The members of the British royal family are widely considered to be the most powerful people in Britain, despite the fact that it seems that many members of the famous family are only considered to be figureheads of the government.
The Queen approves many of the laws that pass through parliament on a regular basis but their income comes from the taxpayers of the United Kingdom. This means that much of the time many different members of The royal family are reduced to public appearances and opening's of different venues to ensure that the moral of the country is always high and that they are always seen to be a crucial part of the upkeep of the country.
The finances of the family, who basically live off the British people, is something that has been kept secret for a number of years. Many of the things going on both inside and outside of Buckingham Palace that have not been shared publicly.
The royal family still seems to uphold traditional values, which means that they feel that they are things that should never be shared outside of their walls. There have been a number of secrets kept over the last few years centering around their use of money. The following list looks at 15 secrets that the British royal family has been trying to hide over the past few decades when it comes to their finances. Some of these are secrets that many of us would have tried to keep if we had the option to as well.
15 The Royal Family Has Been Forced To Reuse Outfits
For many women who are high up in society, it is thought that they are not able to re-wear outfits that they have already been seen out wearing in public. It seems that the Queen's issues with her finances have reached the point where she has been forced to re-wear some of her outfits.
Back in 2013, The Queen wore the same pink coat and hat for four different engagements, looking like she had been forced to recycle a number of her clothing options. She also recycled an outfit in 2011, wearing a primrose yellow outfit to her grandson William's wedding and during her tour of Australia as well. The fact that the family has been forced to budget out their money in recent years has resulted in The Queen leading by example.
14 The Royal Family Shops At IKEA
It's a crazy experience when the public sees a celebrity shopping in the same stores that they do, especially since it is widely thought that many celebs who have a lot of money get other people to do shopping for them or have most of their furniture custom made.
It was revealed last week during a tour of Sweden that Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton actually shopped at IKEA for their children's bedroom furniture. IKEA isn't usually a place where you would spot the Duke and Duchess, which means that becoming parents has really changed their outlook. There was recently a debate about the fact that in the U.K., many families are only allowed to claim benefits for two children, so it is unknown what position Kate and William will be in when their third child is born later this year. Perhaps they are shopping in IKEA to prepare themselves for the cut in their finances.
13 The Royals Refuse To Waste Food
The royals may be able to burn through millions of pounds but it seems that they are not the kind of family who likes to waste food. According to Carolyn Robb, who was a chef at the palace for more than a decade, the family is very big on Tupperware.
She revealed that it was mostly Prince Charles that pushed for the family to eat leftovers too: "Prince Charles was very economical and very much believed that nothing should go to waste. If we made roasted lamb and there were leftovers, we'd probably go and make Shepard's pie the next night." The family is also a big fan of homemade food. They are not the kind of people who would want to eat anything that was processed. It's quite unexpected to think that the royal family has been attempting to save money for a number of years but none of it has really worked.
12 The Family Doesn't Usually Travel In Style
It seems that many people are under the illusion that the royal family members have private jets and planes that they can rely on to take them wherever they need to go at any time when this isn't actually the case.
A new report has revealed that throughout the course of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's relationship, they have been forced to travel on airlines with the public and often in economy class. The family do have a private helicopter but with the price to use this soaring over the past few years, it seems that the family would rather rely on other means of transport. The Queen herself has been known to prefer to travel by train if she is able to get to her required destination by rail then she often opts to, rather than bring out any of her private means of transport. The report claims that the family has been changing a lot of things in their lives recently because they now need to begin saving money.
11 The Royal Family May Not Be As Financially Stable As Many Think
There have been a number of myths circulating about the royal family over the past few decades when it comes to how they are able to afford the lifestyles that they currently live and who exactly is paying for their daily living costs. These will be explained later in this list but it seems that back in 2014, a report by New York Daily News stated that the family was down to just $1.6 million which is less than £1 million.
The report stated that somehow the Queen's finances have managed to shrink from $58 million to less than $2 million in recent years, which has placed the family's spending under the microscope. Many experts claim that the family could now be forced to tighten their belts when it comes to spending, especially since the U.K. has only just been able to come out of their worst recession in history.
10 Meghan Markle Could Be An Issue For The Royal Family
Meghan Markle is set to marry into the royal family later this year after her engagement to Prince Harry was made public knowledge this past fall. It seems that the American could cause the royal family a number of issues over the next few years because she will continue to pay taxes to the United States, which could mean that foreign powers would be able to scrutinize the royal family’s secretive finances.
The actress has applied to become a British citizen but it seems that process could take a few years, unless she is given preferential treatment, which means that as a U.S. Citizen she will be forced to continue paying taxes in The United States and Canada. This also means that the U.S. Internal Revenue Service may gain access to sensitive information about the royal family's finances that could prove embarrassing if they were ever leaked to the public.
9 The Queen Has Been Forced To Put Up Signs Inside Buckingham Palace
It seems that the cost of energy for households all over the United Kingdom has caused a number of problems over the past few years as energy prices have soared and many families have been left unable to afford the heat for their property. It seems that the royal family has been affected by this as well.
A recent report by CNBC revealed that the Queen herself has been forced to put up signs in Buckingham Palace that read, "The attention is drawn of all members of staff to the need to switch off unwanted lights. By Order of The Master of The Household." There are also reports from her employees that stated that the Queen herself has taken to roaming the halls of the Palace and turning all of the lights off that aren't in use because she can't afford the electric bill for her home that has 775 rooms.
8 The Royal Family Is Worth $95 Billion
A report that was released last week suggests that while the royal family as a whole is worth $95 billion, the separate members of the family individually could only be worth around $1 billion altogether. This is because when working out their net worth, their concrete assets are also taken into account, which includes the 830,000-square-foot Buckingham Palace.
It is estimated that Queen Elizabeth II alone is worth $530 million, which is the most out of any member of the entire family. It seems that their net worth is still on the rise despite their recent issues with financial stability. It seems that there are other members of the family like Prince Charles, Prince William, and Kate Middleton who have been able to remain stable over the past few years because they rely on different income. Kate and Will have also welcomed two children over the past few years and their third is expected to arrive sometime later this year.
7 Sarah Ferguson Attempted To Sell Information About Her Ex-Husband
After her divorce from Prince Andrew, it seems that Sarah Ferguson was left without a penny to her name and was left with a decision of working for a living or coming up with a plan, which she did when she decided to sell access to her ex-husband to the press.
The nature of their divorce meant that she had zero income, so she decided that selling access to the media for $700 million was her best option. She remained friends with Andrew after the divorce but after he found out about her deal, the couple probably didn't see eye to eye again. This isn't the way the royal family would have been expected to act but Princess Diana was given £2o million following her divorce, so why was Sarah treated differently? And why was she forced to stoop to such levels when the royal family has such a vast net worth?
6 How Did The Royal Family Burn Through Their Money?
A damning report that was released a few years ago showed that the royal family had managed to burn through millions of pounds and the details of this spending were later released as well.
It seems that the royal family has spent millions of pounds on travel with their own private train service costing around £4.5 million pounds and their helicopter costing almost £3 million to maintain. It is thought that the utility bills for the Queen and her family have lifted over the past few years as well with the average cost being around £10 million annually. It seems that these numbers have gone through the roof over the past few years and have left many taxpayers wondering how the royal family will be able to control their spending over the next few years to ensure that they don't end up in debt in the future.
5 The Queen Doesn't Control Her Own Finances
According to a report that was released by The Independent back in 2010, the Queen doesn't actually control her own finances. It seems that Queen Elizabeth II was forced to give up the right to manage Buckingham Palace's financial affairs in a secret deal that she signed with Palace aides and the British government.
This deal means that there are now strict terms on how the Queen can spend the £38.2 million handed over by Parliament each year to pay for her staff and palaces. This document gives ministers the right to take over the management of the Queen's wealth if there is a disagreement as to how the money should be spent. It seems that this could have been used by ministers to force the Queen to cut back on spending or even to allow her to use her private wealth rather than the money given to her by parliament each year.
4 Prince Charles Has His Own Major Income Stream
Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales may share some of the income that his mother brings in from the Duchy of Lancaster and from the British taxpayers but it another set of properties called The Duchy of Cornwall helps Prince Charles to cover the expenses for his family as well as it continues to grow and welcome more members.
Much like Lancaster, the Duchy of Cornwall is another suite of properties owned by the royal family. These properties seem to help Charles cover the expenses of Harry, William, Kat, their children, his wife Camilla, and himself. The total income from this property in 2016 was around £34 million, which is in addition to the income that Charles already has. It seems that this is more than enough for the growing family and the future King of England to be able to live off.
3 The Queen's Off-Shore Accounts Scandal
The Queen receives almost £40 million a year from parliament, which allows her to pay for the cost of living in Buckingham Palace but it seems that this isn't enough. Last year, it was revealed that the Queen has an off-shore account, which had around £10 million of her wealth that no one actually knew anything about.
This cash was invested in the Cayman Islands and Bermuda by the Duchy Of Lancaster and has since provided her with an income and handles investments for her £500 million private estate. Some of questioned why the Queen needs to be investing in offshore finances, but it seems that there was nothing illegal about the activity and it wasn't a way for the Queen to avoid paying taxes. It just became an entire scandal that shed a bad light on the countries' finances that the royal family didn't need.
2 Where Does The Royal Family's Income Come From?
As part of a report that was released last year, it was revealed that it costs more than £300 million to support the royal family each year. The money comes from two different sources: the British government and private investments.
It seems that each year the royal family is given money called the Sovereign Grant. This comes from the treasury and is funded by taxpayers. The agreement is that the Queen gets the grant in exchange for surrendering all profits that she could have made from the Crown Estate and gains around 15% of it back. The rest of the income comes from private accounts that are called The Privy Purse, which includes the Duchy of Lancaster, a portfolio of land that's been in the royal family for hundreds of years. It includes residential, commercial, and agricultural properties that generated around £18 million pounds of their income back in 2016.
1 Prince Charles' Campaign To Get Rich
Back in 2010, it was revealed that as part of the budget, George Osborne intended to scrap the Civil List system was placed in 1760 when George III found himself in so much debt that he turned to Parliament to help him and they set up annual payments for the king instead.
It seems that over the past few decades, Prince Charles has been pressuring Parliament to take back the agreement and allow the royal family to gain 100% of the income that has been generated by the Duchy of Lancaster, instead of the 15% that they currently earn. This could make Charles or his son William the richest king that has ever been on the throne. However, it could also be a bad decision for Parliament to make since the Queen herself has mentioned that her son's lifestyle is something that she doesn't currently agree with.