New York — When it comes to cars, tunnels and rockets, Elon Musk thinks big. The same’s true for his household finances. The billionaire recently took out $61m in mortgages on five properties in California, four in the Bel Air neighborhood of Los Angeles and one in Hillsborough, near the Bay Area. The Morgan Stanley loans, signed in the final days of 2018, represent about $50m in new borrowing. One refinancing on a more than 18,500m2 property he bought in 2012 for $17m turned a $10m loan into a $19.5m debt. His monthly payment? About $180,000. The loans show how even the wealthiest people use mortgages to maintain liquidity. Musk, with a $23.4bn fortune, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, is among ultra-wealthy property owners including Mark Zuckerberg, Ken Griffin, and Beyoncé and Jay-Z, who have taken out monster mortgages. Citadel founder Griffin stands out, with two secured in 2016 for a total of about $114m. Representatives for Musk at Tesla didn’t respond to e-mail...

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