Not long ago, we heard that Ed McMahon was close to losing his Beverly Hills mansion to foreclosure. Somehow, this 85-year-old man who was once reputed to be worth $200 million was unable to make the payments on his house. His agent blamed the problem on a neck injury that rendered him unable to work for 18 months, which says that McMahon has so completely squandered his fortune that he is forced to bring home the bacon into his mid-80s.
But McMahon’s celebrity was on his side. After a deal for the house — listed at $4.6 million — fell through at the last minute, McMahon’s real estate agent, Alex Davis of Alex Davis Estates, published this letter in the Los Angeles MLS Open House Guide, pleading for someone to help out the poor guy before his house and belongings got taken away from him.
Never one to shy away from publicity, Donald Trump announced last week that he would buy McMahon’s house and lease it back to him. The deal will be a short sale, meaning that the lender (Countrywide) will have to accept less than what is owed on the house to avoid the hassle of foreclosure.
One question: Will McMahon be able to make his rent payments? He’s being sued by at least two lenders, who claim he owes them $250,000 and $275,000, respectively. He also owes American Express about $750,000. Thankfully, Trump doesn’t need the money, but we’d hate to see him have to evict McMahon in a year or two.
For his part, McMahon is at least honest about what got him into this mess. “If you spend more money than you make, you know what happens,” he told Larry King in a June interview on CNN. Yes, but not everyone can use their fame to attract a rich benefactor to bail them out.