Very few homes in movies look bad. Even those featuring the seemingly less well-off characters tend to be above average. Of course, some are far bigger, better, and more lavish than others, like the cosy cottage in The Holiday, the massive, booby-trapped house in Home Alone, and the fantastical estate in The Great Gatsby.
However, not all homes made famous by the movie industry are inherently expensive. They may tick up in value after featuring in films, but to start with, some creatives opt to save a bit of their budget by filming in more cost-effective venues instead. These are three of the best that managed to sell for still quite reasonable prices, as well as one that’s just absurd for fun.
4 Privet Drive (Harry Potter franchise)
It may not have many happy memories for Harry Potter, what with much of his life being spent in the cupboard under the stairs, but the home is undeniably pretty. In 2001, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone hit cinemas, showing the house to magic fans everywhere, with the final film coming out in 2011. In 2010, the house was purchased for what would end up being a bargain of £290,000 ($377,000), per BBC.
While it isn’t strictly on 4 Privet Drive in Surrey, instead, being on Picket Post Close in Berkshire, the house was sold for £475,000 ($618,000) just six years later. It seems likely that the price has gone up a bit by now, so anyone looking to buy it or a house like it will want to save money wherever possible. It just so happens that the UK is in the midst of a red-hot market, but you can use soft credit checks to land a Trussle mortgage in principle for free, cutting down the costs of getting a house like the Harry Potter house. So, it might not be the most affordable anymore, but still a fair bit cheaper than many movie homes, and there are ways to reduce the fees involved in house-buying now.
Swan Home in Forks (Twilight franchise)
While it may have been set in Forks, Washington, you’ll actually find the home that housed Bella Swan and her father around 220 miles south, in St. Helen’s of Oregon. It’s still in the Pacific Northwest, so there’s similar scenery to what you’d expect to find in Forks, but overall, the house is too nice to worry if it’s in Washington or Oregon.
As detailed by People, the house went up for sale unchanged since filming for just $350,000 ($270,000) in 2018. While it hasn’t been confirmed if the winners of that sale still own the house, it’s now listed on Airbnb as the ‘Twilight Swan House,’ with the hosts boasting a 4.99-star review from 328 reviews.
Buffalo Bill’s House (Silence of the Lambs)
Not too many want to live in a house used for horror films unless it looks like Buffalo Bill’s house in Silence of the Lambs. Still, that didn’t stop the sellers in 2021 from having some fun with its genre ties. The house in Perryopolis, Pennsylvania, was listed a bit before Halloween last year for just $299,000 (£230,000). However, while there is a brick-lined cellar, the scenes in the basement weren’t on-site.
The Woltz Mansion (The Godfather)
Now, for an exorbitant movie house. Very much depicting a lavish, Mediterranean aesthetic, the Woltz Mansion in The Godfather is one of the most memorable settings in cinema history. In September 2021, the setting for the movie – the Hearst Estate in Beverly Hills, California – sold for a cool $63.1 million (£48.5 million), with the bidding starting much lower, at $48 million, according to Realty News Report.
Of course, the current housing market means that each of these homes is likely worth even more now, but it’s nice to think that there are iconic movie houses out there very much within an average price range.