Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding is going to be costing a pretty penny – more than $58 million to be exact – and given the royal family’s collective lack of formal employment, it has to be asked: Where does all of their money come from?
Are they growing a magical money tree we don’t know about?
And if yes, are they available to buy at IKEA?
Still, Rowling has Harry Potter, while we’re still trying to figure out what it is that the Queen, 92, and the rest of the royals actually do that makes them so goddamn rich.
Well, their money comes from quite a few places – mainly the British government and their own private estates.
The Queen receives income from three main sources – the Sovereign Grant, the Duchy of Lancaster estate and her personal property and investments.
The Sovereign Grant comes from the government in the form of an annual lump sum, and is supposed to cover things like travel, security, staff and the general upkeep of the palaces.
For the 2016 to 2017 fiscal year, she received $77 million tax-free, but this was increased to $137 million this year, in order to foot the bill for a major renovation of Buckingham Palace.
Another source of income is the Duchy of Lancaster, which is a portfolio of commercial, agricultural and residential properties dating back to 1265.
The Queen earned $34 million from the Duchy of Lancaster during the most recent fiscal year, which she used for official and private expenses, as well as to cover some of the costs racked up by the rest of her family.
Hey, Prince Charles’ martinis aren’t going to pay for themselves.
She also owns quite a few pricey properties – Balmoral Castle in Scotland, and the Sandringham Estate in England – and has a nice collection of expensive stamps, art and stocks.
Just don’t expect to see her whipping her wallet out anytime soon, though.
According to The Sun, the Queen only carries a five pound note with her on Sundays – which her butler irons and then neatly folds – so she can make a donation when the collection tray is passed around at church.
Meanwhile, the Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, 96, was given an annual allowance of $653,000 up until his retirement last year.
But it’s not just the Queen who pockets a cushy income. More than 90 percent of Prince Charles‘ income comes from the Duchy of Cornwall, which is a private estate consisting of islands and rental cottages.
In the most recent fiscal year, Charles and Camilla, 70, earned $37 million from the estate.
They were also given $2.4 million from the Queen’s Sovereign Grant, and another $839,000 from several British government departments.
The Sovereign Grant is used for their travel and property expenses, while the government money is put towards official overseas visits and the salaries of military personnel, who are tasked with the job of protecting the royals.
Charles, 69, also gives roughly $11 million each year to his kids, William, 35, and Harry, 33. So, the next time your parents complain about having to lend you money, just show them this.
But don’t forget, Meghan, 36, has money of her own, too. She earned around $669,000 a year while filming Suits.
William and Harry also have inheritance money from their late mum, Princess Diana, which they can also fall back on.
As for the rest of the family, most of them work real jobs.
Princess Beatrice works in business, while Princess Eugenie works in the art world.
The Queen is hoping the next generation of royals will forge careers for themselves out in the real world, so they will be more financially independent.