The purchase price for Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos' new Beverly Hills mansion has finally cleared public records, and it was far below the "close to $30 million" figure that the Los Angeles Times' Ruth Ryon had reported in April.

In a Big Time Listings exclusive, we can report that Bezos paid $24,450,000 through his Redwood Trust for the seven-bedroom, 11,891-square-foot Spanish-style house at 930 N. Alpine Drive in the flats of Beverly Hills, according to the Los Angeles County Recorder's office.

We first wrote about the house on April 15, shortly after the

Los Angeles Times' Ryon broke the story. Bezos purchased the house and 2.03-acre property, which abuts the rear of actor Tom Cruise's longtime residence at 918 N. Alpine Drive--a 6,685-square-foot house that he has rented since 2001--from money manager Rick Guerin, according to public records.

We're puzzled about how the Times got Bezos' purchase price so wrong. It's not likely that one of Ryon's many real estate agent sources guided her wrong. Instead, we suspect that Ryon merely assumed a purchase price based on the property's last listing price (especially given that this mansion had been listed for $28 million and $31 million in its final months before it was sold). We've noticed that when a high-profile L.A-area celebrity real estate purchase closes but a final sale price isn't immediately made public, Ryon tends to put a "close to" or an "about" disclaimer in front of the purchase price that she reports--an amount that clearly is merely her estimate of its purchase price (although she never states it that way). As the Bezos purchase price demonstrates, that can be a foolish thing to do if a property's buyer winds up getting a good deal and purchasing it for far below the listing price. In no real estate world, is $24,450,000 "close to" $30 million.

As is often the case, we give a shout-out to Your Mama over at the Real Estalker (http://realestalker.blogspot.com/2007/02/real-estate-pornography-viii.html) for writing about this property back in February, well before anyone knew that Bezos would wind up buying it. And check out the property's listing sheet here.