It appears that the home never sold, and the listing eventually disappeared over the rainbow.
However, it popped back on the market last month with a sizable price increase. When it went up for a sale in April, the price was $899,999—a figure that’s since been reduced to $850,000.
Any improvements over the past four years are not immediately evident. Perhaps the sellers are counting on a value boosted by the exodus out of L.A. as a result of the pandemic.
The home was originally built in 1915, and has been expanded over the years to include a main house and a guesthouse. In total, it includes nine bedrooms, two full bathrooms. and two half-bathrooms.
The last time the property changed hands was in 2009, when it sold for $125,000.
What drew Garland’s family to the unassuming town, far away from the glitter of Hollywood, in the first place?
Her parents, Frank and Ethel Gumm, moved from Grand Rapids, MN, to Southern California in 1926, with visions of family success in show business. They sought fame for their three talented daughters, Mary Jane, Virginia, and the youngest, little Judy, née Frances Ethel Gumm.
The Gumm family searched in Hollywood-adjacent suburbs, including Glendale and West Hollywood, before they finally found a place they could afford, in the Antelope Valley. They leased the 500-seat Lancaster Theater, where “The Gumm Sisters” became a star attraction.
Gumm also bought this charming home on Cedar Avenue, just down the street from their theater. Today, Lancaster’s Performing Arts Center is still in the same area.
The family lived in the Cedar Avenue house and performed in their nearby theater from from 1926 to about 1933, singing and dancing for talent scouts. They also commuted into Hollywood for auditions, performances, and dance lessons.
Eventually, the little troupe changed its name from to the Garland Sisters, and once the sisters began booking regular vaudeville gigs in Los Angeles, they were able to move closer to Hollywood. In 1935, Judy Garland signed with MGM at the tender age of 13, and the rest is history.
Today the property sits squarely in Lancaster’s Redevelopment District, close to dining, shopping, and public transportation.
Some of the home’s original features remain, including some wood paneling, windows, molding, wood floors and a lovely built-in buffet.
Another perk that makes this property unusual is a basement—rare in California homes—which can be used for storage.
The listing agent, Mark Chappell of Keller Williams Realty Antelope Valley, suggests renting out some of those nine bedrooms, guesthouse style. The buyer will have to determine what the future holds for this property in a redevelopment district.
Chappell helpfully notes in the listing details: “Opportunity knocks!” Will Garland’s childhood home remain intact if a developer pursues this opportunity? Stay tuned.