Everyone knows the Kardashians and Jenners are rolling in dough, but they’re not the only reality stars with mind-blowing net worths. GOBankingRates rounded up some reality stars you might not expect to be part of the 1% — which requires a minimum net worth of $10.4 million, according to Forbes — and some that you knew were wealthy, but are probably richer than you might think.
Last updated: Feb. 23, 2021
Cat Deeley: $10 Million
- Reality TV shows: “So You Think You Can Dance,” “This Time Next Year”
British actress and producer Cat Deeley hosted the reality dance competition show “So You Think You Can Dance” from 2006 to 2018. Fox announced in February that the show would be back in summer 2020, with Deeley returning as host.
Movers and Shakers: Oprah and 24 More Celebrities With Secret Business Empires
Chip and Joanna Gaines: $10 Million Each
- Reality TV show: “Fixer Upper”
Chip and Joanna Gaines may be from small-town Texas, but their bank accounts are anything but small. The couple’s Waco, Texas-based construction business Magnolia Homes became the subject of the HGTV show “Fixer Upper,” which ran from 2013 to 2018. The couple decided to step away from the immensely popular show to focus on their family, but continue to make money through their products, books and other business ventures.
The Gaines will be returning to TV in the summer of 2020, but this time they’ll be behind the scenes. They have partnered with Discover for a joint media venture that will include their own channel, Forbes reported.
Find Out Who: Today’s Richest Athletes in the World
Julianne Hough: $10 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Dancing With the Stars,” “America’s Got Talent”
Julianne Hough gained fame as a pro dancer on “Dancing With the Stars” and used the platform to launch a broader career as a singer, actress and reality TV show judge. She recently launched Kinrgy, a dance-focused fitness program.
Top Moneymakers: 20 Richest Actresses of All Time
Christina Anstead: $12 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Flip or Flop,” “Flip or Flop Follow-Up,” “Brother vs. Brother,” “Christina on the Coast”
Christina Anstead got her start on “Flip or Flop,” and she later got her own spin-off show. “Christina on the Coast” is currently in its second season.
Anstead can now also add book author to her resume — her upcoming book, “The Wellness Remodel,” comes out on April 14.
Golnesa ‘GG’ Gharachedaghi: $12 Million
- Reality TV show: “Shahs of Sunset”
A cast member of “Shahs of Sunset” since 2012, Golnesa “GG” Gharachedaghi was born into wealth. Her father, Mahmoud Gharachedaghi, is a prominent architect, and she has openly talked about receiving financial support from him on the show. However, she’s since started a couple of businesses of her own. She is the founder and CEO of the cannabis wellness brand Wusah and the co-founder of RoGo Farms.
Caroline Manzo: $12 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of New Jersey,” “Manzo’d With Children”
Caroline Manzo had a thriving career before joining “The Real Housewives of New Jersey.”
“Very few may know this but I owned my own real estate company for many years and it’s what put [my son Albie] through college and everything else, so hooray for me, but then it got to be too much when ‘Housewives’ started so I stopped it,” she said on her sons’ podcast, “Dear Albie.”
In addition to her real estate business, Manzo and her husband, Albert, made money outside of their reality show paychecks with their event space, The Brownstone.
Ty Pennington: $12 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Trading Spaces,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”
“Trading Spaces” was really the first home improvement show of its kind, dating back all the way to 2000. The show — hosted by Ty Pennington and Paige Davis — went off the air in 2008 and returned after a 10-year hiatus in 2018. A carpenter by trade, Pennington also hosted “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.” His wealth comes from his hosting gigs as well as his other endeavors, which include a Sears line, a line of flooring for Lumber Liquidators and two books.
NeNe Leakes: $14 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “The Celebrity Apprentice,” “Dancing With the Stars”
As of 2013, NeNe Leakes was the highest-paid “Real Housewife” with a $1 million per season salary, Radar Online reported. She’s also appeared on other reality shows, including “The Celebrity Apprentice” and “Dancing With the Stars,” and launched an acting career with roles on “Glee” and “The New Normal.” And she’s not just a TV star — Leakes also had an HSN line and has brought in more money with her comedy tour.
A Change of Pace: Former Celebrities Who Have Normal Jobs Now
Jillian Michaels: $14 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Biggest Loser,” “Just Jillian”
Jillian Michaels brought her fitness knowledge and no-nonsense attitude to homes around the world via “The Biggest Loser” as a trainer on the show from 2005 to 2014. Three years after she began her run on the show, she launched her own company, Empowered Media, which has become a veritable wellness empire. Michaels has her own diet and exercise app, a line of fitness DVDs, an exercise streaming platform, multiple bestselling books and a podcast.
Tim Gunn: $15 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Project Runway,” “Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style,” “Project Runway Junior,” “Making the Cut”
Tim Gunn has had an impressive career in fashion outside his role as a mentor on “Project Runway.” He was chair of the department of fashion design at Parsons School of Design, served as fashion dean at Fifth & Pacific and was the chief creative officer at Liz Claiborne Inc. Gunn has also written a number of books.
Gunn left “Project Runway” in 2018, but he will be reuniting with fellow “Runway” star Heidi Klum for their new Amazon original series, “Making the Cut,” which premieres March 27.
Chris Harrison: $16 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Bachelor,” “The Bachelorette,” “Bachelor in Paradise,” “The Bachelor Winter Games,” “Bachelor Pad,” “The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart”
“The Bachelor” revolutionized dating shows when it added an element of competition to the quest for love — and Chris Harrison has been there since the beginning in 2002. He’s also gone on to host the TV hit’s various spin-off shows. In addition, Harrison hosts “Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?” and even penned a romance novel.
Holly Madison: $16 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Girls Next Door,” “Dancing With the Stars,” “Holly’s World”
Former Playboy bunny Holly Madison gained fame as one of the stars of “The Girls Next Door,” which chronicled her life in the Playboy Mansion. After leaving the show, she competed on “Dancing With the Stars,” and the stint scored her a role in the Las Vegas stage show “Peepshow.” Her move to Vegas and work on “Peepshow” was chronicled in her own spin-off show, “Holly’s World.” Madison has also written two New York Times bestselling books.
Phil Keoghan: $16 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Amazing Race”
Phil Keoghan not only hosts “The Amazing Race,” but he is also the show’s co-executive producer. The show has been on since 2001, so Keoghan has had plenty of time to grow his riches. Outside of his reality TV fame, Keoghan is a book author and motivational speaker.
Ramona Singer: $18 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Real Housewives of New York City”
Ramona Singer climbed the ranks in the fashion industry prior to joining “The Real Housewives of New York City” in 2008. She worked as a buyer for Macy’s and then worked in sales management at Calvin Klein and French Connection. Singer launched her own company dealing in closeout merchandise when she was 30. She’s since launched a number of other businesses and ventures, including True Faith jewelry, an HSN jewelry collection, a wine brand and an anti-aging skin care brand.
Shannon Beador: $20 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Real Housewives of Orange County”
Shannon Beador has turned her reality TV fame into a hefty paycheck. In her divorce filings, “The Real Housewives of Orange County” star stated that she earned $423,000 in 2017 as a “reality television personality,” Radar Online reported. Her net worth got an additional boost when her divorce settled in April 2019. As part of the settlement, Beador would receive $1.4 million plus $10,000 a month in spousal support, The Blast reported. She also maintained ownership of her entertainment company and walked away with a Cadillac Escalade and a BMW sedan. Beador also has a line of healthy meals sold on QVC.
Paul ‘Pauly D’ Delvecchio: $20 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Jersey Shore,” “Jersey Shore Family Vacation,” “Double Shot at Love With DJ Pauly D & Vinny,” “Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars,” “Famously Single,” “The Pauly D Project”
Pauly D is the wealthiest of his “Jersey Shore” castmates thanks to his lucrative career as a DJ. Plus, he gets paid well on the show. For the final season of “Jersey Shore” in 2012, Delvecchio reportedly made $2 million, Radar Online reported. It’s unclear how much he’s been paid to return for “Jersey Shore Family Vacation.”
Bear Grylls: $20 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Man vs. Wild,” “Worst Case Scenario,” “Escape From Hell,” “Get Out Alive,” “Running Wild With Bear Grylls”
Bear Grylls was a trooper in the U.K.’s Special Air Service before becoming a reality television star. Despite a debilitating parachuting accident, Grylls became the youngest British person to successfully scale Mount Everest at the age of 23 — the first of numerous adventures he embarked on before scoring his first TV show. In 2006, he was approached by the Discovery Channel to film a series of wilderness adventures, and “Man vs. Wild” was born. He next demonstrated his survival skills in the series “Worst Case Scenario” and later in the shows “Escape From Hell,” “Get Out Alive” and “Running Wild With Bear Grylls,” among others. He also starred in Netflix’s first interactive show, “You vs. Wild.”
In addition, Grylls wrote four adult books and a series of children’s books, and opened the Bear Grylls Survival Academy and Bear Grylls Fitness centers, which has locations across the U.K. In addition, he’s a brand ambassador for Land Rover. Grylls also recently launched a production company, The Natural Studios.
Dorinda Medley: $20 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Real Housewives of New York City”
Although she’s one of “The Real Housewives of New York City” now, Dorinda Medley first found her place in high society in London. It was there that she started her own cashmere company, DCL Cashmere, which had clients that included Princess Diana and Joan Collins. Medley had that company for 10 years and sold it before moving back to the U.S., where she started working as a real estate broker, according to Bustle. Her second husband, Richard Medly, was a financier who died in 2011.
Dorinda likely received a sizeable inheritance after her husband’s passing, but she also makes money from her reality gig, plus her touring Dorobics fitness class.
Willie Robertson: $20 Million
- Reality TV show: “Duck Dynasty”
Willie Robertson took over his father’s Duck Commander business and expanded it from a living room operation to a premier outdoor destination. He also started his own company, Buck Commander, a hunting DVD and gear company, in 2006. Six years later, Robertson and his family became the subjects of the reality show “Duck Dynasty,” which ran on A&E from 2012 to 2017. Following his business success and the show’s popularity, Robertson wrote a bestselling book and became a traveling speaker.
Cesar Millan: $25 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan,” “Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation,” “Leader of the Pack,” “Cesar’s Recruit Asia”
Cesar Millan was working as a dog groomer when his clients took notice of his calming effect on dogs. One of his first celebrity clients was Jada Pinkett Smith, who helped him launch his Dog Psychology Centre and eventually land a TV gig. He has since starred on multiple reality shows, toured in a live show and released several books as well as a series of instructional DVDs.
Zak Bagans: $30 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Ghost Adventures,” “Ghost Adventures: Aftershocks,” “Deadly Possessions”
Zak Bagans has been filming the paranormal investigation show “Ghost Adventures” since 2008. The show now has multiple spinoffs, and Bagans opened his own Haunted Museum in Las Vegas. In July 2019, Bagans purchased a $1.98 million home that was the site of Manson family murders, TMZ reported.
Kandi Burruss: $30 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “Kandi’s Wedding,” “Xscape Still Kickin It,” “The Kandi Factory”
Kandi Burruss is way more than just a housewife. The Bravolebrity is a Grammy Award-winning songwriter, entrepreneur and restaurateur. Burruss got her start in the music industry as a founding member of the girl group Xscape and has since written songs for the likes of Mariah Carey, TLC and Destiny’s Child. She also has an iPhone app, two boutiques and a line of intimate toys.
Mike Rowe: $35 Million
- Reality TV show: “Dirty Jobs”
Mike Rowe got his start as a QVC host but got his big break when he pitched the idea for “Dirty Jobs” to the Discovery Channel. Outside of the show, Rowe has added to his net worth as a narrator for a number of documentaries, a public speaker and a commercial voiceover artist, with brand partnerships with Ford and other major brands.
Lauren Conrad: $40 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County,” “The Hills”
Lauren Conrad was propelled to reality TV fame when she was only a high schooler, and she used her early celebrity to launch a whole lifestyle empire. She now has a line of apparel, accessories and home goods with Kohl’s and several New York Times bestselling books.
Scott Disick: $40 Million
- Reality TV shows: “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” “Flip It Like Disick”
Even though Scott Disick is Kardashian-adjacent, he has made lots of his wealth on his own. As a teen, he modeled for young adult romance novels, the Daily Mail reported. He also briefly owned a Japanese fusion restaurant and has made tens of thousands for club appearances. Disick makes money off sponsored social media posts, too. He is also an entrepreneur, with his own line of clothing, Talentless, and a house-flipping business.
Bethenny Frankel: $40 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of New York City,” “The Apprentice: Martha Stewart,” “Bethenny Getting Married,” “Bethenny Ever After”
Anyone who has watched “The Real Housewives of New York City” and has seen the colossal NYC apartment Bethenny Frankel calls home knows she’s rich, but you might be surprised by just how much this self-made multimillionaire really has.
Frankel got her reality TV start on “The Apprentice: Martha Stewart” before landing on “The Real Housewives of New York City.” At the time, she was a natural food chef who was trying to grow her healthy baked goods company. She has since launched the Skinnygirl brand, which started with margaritas and has grown to include other cocktails, wine, flavored vodkas, jeans, shapewear, packaged foods and more. Frankel has also written five New York Times bestselling books, a children’s book and a cocktail book. In addition, she has her own production company, B Real-ity.
Jeff Probst: $40 Million
- Reality TV show: “Survivor”
Jeff Probst may host “Survivor,” but he himself is far from roughing it. After nearly 20 years traveling the world with the show as both host and executive producer, Probst has amassed a $40 million fortune. Outside of the show, he’s written a New York Times bestselling children’s book series, directed feature films and is a radio host.
Andrew Firestone: $50 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Bachelor”
As heir to the Firestone Tire fortune, Andrew Firestone was plenty wealthy before he starred on season three of “The Bachelor.” Although his love didn’t last with his final pick, he is now married to someone else and has three children.
Carole Radziwill: $50 Million
- Reality TV show: “The Real Housewives of New York City”
Carole Radziwell has found success on her own as a journalist and book author, but you might not know that this Bravo star is royal by marriage. The former “Real Housewives of New York City” cast member was married to Prince Anthony Radziwill of Poland, who died of cancer. She is also a distant relative of the Kennedys.
Kyle Richards: $50 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” “The Celebrity Apprentice”
Before she was on reality TV, Kyle Richards was a successful child actress with roles on scripted television shows that included “Little House on the Prairie” and “E.R.” Another boost to her finances is Richards’ marriage to Mauricio Umansky, who runs international real estate company The Agency.
Johnny Knoxville: $75 Million
- Reality TV show: “Jackass”
It apparently pays to be a “Jackass.” Johnny Knoxville made his millions as a creator and star of the MTV stunt show, which ran from 2000 to 2007. The show also led to four feature films, which likely added to Knoxville’s wealth. He also has two production companies — Hello Junior and Dickhouse Productions, which produces “Rob Dydrek’s Fantasy Factory,” “Ridiculousness” and “Nitro Circus.”
Lisa Vanderpump: $75 Million
- Reality TV shows: “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” “Vanderpump Rules”
Life really is all diamonds and rosé for Lisa Vanderpump. Although the restaurateur announced in June 2019 that she would be leaving “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” she probably wasn’t relying on her reality salary to keep her luxurious lifestyle afloat. Vanderpump and her husband, Ken Todd, own 26 bars and restaurants across Europe and three in the U.S., including SUR, which is featured on her other Bravo show, “Vanderpump Rules.” She also has a line of pet accessories and her own sangria brand.
Jonathan and Drew Scott: $100 Million Each
- Reality TV shows: “Property Brothers,” “Property Brothers: Buying and Selling,” “Brother vs. Brother”
Reality television has helped Jonathan and Drew Scott become millionaires 100 times over. In addition to their three HGTV shows, the brothers have a production company, Brothers Entertainment, and a line of indoor and outdoor furniture and decor, the Scott Living Collection.
More From GOBankingRates
- Here’s the Average IRS Tax Refund Amount by State
- 30 Biggest Do’s and Don’ts When Buying a Car
- 27 Ugly Truths About Retirement
- 17 Hidden Auto Costs Your Dealer Will Never Tell You About