Jennifer Lopez Homeless? Singer Worth $250 Million Started Out With Nothing; Lived At Dance Studio, Broke [VIDEO & PHOTOS]

By Noelle Chehab July 9, 2013 5:57 PM EDT
Jennifer Lopez may be worth $250 million, but she started her career homeless sleeping on the couch of her dance studio. (Photo: Reuters)
Jennifer Lopez may be worth $250 million, but she started her career homeless sleeping on the couch of her dance studio. (Photo: Reuters)

Jennifer Lopez is worth nearly $250 million but it wasn't always fame and fortune for Jenny from the block, and the international star has now admitted that she started her career homeless.

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Lopez said that breaking into the business was no easy feat, especially given her modest upbringing and her parents' insistence on education. "My mom and I butted heads. I didn't want to go to college - I wanted to try dance full-time," Lopez said. "So she and I had a break." At 18-years-old Lopez perhaps sensed the stardom that was to come, and opted to leave home in order to see it come into reality.

Jennifer Lopez was homeless before she got her big break as a dancer, and ultimately became a singer, actress and 'American Idol' judge. (Photo: Reuters)
Jennifer Lopez was homeless before she got her big break as a dancer, and ultimately became a singer, actress and 'American Idol' judge. (Photo: Reuters)

"I started sleeping on the sofa in the dance studio. I was homeless, but I told her, 'This is what I have to do,'" Lopez said. "A few months later, I landed a job dancing in Europe. When I got back, I booked In Living Color. I became a Fly Girl and moved to L.A. It all happened in a year," the 'Live It Up' singer explained. Although Lopez certainly relished in her much-earned success, she said the transition from the Bronx where she grew up to the West Coast for her career was a tough adjustment.

"I hated L.A. I was asking, 'Where's the store for milk? Don't you guys walk on the street?'" the New York native explained. "Now I love Los Angeles, but it doesn't give me strength the way the Bronx did. All the strength that I needed for life, I got from that neighborhood,'" Jenny from the block said. Nowadays Lopez has acclimated into a high-profile lifestyle that affords her to visit cities across the globe. The 43-year-old has found success as a singer, actress and a judge on American Idol proving there's not much she can't take on.

Jennifer Lopez overcame being homeless, but said that her tough upbringing in the Bronx has shaped how she raises her two children Max and Emme. (Photo: Reuters)
Jennifer Lopez overcame being homeless, but said that her tough upbringing in the Bronx has shaped how she raises her two children Max and Emme. (Photo: Reuters)

Lopez 5-year-old twins Max and Emma are also something to be proud of for the mom who manages to juggle work and home, and she said that instilling sound values into her kids is of paramount importance. "I think a lot about teaching my kids to work hard. I've learned something about kids — they don't do what you say; they do what you do," Lopez explained, crediting watching her parents work ethic as the reason for her success.

"I watched my parents. My dad worked nights, and I was aware of how much he was doing for us," Lopez revealed. "My mom was a Tupperware lady and also worked at the school. I always felt that I couldn't let them down," she said. And at the end of the day, explained Lopez, it was the shining examples that her parents provided that got her where she is today. "I had a natural discipline from early on. I was always training for something," Lopez said.

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