Here's How Much Elvis Presley Was Worth When He Died

Elvis Presley was the King of Rock and Roll, and as befits a man with such a regal title, he lived a life of rock royalty. Between his humble beginnings as a 19-year-old truck driver and his tragic death at age 42, he managed to cram in an incredible amount of experiences. Apart from his truly amazing career as an artist, he found the time to do a stint in the army, to indulge in hobbies such as impersonating police officers and collecting guns, and meanwhile, developed a truly voracious appetite when it came to food, drugs, and women. 

It's a borderline unimaginable life, and as such, it's easy to think that the amount of money Presley earned during his lifetime must have been equally unbelievable. Just how much was Elvis Presley worth when he died?

Elvis earned and spent fortunes

When Elvis Presley passed away, his net worth might surprise you ... by being a lot less than you'd think. As Celebrity Net Worth tells us, Presley was worth only $5 million ($20 million in today's money) when he left the mortal coil in 1977. That's by no means a modest sum, but it does seem like a pretty small figure for a man who was one of the greatest rock stars of all time. 

As Danielle and Andy Mayoras of Forbes note, there's a perfectly simple explanation for this. According to them, estimations about Presley's lifetime earnings varied between $100 million and $1 billion. Unfortunately, the artist earned a reputation as a big spender, and he was extremely generous to many people around him. After all, he was secure in the knowledge that whenever he started running low on cash, there would be another album to make, tour to take, or a film to star in. However, Robert Hilburn of the Los Angeles Times reports that this tactic, quite naturally, stopped working the second Presley died. With an estate valued only at around $4.9 million, revenues dropping, and tons of bills to pay, the financial future of his surviving family members looked quite grim for a while. 

Fortunately, Presley's wife, Priscilla, eventually managed to turn things around.