Queen Elizabeth faces on every note and coin in the United Kingdom, but as Britain’s longest reigning monarch marks 70 years on the throne. Still little is known about how much money she has personally, how she gets it and who stands to inherit it. The queen has a lot of wealth which is held in trust on her behalf and she also has her personal investments which are held in things like bank accounts of which very little is known.
What we do know from public records is that the Queen receives $100 million dollars from the UK government each year. Most estimates then put her net worth in the hundreds of millions, but pinpointing an exact figure is a royal headache.
Source of wealth
The first thing to understand is that the queen’s income derives from both public and private assets. A large amount of it comes from something called the Sovereign Grant. Here’s how that works. In the 1700s, the monarchy handed over revenues from swathes of land to the government known as the Crown Estate. Each year the government pays a percentage of the profits made on those assets back to the monarchy. That annual income is known as the sovereign grant.
Last year it totaled more than $107 million Queen’s official duties and maintain royal residences like Buckingham Palace, which is held in trust for the reigning monarch. The queen does not personally own the properties making up the crown estate. And therefore wouldn’t be able to sell them for her own financial gain. Unlike the two properties, she does own Sandringham House in Norfolk and Balmoral castle in Scotland. Each is valued between 66 $79 million by one royal expert.
Although a potential market price for this type of asset is difficult to determine. Prince Albert bought Balmoral estate in 1850 to 80,000 acre preserve in the Scottish highlands. Has since been the holiday retreat for Britain’s ruling families, Balmoral and Sandringham to properties that are very close to the queen’s heart.
Properties transfer to Prince Charles
She spends her summers in Balmoral and traditionally spends christmas at Sandringham. The two estates passed from monarch to monarch until Edward the eight’s abdication in 1936. When a financial settlement saw them transferred his brother and Elizabeth’s father, George. If precedent is upheld, both properties would be inherited by her eldest son and heir, Prince Charles. And their true value will remain unknown Charles would also inherit the duchy of Lancaster, almost 45,000 acres of commercial agricultural and residential properties in England, and Wales, privately owned by the Queen last year.
It netted her nearly $27 million dollars mainly through rent. The duchy of Lancaster is effectively a huge tract of land which is held in her name and pays her an annual income. This helps fund her lifestyle on top of that Elizabeth receives money from her personal investment portfolio and private estates. The value of these and what they yielded an income is undisclosed.
Does Queen have to pay taxes?
She doesn’t have to pay tax on any of this. But since 1992 has voluntarily paid income tax and capital gains tax. After deducting money spent for official purposes. That decision came amid a recession and discontent among the public towards the royal family’s wealth. The queen has promised to also voluntarily pay inheritance tax on any private assets not passed on to prince Charles.
Actual wealth worth
We don’t know what those assets are though, or who among her, many relatives might inherit them. The palace won’t comment on the contents of the monarchs will or inheritance plans. They say it’s a private matter and unlike other UK citizens, the royal family don’t have to make their wills public. For this reason,
we may never know exactly how much the queen is truly worth.
But even if we can’t identify her precise worth, the royal finances are looking healthy as the queen celebrates her platinum jubilee. The Sunday Times Rich List estimated the Queen’s net worth is the equivalent of $466 million dollars. And while the duchy of Lancaster saw revenue dropped during the pandemic. According to its financial records, income from that has been turning upwards over the past decade. At the end of the day, the monarchy is a private family, and they are unlikely to share any granular details of their wealth with the British public. And that probably won’t change anytime soon.