This Is How Much Money the U.S. President Makes

You’ve probably asked yourself at least once, “How much does the president make?” Well, the answer might surprise you.

Being the President of the United States isn’t your typical nine to five job. You have to work long hours, have a huge amount of responsibility, and are constantly in the public eye. Once elected, the president basically works non-stop for four years. So yes, their annual salary is going to be higher than your average working American. But how much does the president make? While it is a high number it might not be as high as one would assume for the amount of work they do. Also, check out these presidential firsts you probably never knew about.

How much does the president make?

The last three presidents elected to office—Donald Trump, Barack Obama, and George W. Bush—have all made $400,000 a year in salary. The president also gets an additional expense allowance every year of $50,000. On top of that, they get free housing in the White House, free transportation, and free health care administrated by the private medical team available in the White House. Unsurprisingly, that puts their job in the top 1 percent of yearly salaries.

How much did past presidents make?

Since the first president was elected in 1789 there have been five pay raises, the most recent in 2001. It might seem like past presidents didn’t make that much, but if you take inflation into account, that amount of money in 1789 would be worth a lot more today. Check out these hidden talents of 24 U.S. presidents.

1789: $25,000

1873: $50,000

1909: $75,000

1949: $100,000

1969: $200,000

2001: $400,000

What do they use their salary for?

Many presidential candidates are already wealthy so if elected, they don’t really need a salary to help them get by. Some of the wealthier presidents have chosen to donate their salary or portions of their salary. President Trump has donated a quarter of his presidential salary to institutions like the National Park Service and the Department of Homeland Security. (He still makes money from his hotels and other properties.)

How do presidents make money after office?

You know that the president gets paid while in office, but how much do they make once their final term is up? After they leave the White House, presidents receive a pension of $205,800 a year. On top of that, many former presidents make money by doing additional things such as speeches, writing books, or working in film or television. Find out more about unlikely jobs presidents have had after leaving office.

Sources:

Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is an Associate Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She writes for rd.com, helps lead the editorial relationship with our partners, manages our year-round interns, and keeps the hundreds of pieces of content our team produces every month organized. In her free time, she likes exploring the seacoast of Maine where she lives and works remotely full time and snuggling up on the couch with her corgi, Eggo, to watch HGTV or The Office.