Elon Musk remarked in a video interview with Chris Anderson, the president of conference organizers TED, broadcast Monday, “I don’t even own a place right now, I’m literally staying at friends’ places.”
“If I travel to the Bay Area, which is where most of Tesla’s engineering is, I basically rotate through friends’ spare bedrooms,” Musk decided to add.
According to Bloomberg, Musk has a net worth of $251 billion. He was replying to Anderson’s assertion that many people are outraged by the concept of billionaires because of worldwide economic inequities. Senator Elizabeth Warren, for example, has chastised billionaires like Musk for their comparatively low tax bills.
“For sure, it would be very problematic if I was spending billions of dollars a year in personal consumption, but that is not the case,” Musk told Anderson, contributing that he doesn’t even own a yacht or really take vacations, but while he notably does own a personal jet.
“It’s not as though my personal consumption is high. I mean, the one exception is the plane, but if I don’t use the plane then I have less hours to work,” he said, acknowledging that his net wealth was nonetheless “bonkers.”
Despite being the world’s richest person, Musk’s comments appear to be his first acknowledgment that he does not have a permanent residence.
Friends of the billionaire have remarked on his frugal ways throughout the years.
He tweeted in May 2020 that he planned to sell all of his belongings and that he would “own no house.” Insider reported in August 2021 that Musk was rumored to be living in a $50,000 prefab tiny home that he rents from SpaceX.
Musk’s on-again, off-again companion Grimes admitted to living “below the poverty line” in a recent interview with Vanity Fair. After her side of the mattress developed a hole, he refused to buy a new one, she claimed.
And in 2015, Google’s cofounder and then-CEO Larry Page said that sometimes when Musk came to visit Silicon Valley, he will further email Page and say: “I don’t know where to stay tonight. Can I come over?”
Musk’s prerecorded interview comes after he spoke with Anderson in person at a TED conference on April 15, where he addressed the ongoing drama of his attempted purchase of Twitter.
Musk claimed he has a backup plan in case Twitter rejects his $43 billion offer, but he wouldn’t say what it was.
Musk indicated during the live event that he may not be able to buy the company, but that he could “technically” afford it.