MENDHAM TWP. – An Internet advertisement for the sale of Whitney Houston’s home has been criticized for having crossed the bounds of good taste and well into the area of capitalizing on the late singer’s tragic death.
Ms. Houston died on Feb. 11 in California. Three days later, an Internet ad listed the North Gate Road home for $1.75 million, according to the ad placed through Car Property Group, a California firm that claims to specialize in sale of “real estate or businesses with a strong automotive use component.”
The 12,561-square-foot mansion has five bedrooms, five bathrooms and a rounded facade, on five acres of land. It was the setting in 2005 in the Bravo reality series "Being Bobby Brown" featuring Brown and his then-wife, Ms. Houston.
The property was marketed in 2009 by Coldwell Banker for $2.5 million. By September 2010, the mansion was unsold and the sale price was cut to $1,975,000. Sotheby’s began marketing the property in October 2010 for $1,750,000 but it again did not sell.
The latest ad claims that Ms. Houston contacted Car Property a few years ago about selling the 11-room mansion and its 5.1 acres.
“It is with a heavy heart that we remind you of this great mansion,” the ad says.
It goes on to note that “This house was also the scene of the activity that brought down this incredible musical diva over a 15 year cycle.”
Drew Kastner, who lives on Tempe Wick Road, not far from the Houston estate, said the ad is “wrong and disrespectful.”
“Whitney Houston was a good neighbor and she never caused anyone trouble,” Kastner said. “These guys (Car Property) shouldn’t use all this sensationalism.”
Kastner was an entertainment lawyer for NBC television for 10 years and he said Ms. Houston’s problems were tragic and that “the bigger you get the more pressure you’re under.”
“If I was a purchaser in the market and if I was attracted to a property owned by a celebrity, Whitney Houston is famous enough for all the good things she did,” Kastner said.
Car Sales did not return an email for comment.