25 Richest Presidents In US History

Posted by , Updated on March 24, 2024

The wealthiest presidents usually did not acquire their wealth through politics. Several of them faced financial difficulties or even bankruptcy after their presidency, while others managed to increase their wealth significantly. It’s common knowledge that former presidents still receive a salary after their term ends, yet this doesn’t necessarily mean they’re extremely rich. Before the era of Richard Nixon, many presidents accumulated wealth through marriage, investment or land ownership. Nowadays, presidents increase their earnings with speaking engagements and book deals. Interested in finding out the top in the ranking of wealth? Check out the list of the 25 Richest Presidents in US history.

Please note that net worth figures are in today’s dollars. 


Gerald Ford - $7 Million

gerald fordSource: https://www.celebritynetworth.com/richest-politicians/republicans/gerald-ford-net-worth/, http://www.businessinsider.com/gerald-ford-changed-everything-by-making-money-off-his-presidency-2015-6

Gerald Ford made a life-long career in politics before reaching the highest office in the land. While his presidency was created out of Richard Nixon’s Watergate scandal, Ford used it to his advantage and figured out how to use the presidency to create a whole lot of money by getting paid at events and sitting on corporate boards. Within a year of leaving office, he had earned $1 million, bringing his total net worth to $7 million.


Dwight Eisenhower - $8 Million

dwight eisenhowerSource: http://247wallst.com/banking-finance/2010/05/17/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-washington-to-obama/5/

Dwight Eisenhower never had any inherited wealth and was a life-long military man, helping America win World War II. It’s assumed his wealth came from the military and the large farm he owned near Gettysburg, Pennslyvania.


James K. Polk - $11 Million

james k polkSource: http://247wallst.com/banking-finance/2010/05/17/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-washington-to-obama/2/

James K. Polk inherited some of his wealth from his wealthy father but also earned even more money from being the speaker of the house, governor of Tennessee, and owning 920 acres of land.


Barack Obama - $12 Million

barack obamaSource: http://www.newsweek.com/how-much-money-barack-michelle-obama-networth-trump-capitalism-pay-wall-street-591762

Barack Obama made significantly less money before and as President than afterward. Once he left the White House, his net worth skyrocketed with the high price tag book signings and speeches. In total, his current net worth is estimated to be $12 million.


Ronald Reagan - $15 Million

ronald reaganSource: https://onlinebusiness.american.edu/blog/presidents-net-worth/

As a longtime actor turned politician, Ronald Reagan built quite a large sum of money before entering the White House. He had around $11 million to his name at the time of his election and grew that to $15 million by the time of his death.


Richard Nixon - $17 Million

nixonSource: http://jfk.hood.edu/Collection/White%20Materials/Watergate/Watergate%20Items%2009122%20to%2009440/Watergate%2009390.pdf

Richard Nixon became monstrously more wealthy after becoming President than before, racking up $17 million by the time of his death. He accrued most of it through tax write-offs and real estate investments.


John Adams - $19 Million

john adamsSource: http://247wallst.com/banking-finance/2010/05/17/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-washington-to-obama/2/

While John Adams was a lawyer, politician, and second President of the United States, most of his wealth came from a hefty inheritance, his wife being a member of a prestigious family, and his 40-acre farm known as Peacefield. He had a $19 million net worth.


John Quincy Adams - $23 Million

john quincy adamsSource: http://247wallst.com/banking-finance/2010/05/17/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-washington-to-obama/2/

Son of John Adams, John Quincy Adams essentially inherited all of his father’s wealth and land while also benefiting from his wife’s wealthy heritage as well. His net worth was $23 million in total.


George H.W. Bush - $26 Million

george h w bushSource: https://onlinebusiness.american.edu/blog/presidents-net-worth/, https://www.therichest.com/celebnetworth/politician/president/george-h-w-bush-net-worth/

Graduating from Yale University, George H.W. Bush became a millionaire at the age of 40 through the oil industry, but it was after the presidency that his wealth skyrocketed due to paid speeches. His net worth at the present time is $26 million.


James Monroe - $27 Million

james monroeSource: http://247wallst.com/banking-finance/2010/05/17/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-washington-to-obama/2/

James Monroe married into wealth but also gained a significant sum during his time as president. Unfortunately, he retired in extreme debt and had to sell off his 3,500 acres. Still, he left with a net worth of $27 million.


Grover Cleveland - $28 Million

grover clevelandSource: https://www.deseretnews.com/top/2579/2/Grover-Cleveland-1885-1889-1893-1897-The-15-richest-US-presidents.html

Most of Grover Cleveland’s $28 million wealth came from the practice of the law, but he was also married to the daughter of a wealthy lawyer and sold off an estate near Washington D.C. for a large profit.


Martin Van Buren - $29 Million

martin van burenSource: https://www.cheatsheet.com/money-career/richest-american-presidents.html/?a=viewall

Martin Van Buren made most of his wealth off of his successful career as a lawyer and politician. He raked in the large sum of $29 million when all was said and done.


George W. Bush - $35 Million

george w bushSource: https://www.bankrate.com/lifestyle/celebrity-money/george-w-bush-net-worth/

George W. Bush earned much of his wealth from the oil industry, creating his own oil company called Bush Exploration. However, in his post-presidency, he also raked in a solid income from speaking engagements and being an owner of the Texas Rangers. His net worth is currently at $35 million.


John Tyler - $57 Million

john tylerSource: https://www.csmonitor.com/Business/2012/0220/Presidents-Day-trivia-Who-were-the-10-richest-US-presidents/John-Tyler-51-million

The first man to become president due to the death of another president, John Tyler’s wealth was acquired more from marriage and inheritance than politics. His father gave him a 1,000-acre tobacco plantation and his wife was also rather wealthy. His net worth was $57 million.


Franklin Delano Roosevelt - $60 Million

fdrSource: https://www.therichest.com/celebnetworth/politician/president/franklin-d-roosevelt-net-worth/, https://classroom.synonym.com/what-was-the-source-of-the-fdr-family-wealth-12078550.html

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was born into immense wealth and privilege. His father’s and mother’s sides of the family were both particularly wealthy, especially the Delanos. He also gained an enormous wealth from his marriage to Eleanor. Overall, his net worth reached $60 million.


Herbert Hoover - $75 Million

herbert hooverSource: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-net-worth-of-the-american-presidents-from-washington-to-obama-2010-5#31st-herbert-clark-hoover-1929-1933-75-million-net-worth-30

Herbert Hoover gained all of his wealth through the mining industry. He was a mining company executive and had several holdings in other mining companies. During his presidency, he gave away his Presidential salary to charity. His total net worth was $75 million.


Bill Clinton - $80 Million

Bill_ClintonSource: https://www.bankrate.com/lifestyle/celebrity-money/bill-clinton-net-worth/

Bill Clinton’s wealth primarily comes from book sales, speaking engagements, and consulting fees. He’s paid between $150,000 to $700,000 per speech. His overall net worth is $80 million.


Lyndon Baines Johnson - $98 Million

lyndon johnsonSource: https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/10-richest-us-presidents-f1C7100851

Lyndon Baines Johnson didn’t inherit his wealth as his father lost most of his when LBJ was just a boy. However, over time Johnson was able to buy 1,500 acres of land and a radio and television station. He also had holdings in livestock and private aircrafts. He had a net worth of $98 million.


James Madison - $101 Million

james madisonSource: https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/10-richest-us-presidents-f1C7100851

Being the largest landowner in Orange County, Virginia, with over 5,000 acres, it’s safe to say James Madison was extremely wealthy. He also made significant wealth in his political life as secretary of state and president. While he lost some of his wealth at the end of his life, he still had a net worth of $101 million.


Andrew Jackson - $119 million

andrew jacksonSource: http://business.time.com/2014/02/15/the-10-richest-presidents-in-american-history/

Many during his time considered Andrew Jackson to be deeply connected with the everyman, but he still amassed a great deal of wealth in his lifetime. He made his money through the military, marrying into wealth, and buying large sums of land. His total net worth was $119 million.


Theodore Roosevelt - $125 Million

teddy rooseveltSource: https://www.deseretnews.com/top/2579/12/Theodore-Roosevelt-1901-1909-The-15-richest-US-presidents.html

Being part of a wealthy family, most of Theodore Roosevelt’s wealth came from his inheritance. While he had a net worth of $125 million, he wasn’t very good with money and lost a lot of it on a bad investment in the Dakotas.


Thomas Jefferson - $212 Million

thomas jeffersonSource: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2015/02/22/247-wall-st-richest-presidents/23484127/

The writer of the Declaration of Independence and third President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson made most of his money through an inheritance from his father. He gained the Monticello Estate which had 3,000 acres and several dozen slaves. By the end of his life, he was drowning in debt. All things considered, his net worth still came out to $212 million.


George Washington - $525 Million

george washingtonSource: http://www.businessinsider.com/george-washington-richest-president-in-us-history-2016-6

George Washington, of course, was the United States’ first president, and for a long time, he remained the wealthiest president. He earned one of the largest salaries in U.S. history as well as owned 50,000 acres of land. It all culminated into a whopping $525 million net worth.


John F. Kennedy - $1 Billion

jfkSource: https://nypost.com/2015/06/01/jfk-was-way-richer-than-the-wealthiest-2016-candidate/

John F. Kennedy’s net worth is a tricky subject as much of it depends on what he would have received from his father’s inheritance if he hadn’t died. He also married into money with Jacqueline. Taking into account his inheritance, it’s estimated JFK had a net worth of $1 billion.


Donald Trump - $3.1 Billion

donald trumpSource: https://www.forbes.com/donald-trump/#710900462899

Donald Trump is hands down the wealthiest United States president in history and will likely keep that spot for some time. Before becoming president, he inherited a great deal from his father and invested much of it in real estate and resorts. His total net worth is $3.1 billion.

25 – 2. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain), 1. Michael Vadon, Donald Trump August 19, 2015 (cropped), CC BY-SA 2.0