Everyone knows Warren Buffett lives in the same Omaha, Nebraska house he bought in 1958 for $31,500 — a symbol of this billionaire’s philosophy of a downscale lifestyle. What’s not so well known is that the Oracle of Omaha once owned a sweet piece of Laguna Beach real estate.

Buffett’s former California coast home was a vacation spot for Buffett and his former wife, Susan. The world-famous value investor sold the property in 2005 for $5,450,000.

According to public records, Buffett bought the home in 1993 for $1,100,000, turning a nice little real estate profit. Of course, what else would we expect from Buffett except handsome net gains?

Ranked the second-richest American, Forbes lists him just behind his friend and fellow philanthropist Bill Gates. Buffett had a little head start on the Microsoft founder, since the octogenarian Buffett started investing in the stock market at age 11.

Although Buffett publicly disdains a billionaire’s lifestyle of high-end real estate, expensive cars and other extravagances, the Laguna Beach home — currently listed for $4,995,000 — looks like it could be filed under the luxury real estate category.

Sitting just “two homes off of the sand” on a private cul-de-sac, Buffett’s former house has views of the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island from several balconies and patios. Built in 1955, the 4-bedroom, 4-bath home has just over 3,000 square feet of living space set in an open floor plan with walls of glass and vaulted ceilings.

This isn’t the first time the home’s owners have placed the property on the market. In 2007, the home was listed for $9 million. Two years later, the listing saw a significant price cut of 27.8 percent down to $6,495,000.

Earlier in 2011, the home was re-listed at $5,295,000, only to see the price chopped again to its current sticker of $4,995,000. This downward trend is not unusual given the current market. Homeowners in southern California have on average been listing homes at a loss; median Laguna Beach home values have been declining at a rate of 16.7 year-over-year.

The listing is held by agent Tim Smith of Coldwell Banker.

According to data on Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, a monthly payment on this home would be $21,583 a month with 20 percent down and a 30-year loan.

About the Author

Erika Riggs, the Zillow Digs manager, covers home design and trends.

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