Photo Credit: Max Mumber | Indigo
There will never be a public release of any royally passed-down properties. This simply implies that the Royal family will be the only ones who are aware of whatever personal fortune the Queen may have possessed before her death last week.
Investing, art collections, diamonds, and two homes—Sandringham House in Norfolk and Balmoral Castle in Scotland—made up Queen Elizabeth’s fortune, which Forbes estimated to be worth over $500 million. The two homes belonged to the late King George VI, who left them to the Queen.
“[Royal wills] are hidden, so we have no idea actually what’s in them and what that’s worth, and that’s never ever made public,” stated author and lecturer from Lancaster University Laura Clancy.
However, King Charles III and his successor will now get the large majority of the riches held by the Royal family. A minimum of £18 billion ($21 billion) in assets, homes, and lands are expected to make up the whole wealth.
Prince William, the heir to the throne, simply got wealthier as the line of succession moved following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. The Duchy of Cornwall estate, which the prince inherited from his father, is already in his hands. Southwest England is home to the Duchy, a 140,000-acre estate.
King Edward III founded the estate in 1337, which is now worth $1.2 billion. Under the direction of the Duke of Cornwall, the estate’s earnings would be applied to public and private sector endeavors, with a focus on charitable endeavors. Now Prince William holds this position.
Under the Sovereign Grant
The Crown Estate, a £16.5 billion piece of real estate now belonging to King Charles III in his new capacity as king, accounts for most of the Royal Family’s wealth. However, according to a 1760 arrangement, the government would receive the estate’s earnings and then pay the king a share of that money in exchange. The Sovereign Grant is what this is termed.
The estate includes a sizable chunk of central London and the Welsh, Northern Irish, and English seabeds. A chief executive and commissioners, who are all chosen by the monarch in power or suggested by the current prime minister, make up the Crown Estate as a corporation.
The Crown Estate made about £313 million ($361 million) in revenue during the most recent fiscal year. In addition, the Queen received a Sovereign Grant from the UK government in the amount of around £86 million, or $100 million. The grant’s earnings, according to sources, are used to pay the Royal Family’s employees and manage their estates.
The Sovereign Grant once represented 15% of the Crown Estate’s overall profit. But in 2017, the take was raised to 25% to allow the Crown to pay for improvements and upkeep of Buckingham Palace.
The Duchy of Lancaster, worth £653 million or $764 million, is another holding of the new king in addition to the Crown Estate. The Duchy is a private estate built in 1265. Profits from the estate are used to fund additional costs not covered by the Sovereign Grant, as well as other costs paid by the Royal Family.
Royals have restrictions
Despite enjoying the advantages of being a part of the Royal family, there are still limitations on how they may handle their assets. For instance, the king could only spend the Sovereign Grant for official purposes. Additionally, he is not permitted in any way to accept the revenues from their duchies.
According to the Institute for Governments, the duchies’ revenues will be reinjected into the estates. Additionally, the UK Treasury should be consulted before the Royal Family makes any sizable transactions.
“Of course, voluntary income tax [is] not a fixed rate, and they don’t have to declare how much income they’re making their tax on. So actually, it’s just like plucking a figure out of thin air.”
Opinions expressed by Texas Today contributors are their own.