In the summer of 2020, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle told the world they’re here to stay when the couple bought their first home in the U.S. While details are still relatively scarce about the dwelling, we’ve gleaned everything there is to know about Harry and Meghan’s new $14.7 million Santa Barbara residence.

Prior to purchasing their new home, Harry and Meghan had been hunkering down in a Beverly Hills mansion owned by their pal Tyler Perry. And since they have many other famous friends and her mom lives in the Los Angeles area, the prevailing assumption was that they would buy a home somewhere in the general LA/Hollywood vicinity. Ultimately, they decided to move a bit further north (around an hour-and-a-half north, to be precise). Still, many celebrities call Santa Barbara home, too. The area is considered ultra-exclusive due to the high cost of housing. According to U.S. News, it ranks only a 3.7 out of 10 on the value index for real estate.

So, what drew Harry and Meghan to the area? How’s raising Archie and baby Lilibet there? Let’s explore what we know so far about Harry and Meghan’s first home in the States.

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They didn’t just move in

With such a wild year in 2020, it’s little wonder how Harry and Meghan were able to buy and move into a new home basically unnoticed. As for how long they’ve been living in their Santa Barbara home, a rep for the couple told People the move took place in the summer of 2020, so almost two years and a half. “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex moved into their family home in July of this year,” said the rep at the time.

They craved privacy

One thing they most certainly wouldn’t have gotten in the Los Angeles area is privacy — there’s paparazzi lurking around every corner there, thanks to it serving as the unofficial headquarters for the TV and film industry. Santa Barbara, however, is much quieter… and less accessible. Explained their rep, “They have settled into the quiet privacy of their community since their arrival and hope that this will be respected by their neighbors, as well as for them as a family.”

They wanted somewhere more “intimate”

“Both loved the idea of finding somewhere smaller, perhaps closer to the sea,” Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand wrote in the couple’s bombshell biography Finding Freedom. And Page Six’s source noted Los Angeles never fit the bill, saying, “Harry and Meghan never intended to make Los Angeles their home. It was a good place for them to be upon their arrival in the U.S. to be close to Meghan’s mom.”

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