‘Vanderpump Rules’: How Much Money Does the Cast Make per Episode (And the Surprising Reason Lisa Vanderpump Invested in SUR)?

When restauranteur Lisa Vanderpump became a partner at SUR in 2005 she had no idea that her refined British lifestyle would be turned on its head. Vanderpump and husband Ken Todd invested $500,000 to develop SUR. She then joined The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills a few years later.

Stassi Schroeder, Jax Taylor, Katie Maloney, Kristen Doute, Lisa Vanderpump, Tom Sandoval, Scheana Marie
Stassi Schroeder, Jax Taylor, Katie Maloney, Kristen Doute, Lisa Vanderpump, Tom Sandoval, Scheana Marie |Tommy Garcia/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

The family moved from their countryside home in England to Beverly Hills, California. Vanderpump’s daughter Pandora enrolled in college in Southern California and the family followed, The Hollywood Reporter reports. Leading up to their move, Vanderpump and Todd had “retired” after selling most of their businesses overseas.

However, Vanderpump wasn’t going to allow an ocean to separate her from her children so the family packed up and moved to California. Vanderpump says a lot has changed since those early days at SUR. “The restaurant business has always been a public arena,” she told The Hollywood Reporter. “We’ve just got a bit of a different energy now, with the whole celebrity factor from the show.”

This was one big reason why Vanderpump became a partner at SUR

Vanderpump revealed to The Hollywood Reporter that one main reason she invested in SUR was to secure a visa to stay in the United States. “We needed to do something right away,” she explained. “So we shook hands that day and started developing.” 

She partnered with Guillermo and Nathalie Zapata who first opened SUR in 1998, Refinery 29 reports. The restaurant only had a handful of tables when it opened. Vanderpump’s investment expanded the restaurant to accommodate 400, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“That was the antithesis of the life we live now,” Vanderpump told The Hollywood Reporter thinking of her life in England. “We had two young children, we were in the country half the time — but we moved here, and within a few years I ended up on Housewives. God help me.”

SURvers cashed in thanks to the show

Even though Vanderpump says the move turned her life upside down, SUR and the subsequent television show Vanderpump Rules became a financial boon for some of her employees. The Hollywood Reporter learned that core cast members like Jax Taylor and Scheana Shay have watched their salaries explode.

The six core cast members were initially paid about $10,000 for the entire first season of the show. However, after seven years on Bravo, their salaries have blossomed to $25,000 per episode. This explains some of the expensive moves a few cast members have made in the last year.

During the first episode of season 8, three Vanderpump Rules couples showed off their multi-million dollar homes. The cast’s net worth has increased with Tom Schwartz and Tom Sandoval raking in the most cash. Since opening Vanderpump-backed restaurant TomTom, both men are now worth about $2 million each. Jax Taylor previously held the highest net worth at $500,000. Sandoval’s girlfriend Ariana Madix has surpassed Taylor with a net worth of $1 million.

Sandoval told The Hollywood Reporter, the money adds up from a variety of sources. “It starts as club appearances, and suddenly you’re paid to post on social. … A lot changes.”