These Are the Top 5 Highest Paid TV Show Hosts of 2018

Most television-watching Americans are on a first name basis with TV show hosts. You don’t have to tune in to Judge Judy or the Ellen Show to know who these daytime celebrities are. They’ve gone beyond just “television popular” and become part of pop culture in general.

But just how much are these TV show hosts making per year? Millions and millions of dollars. Typically, their salaries depend on show ratings, and the higher the ratings the more they can negotiate into their contract. That’s why the number one earner also has the highest rated show.

Ahead, check out the top five highest paid TV hosts of 2018.

1. Judge Judy — $147 million

Judge Judy

Judge Judy | Hulton Archive/Getty Images

This is the first year that Judy Sheindlin, or Judge Judy as she’s more commonly known, took home top honors with the highest salary of any television show host. America’s favorite no-nonsense judge has a staggering net worth of around $400 million.

Her show Judge Judy is also one of the most watched, boasting 9 to 10 million viewers per episode. Judge Judy recently sold the rights to her library for $100 million.

2. Ellen DeGeneres — $87.5 million

Host Ellen DeGeneres speaks onstage during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California.

Ellen | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

The Ellen DeGeneres Show is a fan favorite. From the biggest A-list celebrity guests, including former presidents and first ladies, to feel good episodes that make you laugh and cry, Ellen has quickly cemented herself as a staple of daytime television. She has the salary to prove it, too – Ellen brings home a whopping $87.5 million per year.

No wonder she’s always dancing like that.

3. Dr. Phil McGraw – $77.5 million

Dr. Phil

Dr. Phil | Jemal Countess/Getty Images

This 68-year-old talk show host isn’t afraid to tackle the tough topics, and audiences can’t get enough. He became famous after being featured on Oprah’s legendary talk show.

People have been watching Dr. Phil since its debut in 2002, which has driven up the price for Dr. Phil McGraw’s salary.

4. Ryan Seacrest — $74 million

Ryan Seacrest in 2018

Ryan Seacrest attends the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards at Madison Square Garden on January 28, 2018 in New York City. | Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for NARAS

Is there anything Ryan Seacrest doesn’t do? He’s been described as the hardest working man in television thanks to all the projects he’s working on simultaneously. It’s next to impossible to watch television and not have any exposure to Ryan Seacrest.

This host of Live With Kelly and Ryan and American Idol currently commands a $74 million per year salary.

5. Steve Harvey — $44 million

Steve Harvey holds his hands up and speaks into a microphone

Steve Harvey | Moses Robinson/Getty Images for Neighborhood Awards

Cheesy dad jokes aside, Steve Harvey makes audiences smile with his irreverent, offbeat sense of humor. He hosts Family Feud, Steve, Miss Universe, and Little Big Shots. That’s a lot of work – but Steve Harvey gets rewarded handsomely for the trouble. He’s the fifth highest earner on the list and makes $44 million per year.

Who did make the list of highest paid hosts this year?

Someone who didn’t make the list this year? America’s Got Talent judge Simon Cowell. But don’t worry, he’s still making plenty of cash. He has an estimated net worth of $570 million and a salary to support his lifestyle.