All-star realtor Madison Hildebrand set his sights here
When we first met Madison Hildebrand, uber successful realtor and a star of the hit Bravo TV show “Million Dollar Listing,” it was more of a lay-down than a sit down. At our cover photo shoot, Madison was striking a pose stretched out in the modern bathtub (fully clothed!) of one of his multi-million dollar Malibu listings, perfectly at ease among the 5 bedroom, 8 bathroom estate set on a 100-foot cliff, with unobstructed vistas of the Pacific. Madison was simultaneously hosting a broker’s open house, religiously checking his cell, casually throwing directions to assistants and popping in and out for wardrobe changes. He also seemed perfectly at ease among this hustle and bustle, congruent with his every day.
For the most part, Madison’s busy days come courtesy of his everything-he-touches-turns-to-gold real estate career—consisting of a luxury brokerage company, multiple real estate lifestyle brands and of course his ongoing role on “Million Dollar Listing.”
And there’s more. Madison is a fourth-year ambassador for DocuSign and endorses the Go Smile toothbrush. But he’s not all mogul all the time. Madison is dedicated to volunteering and philanthropy—both in Malibu and beyond. He sits on the board of the Boys and Girls Club of Malibu and is an ambassador for and active member of Give Back Homes—“It’s like a Habitat for Humanity for the realtor community,” Madison explains. Then, of course, there is the time he spends with his two Doberman rescues, Maya and Mr. Prince.
How did it all come to be? The foundation for his success took root during Madison’s college years at Pepperdine University, when as a college sophomore and advertising major, he realized the insanity of the rental prices for a Malibu property. “I did some looking and some calculations,” explains Madison, “to realize that purchasing a place and paying mortgage was not that much more than rent and the money would be going toward an investment.”
So he convinced his parents—his father had a keen interest in real estate as well—to purchase a place. When he graduated, he did the math again and figured that even with splitting the commission, “I would make more than I would have working for a year in advertising,” he says. Still, it was not to be…yet. His parents thought he needed to do something more productive with a college education. So Madison was left to figure out his next step.
He dipped his toe in hospitality before taking a self-imposed, and ironically homeless, break. “I needed to clear my head and moved to the Dominican Republic. I slept on the beach, speared my own fish, ate tomatoes and read books. Crazy story, right?” Maybe crazy, but effective. The time he spent there, helped him realize that “real estate felt right,” says Madison and it fell into place when he got back.
Madison was tapped for “Million Dollar Listing” for its first season in 2006, leaving the drama-filled show after Season 6, then returning full-time in Season 9 on his own terms. After years on the show, he considers the crew and producers extended family although he still can’t say the same for his co-stars. “We have had our differences and we all play a role to make the show what it is.”
His next role and latest venture, a property development company called Malibu Modern by Madison, brings Malibu modern design to West Hollywood bungalows. Set with a full design and business team, we are thinking that Madison’s version of the house-flipping craze might be the next hottest TV spin-off.
Anything seems possible—in a bathtub, on a cliff over the beach, in Malibu.