Here's How Much Jared Kushner Is Really Worth

Jared Kushner has been one of the most criticized and derided characters in American politics. When he left his lucrative day job as a New York billionaire investor slash real estate scion to take an unpaid position in the White House under Donald Trump, it harpooned his reputation among the Manhattan elite.

The Atlantic called Kushner "Trump's most dangerous enabler." Vox remarked that "he keeps failing upward." He and wife Ivanka Trump were derided as utterly unqualified –- a two-headed nepotistic nightmare for the American experiment, derisively dubbed, "Javanka." Even inside the White House, he was getting it. Behind Kushner's back, Trump's firebrand former chief strategist Steven Bannon allegedly called the baby-faced billionaire a "cuck" and a "globalist" -– Bannon's lowest possible rating –- according to the Daily Beast.

During 45's time in office, Kushner was a key figure, taking on brokering peace in the Middle East and leading a coronavirus task force. And even before his father-in-law was sworn in, Kushner was involved in the political goings-on. "It's hard to overstate and hard to summarize Jared's role in the campaign," Peter Thiel told Forbes after Trump's 2016 win. "If Trump was the CEO, Jared was effectively the chief operating officer." 

Now that he's no longer working in the White House, Jared Kushner is getting back to the business world and tending to his massive fortune. And we mean massive.

The Kushner family empire

In 2016, Forbes listed the Kushner family's net worth at $1.8 billion. That includes Jared Kushner's substantial bankroll, but also tech wiz brother Josh Kushner, and their two parents. According to the outlet's breakdown of the Kushner crew's finances, about half of the fortune is tied up in New York and New Jersey real estate, some $1.15 billion. At the time, they had about $240 million invested in a health insurance startup — Josh's brainchild. Then there's The New York Observer, which the family purchased in 2006, according to The New York Times. (More on that later.) The final chunk of the family fortune is basically liquid: cash and extremely profitable capital investments, a staggering $420 million.

Jared's paternal grandparents, Joseph and Rae Kushner, were Jewish refugees who survived the Holocaust and immigrated to the US, ultimately settling in New Jersey. In the Garden State, Joseph launched a very successful construction business. Joseph and Rae's second son, Jared's father, was called Chanan, but the hospital Americanized the baby's name, dubbing him Charles Kushner. It wouldn't be long before young Charles would get into the family's line of work. "I walked the construction sites with my father at like 10 years old," he recounted to The Real Deal, "and then I assumed different responsibilities within the context of what my father's work was [Kushner's father was an independent builder]." Charles would go on to launch Kushner Companies in 1985.

Money matters sent Jared Kushner's father to jail

Things were good with Kushner Co. — Jared Kushner's official family umbrella company — until 2004 when it turned out the corporation wasn't exactly playing by the rules. Charles Kushner "pled guilty to tax evasion, illegal campaign contributions, and witness tampering," according to Forbes.

Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie actually handled the prosecution of Jared's dad and called it "one of the most loathsome, disgusting crimes" he'd ever been involved with during his legal career, via the Chicago Tribune. Charles' buffet of white-collar offenses is not what got Christie so heated though. It was the revenge Charles attempted to take on his own family.

When Charles learned his brother-in-law had been cooperating with prosecutors he hatched a devious plan for payback that involved arranging an encounter between a sex worker and his brother-in-law and filming the whole thing. The retaliation didn't help his case. He was convicted of a tax evasion plot in 2005 and spent 14 months in a federal prison in Alabama, according to Insider. Jared has defended his father, telling New York Magazine, "His siblings stole every piece of paper from his office, and they took it to the government. Siblings that he literally made wealthy for doing nothing. He gave them interests in the business for nothing." On his way out of office in 2020, Donald Trump granted Charles Kushner a pardon.

Jared Kushner's dad bought him a New York newspaper

Maybe Jared Kushner's father felt a little bad about the ruinous financial misdeeds and the whole sex worker sting thing, because the year after Charles Kushner was convicted for tax evasion and jury tampering, among other crimes, he bought his then 25-year-old son an entire newspaper business as a graduation present. At least that's what a former Kushner associate told Time.

When Charles Kushner was released from a federal penitentiary in 2006, Jared was still at New York University studying for double degrees in law and business. He graduated the next year. That's when Charles picked up a somewhat niche newspaper company, The New York Observer, for $10 million. He paid in cash for the daily paper — which was losing $2 million a year, according to The New York Times. The Times notes, "The paper's relatively small circulation — 50,000 — belies its influence, particularly in New York's media, political and real estate circles."

Given the Kushners had just suffered a serious reputation blight, the point of purchasing a print newspaper in 2006 is alleged to have had more to do with high society maneuvering in Manhattan than actual business. The paper, as an institution, explains Insider, "has long been seen as a means to help cement Jared's place among the upper crust of New York society and restore his family's reputation." Charles however vowed publicly to make the paper profitable and Jared took the periodical fully digital in 2016.

A disastrous first deal

Just after graduating in 2007, Jared Kushner's first major deal went very awry. Per Forbes, things started to go off the rails after he bought a building at 666 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan for $1.8 billion. Around that time, the US economy saw, as Investopedia put it, "the dominoes start to fall."

The following year, the housing market plummeted, and there was just too much credit being recklessly launched into the pockets of borrowers who couldn't pay it back. To compound things, big US banks had constructed a labyrinthine pyramid of securities schemes built atop all those bad underlying bets. As ordinary borrowers began to default, major banks began to fall, and the whole house of cards crumbled into a recession.

Somehow Jared was able to salvage most of his family's fortune. Kushner split the retail space in two and sold them separately. As recounted in Forbes, he offloaded the first piece in 2008, even as the crisis had only worsened, for $525 million. It's probably good Jared didn't panic and dump the whole property at once. By 2011 — after a huge bailout from the federal government — the market had recovered. Kushner got rid of the remaining pieces of the building in 2012 for $1.05 billion. Despite the terrible timing, Jared lost only about $250 million on a deal that could've meant total ruin.

The Kushner brothers rake in millions

The Kushner family is on its third generation of entrepreneurs and the cash keeps coming. And Jared might not even be the most successful millennial Kushner. In 2012, Jared's brother, Joshua Kushner, was a 26-year-old Harvard grad when he made a boatload of cash off Instagram.

Asking exactly how the super-rich make their money on tech and finance is sort of like pushing a particle physicist to explain quantum mechanics. As Forbes reported at the time, when Facebook bought Instagram in 2012 for $1 billion (and some stock options to sweeten the deal), Joshua's venture capital firm Thrive was involved in the transaction. The startup was less than two years old but the deal doubled its value. Jared's brother suddenly had a firm worth a staggering $500 million, according to the outlet. He also managed to raise $40 million for his next fund, Thrive II. What's more, he's gotten raves from his peers. "He has tremendous entrepreneurial instincts, he understands the perspective of founders and he's wickedly smart," Spotify founder Daniel Ek told the outlet.

Jared's sibling keeps the ball rolling. "Our ambitions are to help build businesses that will transform traditional industry," Joshua said in TechCrunch in 2012. Looks like those ambitions have helped build his fortune, too. As The New York Times reported in March 2021, the company has about $9 billion in assets — and they've yet to lose steam.

Jared Kushner's super-rich romance

Another thing the super-rich do to protect their wealth is to marry rich. It's a nice little insurance policy in case one of the other family fortunes goes belly up. And since both the Kushners and the Trumps have had their brushes with bankruptcy, maybe this was a bit of a mirror match on New York's high-net-worth dating scene. In 2007, Jared Kushner and Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump were introduced at a networking lunch by a friend. "They very innocently set us up thinking that our only interest in one another would be transactional," the former first daughter told Vogue in 2015. "Whenever we see them we're like, 'The best deal we ever made!'"

The couple initially split over religious differences, says Insider. Jared's family is modern Jewish Orthodox; Ivanka was Presbyterian. Kushner was pressured by his family to stay inside the lines. However, Jared eventually unleashed a stunning 5.22-carat ring, and the couple married in 2009. Ivanka converted that year and the couple has three children together. ​​"We both live in this fancy world," Ivanka told New York Magazine of their "mellow" romance. "But on a personal level, I don't think I could be with somebody — I know he couldn't be with somebody — who needed to be 'on' all the time." 

In 2019, Forbes listed her net worth at $375 million, and according to Celebrity Net Worth, Jared's at $800 million. Needless to say, the pair of entrepreneurs are set.

Jared and Ivanka make passive millions

How exactly Jared Kushner and his better half Ivanka Trump make all their millions became of great public interest when the two began working in the White House in 2016. And all those public disclosures necessary for their public-facing roles as high-level advisors in Donald Trump's administration gave the world a unique peek into the couple's finances.

In 2018, ethics filings showed just how much the couple was raking in during their White House stay — despite neither taking a salary for their official duties. During their first year in the White House, they did a staggering $147 million in transactions, mostly in real estate, according to The New York Times. The disclosures revealed the couple had $811 million in real estate in 2017, up from a measly $761 million in 2016, per the NYT. Their income was put somewhere between $82 million and $222 million — quite the margin of error. That range was also up from the prior year. In 2018, they saw a bit of a dip, but still brought in a good chunk of change: According to another New York Times report, their real estate was at $786 million, and their income fell in the $29 million to $135 million range.

However, as we'll see later, the White House stint wasn't all gravy for Kushner's bottom line.

Jared Kushner paid no taxes

Like a lot of America's uber-wealthy business elite, despite an extravagant net worth and high income, Jared Kusher has been able to claim tremendous losses in the form of buying things that make him even richer — and sometimes ends up paying no taxes at all.

In 2018, The New York Times reported Kushner's personal net worth had apparently ballooned to a whopping $324 million. However, despite all the financial flourishing, according to "confidential financial documents" obtained by the outlet, it looked like he hadn't paid federal income taxes. How? Well, as the NYT noted, he apparently used a little something called depreciation to his wallet's advantage. According to the report, he was able to offset his income tax with losses incurred by the depreciation of his real estate portfolio. This perfectly legal move is supposed to protect businesses from being flattened by taxes but as the NYT noted, it can help the rich get richer: "In practice ... the allowance often represents a lucrative giveaway to developers like Mr. Trump and Mr. Kushner." 

Donald Trump also famously took advantage of this carve-out. Despite his billionaire status, he reportedly paid a mere $750 — yes, just three figures — in taxes in 2016, then the same in 2017, and nothing overall for the prior decade, according to The New York Times.

A pay cut in the White House

Politics can be profitable. Joe Biden has been a public servant all his life and is worth millions, according to Forbes. Even socialist Bernie Sanders is worth about $3 million. But if you think public-sector paychecks are somehow a route to real riches — even counting corrupt side gigs — you might not be tracking how the wealthy actually make money. Hint: they don't do it by becoming public pariahs with full-time jobs that pay them quite literally nothing.

Jared Kushner did get richer while working in the White House, technically, but that's because rich people just tend to do that; capital grows all on its own. But Kushner's relative earnings fell off a cliff during his time in DC and were likely a fraction of what he could've made if he'd stayed in New York atop the family empire.

Kushner and Ivanka Trump took no government salaries but reported $120 million in income during their final year in the White House, according to Fortune. That sounds amazing but it's actually a 20 percent drop from the previous year, in which they may have made as much as $156 million. As the outlet put it, the couple "lost ground or tread water economically during their controversial stints in her father's administration." The pair also made only modest capital gains despite a stock market soaring 60 percent. Again, they weren't exactly hurting for dough, but the fresh dough pile wasn't as heaping as it once was. Basically, if money was sexier than power, they could've done better sitting at home.

Jared Kushner to be richer than Donald Trump

Despite Jared Kushner's staggering wealth accumulation forming a less favorable growth curve in his four-year stint advising Donald Trump, he'll probably end up surpassing his father-in-law's bankroll totals.

For one thing, Kushner is obviously set to inherit some of DJT's cash through wife Ivanka Trump. But he could surpass the former president before those eventualities, too. Even though Donald claims to have recovered from destitution back to billionaire status, he fell off the Forbes 400 richest list for the first time in 25 years in 2021. He was still worth $2.5 billion but that was down $600 million since the global pandemic began. Big city real estate, which makes up most of Donald's fortune, was not as hot as tech stocks and cryptocurrency — both sectors Kushner has done well in. Donald had $3.5 billion in 2016 when elected POTUS but refused to divest from his empire. If he would've just moved that cash into the market, calculates Forbes, he might have almost $5 billion as he exited the executive branch.

Kushner's fortune has gone the other way. He did divest a portion of control in his family's real estate holdings, according to The Washington Post. The White House ethics rules actually forced Kushner to do this; Donald Trump, as president, was exempt from these statutes. So it's one instance where doing the above-board thing was actually profitable too, and it's helping Kushner narrow the wealth gap between himself and his famous father-in-law.

Jared Kushner spent $2 billion in 2 years

Many of the estimates of Jared Kushner's net worth are based on wildly variant White House disclosure forms that say hilarious things like his 2017 assets were "worth between $179 million and $735 million," according to The Washington Post. So he's either incredibly rich or unfathomably rich. Which is it!?

Maybe a better way to gauge is to track how much business the Kush is doing. As The Washington Post noted, family company Kushner Co did over $2 billion in transactions in 2016 and 2017. Jared's biggest divestment before entering 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue was actually selling his stake in the aforementioned 666 Fifth Avenue building in Manhattan that nearly ruined him. According to the outlet, the building was a billion dollars underwater, but he reportedly offloaded what remained to a trust controlled by his mother. So yes, while it was technically taken out of his hands, it remained in the family. That said, a spokesperson told IFR (via Reuters) Jared "is not a beneficiary." 

Speaking of family, Charles Kushner happened to be very proud when his son stepped away from business to become a member of a presidential administration. "I look at what my kids have sacrificed to go into government, with the only intent of doing good for this country and for the world, and to help people," he told The Real Deal. 

The many mansions of Jared Kushner

In 2017, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump picked up a sweet crash pad rental from Chilean billionaire Andrónico Luksic for $15,000 a month in DC's "fashionable Kalorama neighborhood," according to The Wall Street Journal. That's the same neighborhood where the Obamas moved after they left the White House. The fully renovated home is worth $5.5 million, according to Insider, and was built in 1925.

Within a year of moving in, unfortunately, the couple became disenchanted with this 7,000 square foot, six-bedroom, seven-bathroom mansion. "They are actively looking because they're unhappy with the place they're in," a friend told Politico in 2018. Going back to Manhattan, however, was not on the table, according to various Upper East Side residents. One even told the The New York Times they fantasized about seeing them treated badly: "I have had visions of Ivanka with her thousand-dollar hair and makeup trying to show up at the opera like that and getting ejected. The poetic justice is that coming to New York would put them in a kind of prison already." A former friend of Ivanka also told Vanity Fair, "everyone with self-respect, a career, morals, respect for democracy, or who doesn't want their friends to shame them in private and public will steer clear."

In 2021, The Real Deal reported they'd scooped up a massive mansion in Miami for $24 million — just months after, as Forbes noted, they bought a Florida mansion previously owned by Julio Iglesias. 

Jared Kushner's lavish art collection

The super-rich live in a world of pricey paradoxes in which they can be rich and broke at the same time. in the documentary "Born Rich" (via Yahoo), Ivanka Trump recalled a comment her famous father made while at the height of his debt problems. She said the "Celebrity Apprentice" host once pointed at an unhoused person and remarked, "You know, that guy has $8 billion more than me."

Jared Kushner, like his father-in-law, has had his own serious solvency issues but has never wanted for luxuries. Rich people live quite well on debt, so maybe a useful metric is to see what kind of cash Kushner is throwing around just to be fancy.

To that end, Kushner and Ivanka's trendy art collection is worth as much as $25 million, according to CNN. It's true this could just be another investment but the expensive pieces do decorate the couple's various homes and are often inadvertently featured in the background of Ivanka's Instagram posts. The couple was criticized for not disclosing this arty asset while they were in the White House, with some pieces worth as much as $500,000. One of Kushner's lawyers insisted the paintings were purely "for decorative purposes" and that they've made only a single sale from this private collection, while also noting that they would comply with ethics rules going forward (via Insider). "To avoid any doubt, however, they will report their art collection," the lawyer said in a statement.

Ivanka and Jared's pricy vacations

If you like HBO's "Succession", you'll notice whereas ordinary folks might take a meeting over a couple of mochaccinos at Starbucks, the uber-elite will just helicopter to a super-yacht in Monaco. Life is a vacation when you have a billion bucks. Jared Kushner knows this all too well — and you might've even paid for some of it.

In 2017, Kushner and Ivanka Trump spent Passover in the swanky Four Seasons Hotel in Whistler, British Columbia, according to Jewish Insider. The town is a famous hub of leisure for monied aristocrats. The same year the couple also took another ski trip to the equally fancy Aspen, Colorado, according to CNN. This is a regular haunt for the couple, who were again spotted on the slopes in 2021, according to the Aspen Daily News.

The issue with all these ritzy getaways while the Kushner was in the White House: taxpayers got the bill for Secret Service agents staying in these same luxe accommodations. It cost nearly $14,000 for agents to accompany the couple on an "extravagant" trip to Barnard, Vermont, getaway, also in 2017, according to the New York Daily News. Again in 2017, the couple hit up the Dominican Republic. They stayed at the posh Amanera resort in Rio San Juan, according to a spending report obtained by Insider, where rooms go for a minimum of $1,800 a night. Kushner paid his own bill, but apparently, the presence of the Secret Service cost taxpayers $58,000.

Jared Kushner won't get Donald Trump's riches

Jared Kushner didn't just marry into the Trump family fortune when he and Ivanka got hitched in 2009. Unlike many famous heirs, according to Forbes, Ivanka Trump didn't get her wealth from a series of potentially dubious "careful transfers" from dad. Ivanka is an entrepreneur in her own right. She's got some $350 million from a combination of her fashion line, and from her work within the Trump organization — though maybe some of this cash is mixed up with Jared's money, too. It's not exactly clear. What is clear is she's got much more in the bank than her brothers Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr, each worth a measly $25 million.

Ivanka has been paid about $35 million from Donald Trump's official business edifice — the same as Don Jr. and Eric. In all, Trump's kids own only about .5% of the multi-billion dollar Trump real estate empire, as noted in Forbes. Unlike Jared's dad, Charles Kushner, who has been passing millions to his kids for years, the tax-averse Trump has been holding onto his riches, which could open up the family, which includes Jared, to a potentially crushing $1.3 billion estate tax upon Donald's death.