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Addison Montgomery Forbes (Kate Walsh) moved from Grey’s Anatomy’s medical drama to a more intimate setting on Private Practice in 2007. She went from the dreary weather of Seattle, Washington, to a bright, beautiful beachfront home in Malibu, California. However, many fans wonder if the characters in Private Practice, Addison and Sam (Taye Diggs), could afford such expensive houses.

Private Practice Addison Montgomery portrayed by Kate Walsh and Sam Bennett played by Taye Diggs
‘Private Practice’ Kate Walsh as Addison and Taye Diggs as Sam | Eric McCandless/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

‘Private Practice’ Addison Montgomery moved from Seattle, Washington to Malibu, California

During the last few episodes of Grey’s Anatomy Season 3, Addison takes a sabbatical from Seattle. She leaves to visit her old friends, Naomi (Audra McDonald) and Sam Bennett, in Los Angeles, California. Naomi is a fertility specialist, while Sam practices internal medicine. They both own and work at the Oceanside Wellness Group. Their private practice focuses on a whole-body approach to medicine.

While visiting, Addison signs onto a medical case with Naomi and ends up performing surgery. She falls in love with the small practice and the beachside life that her friends live in LA. 

Instead of returning to Grey’s Anatomy, Addison decides she needs a change in her life. She becomes the new OB/GYN at Oceanside Wellness and the spinoff medical series star of Private Practice

Addison and Sam’s oceanview, beachfront homes are a green screen on a set in LA

In the first season of Private Practice, Addison finds that her close friend, Sam, lives next door to her new beachfront home in Malibu. Viewers see the beautiful ocean waves crashing against the beach outside Addison and Sam’s outdoor living rooms.

However, the production designer for Private Practice, Gregory Van Horn, let fans on a small secret with a YouTube video. He gave a tour of her home for viewers, including the balcony overlooking the beach. 

“The blue screen out there is actually used to insert an ocean in post-production,” Van Horn told fans. “Remember, we are still on a soundstage in Hollywood. The deck below is Addison’s outdoor living room, considered another room in her house. It functions as a venue for parties and the occasional argument.”

Are Addison and Sam’s ‘Private Practice’ Malibu homes financially out of reach?

Addison is a double board-certified OB/GYN who specializes in maternal-fetal medicine. When she worked at Seattle Grace Hospital on Grey’s Anatomy, it was mentioned that she was one of the highest-paid surgeons in the Northwestern United States. The surgeon took a pay cut to work at Oceanside Wellness. However, she was the one to bail the practice out of financial trouble. 


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Addison was born into a very wealthy family, and her fortune on the show is estimated to be about 30 million dollars. According to Malibu Times, the average price for a home in 2011 was around 3 million dollars. Therefore, her Malibu beachfront home was not financially out of reach. 

However, the home next door, where Sam lived, probably was out of reach for the internal medicine doctor whose private practice almost went bankrupt. He also went through a divorce, which was probably costly. So, it’s hard to believe that he could afford a 3-4 million dollar home in Malibu.