The Sander’s tax return just released provides some interesting information.
He is not much for investments. In fact, he has no investments beyond his federal thrift savings plan. He is fairly generous giving $8,000 to charity. And he does not have that much in the way of discretionary income (especially for someone living in D.C.) which may explain his lack of a hair cut. 🤑
His gross taxable income in 2014 was $205,617 including Social Security, and his wife’s business plus a modest pension income. His salary as a Senator is $174,000, but is reported as $156,441 because of pre-tax contributions to his government thrift-savings plan.
So, we start with$205,617 and we subtract $9,666 in state income taxes, $14,843 in real estate taxes, $22,946 in home mortgage interest, $8,350 in charitable gifts and $27,653 in federal income taxes. Based on the amount of interest deducted, in today’s market that is equal to a $575,000 loan for 30-years which means the principal payment may be $9,941 a year. We also must consider another 7.65% in payroll taxes.
All the above leaves a net of $8,598.75 per month for all living expenses for two people including maintaining two homes (condos with likely HOA fees), one in Vermont and one in Washington, and credit card payments. While that is not chump change and considerably more than the average American’s income, it is not wealthy for the Washington, DC area.
At his age, it would be prudent to be debt free and to have savings outside of qualified retirement plans. Sanders reported credit card debt of between $25,000 and $65,000 in 2015.
His personal finances are consistent with his perspectives on federal spending, debt and taxes … naive.