housing and supporting tenants.”
Scott started the donation procedure for the mansions last month, and the deal was concluded this past weekend.
One of the residences was purchased in 2007 for $24.4 million by Scott and her ex-husband Jeff Bezos, whose net worth was at $38.2 billion as of Tuesday afternoon. They paid $12.9 million for the second house, which was right across the street, ten years later. According to Zillow, the residences have 11 bedrooms, 13 bathrooms, a pool, and a tennis court together.
CNBC Make It contacted Scott for comment, but he didn’t return it right away. She revealed humanitarian donations totaling around $4 billion over the previous nine months in March. On its website, the foundation states that it gave $20 million to the CCF to create the LA Arts endowment fund, which awards grants to Los Angeles’ small- to medium-sized art organizations.
“When our giving team focuses on any system in which people re struggling, we don’t assume that we, or any other single group, can know how to fix it,” Scott posted in March on Medium. “Instead, we seek a portfolio of organizations that supports the ability of all people to participate in solutions. This means a focus on the needs of those whose voices have been underrepresented.”
Before choosing which groups would receive yearly grants from the sales revenues, CCF must market and sell the mansions, according to Barrios, so it will take some time before the mansions become useful funds. He continues, “The organization’s ultimate purpose is to fund housing justice initiatives that aid tenants in accessing information and applying for rental assistance programs, as well as create and maintain affordable housing units for low-income persons in Los Angeles.
According to Paula Valle Castaon, director of marketing and communications at CCF, a significant portion of the timeline is based on how volatile the housing market is in southern California. She claims that the hired realtors are unsure of the expected timing of the home sales.
“We’re grateful to MacKenzie Scott for investing in our community, and her partnership will allow CCF to grow our reach in the community,” Castañon says. “But we’re also honored she felt our team was competent and in CCF’s ability to maintain and sell two multimillion-dollar homes.”