Few homes in the San Fernando Valley can match the fickle history of Tom Petty’s former spread in Encino, CA. The home once owned by the legendary rock star was just sold for the third time in four years—and for its highest price yet: $4,895,000.
Music producer Randy Spendlove, who received Grammy recognition for his soundtracks for “Chicago” and “Dreamgirls,” was the seller.
Spendlove bought the home for $4,485,000 in October 2018, after it had undergone a dazzling renovation. The overhaul resulted in a stylish six-bedroom,10-bathroom, 9,076-square-foot mansion. Spendlove listed the home in 2019 for $5 million.
And the renovation was necessary. The home’s history before its face-lift was colorful and included a fire, divorce, bankruptcy, foreclosure, tenants from hell, and even a SWAT team invasion!
The Pettys moved into the place in the mid-1980s and had to move out in 1987, after a fire erupted on the wooden staircase while the family was eating breakfast. Most of the structure was destroyed, save the basement recording studio.
The Pettys decided to rebuild the canyon home in a style described by one real estate agent as “Big Bear cabin meets Trousdale Estates.”
They lived together in the rebuilt home until Petty’s wife, Jane, acquired it in their 1996 divorce settlement. She eventually tried to sell the residence in 2013 for $3.58 million.
However, she had taken out other loans on the house and owed considerably more than what it was listed for. Foreclosure ensued, Jane declared bankruptcy, and the property was mired in legal tangles for years.
While the home’s eventual fate was tied up in the courts, it was rented out to a professional party host. He held wild (and often illegal) bashes on the premises, with guests invited through social media and admission charged at the door.
The lender eventually took possession of the home, and when bank representatives went to evict the tenant, he resisted and wouldn’t allow anyone in—not even the sheriff. He posted a sign on the gate threatening violence and stated trespassers would be prosecuted and subject to military law. He also had big dogs patrolling the premises.
The police stormed the property with a SWAT team, helicopters, and black vans. The tenant was found hiding in one of the house’s many nooks and was hauled off to jail.
All the illicit partying left the home in a rather sorry state. Savvy developers acquired the home from the bank for $2,575,000 in June 2017, and worked wonders on it. Its best features were preserved and upgraded, while new luxurious amenities were added.
The abundant redwood in the home was preserved and carefully treated; it now resembles muted-gray driftwood. The lighter, brighter color scheme reflects, rather than absorbs, the sunlight from the numerous windows and skylights.
The media room with a sunken seating area, which was once used as a performance pit for acoustic guitar players, remains intact. However it’s been freshened up with lighter wood, a large viewing screen, and a new wet bar.
The stone fireplace in the living room and the white bricks on the fireplace in the family room and kitchen were left intact. Those elements were seamlessly integrated into the home’s new “contemporary and current color scheme.”
A grand master suite and a junior master suite with a gorgeous view were added, as were two children’s bedrooms with lofts and ladders.
There are also fountains, waterfalls, and a gorgeous pool out back. The home sits on an acre lot off Ventura Boulevard, and happens to be located adjacent to Vin Diesel‘s multimillion-dollar spread.
Petty died in 2017; he was 66. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2002, and his hits, including “I Won’t Back Down,” “Free Fallin,’” and “American Girl,” have become timeless classics.