Earlier this week, news emerged that presidential hopeful Mitt Romney is planning to knock down his house on the beach in California in favor of something four times larger. Since Romney's house is already more than 3,000 square feet and worth around $12 million, the report likely triggered uncomfortable memories for the Republicans of John McCain's inability to recall how many houses he owns, let alone their size or value. Romney, whose estimated worth is somewhere between $190 and $250 million, has recently started to sell off pieces of his real-estate portfolio, getting rid of a $3.5 million home in Massachusetts and a $5.25 million place in Utah. But what about the rest of the Republican field?
Rick Perry: Perry left the governor's mansion in 2007 as it underwent repairs, and a subsequent arson (still unsolved!) delayed his return. In the meantime, he has settled into a 6,386-square-foot rental on three acres near the capitol. The place was listed for $1.85 million in 2007, and is costing taxpayers about $10,000 a month in rent and upkeep, including a housekeeper and a full-time chef.
Michele Bachmann: In 2008, the Minnesota congresswoman bought a home valued at $1.27 million on the eighteenth hole of the Stoneridge Golf Course in West Lakeland Township. That was an upgrade from the family's 3,200-square-foot house in Stillwater, which the Bachmanns attempted to sell for $359,000. The golf-course digs measure 5,200 square feet and sit on 3.2 acres. According to the listing, "Both the formal dining adjacent to the foyer and a quaint breakfast bay overlook the golf course allowing for quality entertaining or a casual living atmosphere."
Jon Huntsman: Upon returning from his stint as the U.S. ambassador to China, Huntsman and his family purchased a $3.6 million, five-bedroom home in the Kalorama neighborhood of Washington, D.C. The place also boasts five fireplaces and housed the contestants from Top Chef: Washington, D.C. And yet that's nothing compared to his father's home, which was listed in 2009 for $55 million.
Rick Santorum: The former Pennsylvania senator came under fire in 2004 for his living arrangements after claiming that his primary residence was an $87,880 three-bedroom house in Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, which allowed five of his six kids to attend a cyber charter school. In actuality, the Santorum family spends most of their time outside of D.C. in Leesburg, Virginia, where they bought a house in 2001 for $643,361.
Newt Gingrich: Gingrich has lived full-time in a McLean, Virginia, home outside of D.C. that he and his wife, Callista, bought in May of 2000 for $995,000. The two-story home is on more than 5,000 square feet and has five bedrooms, four bathrooms, and three fireplaces. (Newt can't even beat Jon Hunstman.)
Herman Cain: Not unlike his views on evolution, the Internet seems to have no idea where exactly Herman Cain lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia. It's probably safe to say it's nice, not just because he's a Republican candidate for president, but because of all that Godfather's Pizza money. (Update: His own political donations place Cain's home in McDonough, Georgia.)
Ron Paul: In April of 2011, the independent-thinking, underappreciated candidate tried to sell his house on Facebook. After 42 years in the Lake Jackson, Texas, home, Paul launched a website called BuyRonPaulsHouse.com, asking $325,000 for the 5,500-square-foot abode "with 4 bedrooms, 2 with lofts, 5 bathrooms, an oversize pool, a large office with built-in book shelves, 2 car garage, a formal dining room, living room, family room, and a craft room." A more important selling point: "Generations of Liberty loving kids have grown up here, and you can continue the tradition." The website still exists, so it's probably safe to say the thing never moved. Get in touch today!