Desi Arnaz Net Worth 2022 – Wife, Family, House, Car

With income from his career as an actor and singer, Desi Arnaz had a net worth of $20 million at the time of his death in 1986.

Desi Arnaz was a well-known musician, actor and TV producer from the United States. He founded the popular Latin music group “Desi Arnaz Orchestra”. This band brought the Latin dance conga to America, which became very popular. 

It was Xavier Cugat, a well-known representative of Latin music, who recognised Arnaz’s potential as a musician. His single “Babalu” is considered his signature song. Together with his wife Lucille Ball, he founded a company called “Desilu Productions”. This company was responsible for running Arnaz and Ball’s shows on stage, TV and radio. 

He produced shows with this production company such as “The Ann Sothern Show” and “The Untouchables” for TV. This company also produced full-length films such as “Forever, Darling.” As an influential producer, he is known for developing new ideas, such as sitcoms with multiple cameras and live shows in the studio. 

As an actor, he will always be remembered for playing Ricky Ricardo so well in the American series “I Love Lucy” ( TV ). He also played roles in movies like “Father Takes a Wife” and “The Navy Comes Through.” In “Bataan” he played a soldier who was dying, which made him famous.

Today we’re going to discuss how much money Desi Arnaz has and how he builds his net worth.

At the end of this article, we will also tell you how to get rich like Desi Arnaz. So be sure to read to the end.

Desi Arnaz Net Worth 2022

Before he died, Desi Arnaz was worth $20 million. Desi Arnaz made a lot of money from I Love Lucy, but he and Lucille Ball also made a lot of money from the merchandising deals that followed the birth of their son Desi Jr. in 1953. According to The I Love Lucy Book, these businesses led to sponsorships for dolls, comic books, lighters, aprons and other items. Industry experts began calling Desi Jr. “Lucy’s $50 million baby” because of his sudden wealth.

In 1950, Ball and Arnaz formed their own production company called DesiLu Productions. It produced series such as I Love Lucy, The Lucy Show, Untouchables, Mission: Impossible, and Star Trek. The company was the largest independent production company in the United States until it was sold to Paramount Television in 1968. 

Prior to that, it was the second-largest independent TV company in the country. Both Ball and Arnaz owned most of DesiLu until 1962, two years after their divorce. At that time, Ball bought out Arnaz and ran the company alone for seven years. She sold her shares in Desilu in 1968 for $17 million to Gulf + Western, which later became Paramount Television, worth $132 million in 2020. 

Therefore, her net worth is twice that of her ex-husband. But that does not mean Arnaz was not rich. The I Love Lucy book says that Desi owned a 34-foot boat and an $18,000 racehorse.TV Guide says that 15 minutes of I Love Lucy cost $18,000. Desilu Stables started with the horse.

To calculate the net worth of Desi Arnaz, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as student loans and credit card debt, are included in total liabilities.

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: Desi Arnaz
Net Worth: $20 Million
Monthly Salary: $500,000+ 
Annual Income: $1 Million+
Source of Wealth: Comedian, Singer, Musician, Television Producer, Actor, Television Director, Film Producer

Desi Arnaz Net Worth Last 5 Years

Net Worth 2022: $20 Million
Net Worth 2021: $20 Million
Net Worth 2020: $20 Million
Net Worth 2019: $20 Million
Net Worth 2018: $20 Million

How Did Desi Arnaz Build His Net Worth?

Desi Arnaz had a net worth of $20 million at the time of his death in 1986. Desi Arnaz made a lot of money from I Love Lucy, but he and Lucille Ball also made a lot of money from the merchandise deals that followed Desi Jr.’s birth in 1953. It is reported in The I Love Lucy Book that these businesses provided sponsorships for dolls, comic books, lighters, and aprons. As a result of Desi Jr.’s sudden wealth, industry experts began calling him “Lucy’s $50 million baby.”

Apart from playing Ricky Ricardo with his wife Lucille Ball on the TV show I Love Lucy, he also led the Desi Arnaz Orchestra, which played Latin music. From 1951 to 1957, Arnaz played the role of Ricky Ricardo on the TV show I Love Lucy. 

From 1957 to 1960, he played the role of Ricardo on the TV show The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour. As part of Desilu Productions with Ball, Arnaz was the executive producer of the TV shows Willy, I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Ann Sothern Show, The Lucy Show, and the Mothers-In-Law. In 1956, Arnaz won a Golden Globe for Best TV Show. 

In 1960, he got stars on both the Motion Picture Walk of Fame and the Television Walk of Fame. From 1940 to 1960, Desi was married to Lucille Ball. After that, he married Edith Mack Hirsch. Desi Arnaz died of lung cancer on December 2, 1986, when he was 69 years old.

Below, let’s take a deeper look at how Desi Arnaz built his net worth in detail. 

How Much Money Did Desi Arnaz Make From Music and Songs?

Desi Arnaz made a lot of money from his music and songs. After working for Xavier Cugat in New York for a short time, Arnaz returned to Miami to lead his own band and bring the conga line to the United States. The band was a great success in the area and around the country, so Arnaz returned to New York to form his own band. 

In 1939 he was asked to participate in the Broadway musical Too Many Girls, and later starred in the movie version filmed in Hollywood. There he met his future wife, Lucille Ball. In 1940 they were married.

Before being drafted into the army during World War II, Arnaz made three more films. During his two years of service, he was responsible for making sure the troops had fun. After his discharge from the army, he put together a new orchestra and landed several hits in the late 1940s. During this time, from 1946 to 1947, he led the orchestra on Bob Hope’s radio show.

How Much Money Did Desi Arnaz Make From I Love Lucy?

Desi Arnaz made a lot of money from I Love Lucy. Desi Arnaz played the male lead in 180 half-hour episodes of “I Love Lucy” from October 15, 1951 to May 6, 1957. He was Ricky Ricardo, the leader of a nightclub band. Ricky’s wife, Lucy Ricardo, was played by Lucille Ball, who was also Arnaz’s wife in real life. 

In each episode, she and her best friends made different plans to accompany Ricky in his work. After the end of I Love Lucy in 1957, Ball and Arnaz got their own show, The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show, which ran for three seasons and was later renamed The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour. I Love Lucy was the most watched show in America for four of its six seasons. It was also the first show to end its run at the top of the Nielsen ratings.

Since its end, I Love Lucy has been broadcast worldwide in dozens of languages and is seen by more than 40 million people each year. In 2013, more than eight million people watched a color version of the show’s Christmas episode when it aired again on CBS. The show was the first scripted program ( TV ) to be shot on 35mm film in front of a live studio audience. It has won five Emmys and in 2012 was voted “Best TV Show of All Time” by ABC News and People Magazine.

How much money did Desi Arnaz make from I Love Lucy? The I Love Lucy Book, written by Bart Andrews in 1985, states that Ball and Arnaz were paid a total of $4,000 per episode, or $2,000 each. 

According to the book, the couple initially wanted $5,000 per episode, but CBS and Arnaz settled on $4,000 for full rights to the series. Philip Morris, a cigarette manufacturer, paid the asking price of $26,500 to sponsor I Love Lucy, according to the book. The I Love Lucy Book says CBS also paid $5 million for the show’s broadcast rights.

The book states that Ball and Arnaz signed a new contract with Morris for $8 million for an additional 100 episodes a few months after the birth of their second child, Desi Jr. in 1953. The cost of producing each episode was between $40,000 and $50,000. 

The book also states that twins Richard and Ronald Lee Simmons, who played Lucy and Ricky’s young son in I Love Lucy, earned $25 a week for a day of shooting on Fridays. The book says that after I Love Lucy ended, Desi was tired of half-hour sitcoms and turned down an offer from CBS for a seventh season of the series, which paid him $80,000 per episode plus an extra $30,000. 

That was double the actor’s pay at the time. Instead, Ball and Arnaz signed a $2.5 million contract with Ford to sponsor five special episodes of The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show, which was then expanded to 13 episodes. The Los Angeles Times reports that reruns of I Love Lucy bring in about $20 million each year.

How Much Money Did Desi Arnaz Make From DesiLu Productions?

Desi Arnaz made a lot of money from DesiLu Productions. Ball and Arnaz founded their own production company in 1950, called DesiLu Productions. Among the series it produced were I Love Lucy, The Lucy Show, Untouchables, Mission: Impossible, and Star Trek. Prior to being sold to Paramount Television in 1968, the company was the largest independent production company in the United States. 

The majority of DesiLu was owned by both Ball and Arnaz until 1962, two years after their divorce. At that time, Ball bought out Arnaz and ran the company alone for seven years. She sold her shares in Desilu in 1968 for $17 million to Gulf + Western, which later became Paramount Television, worth $132 million in 2020. 

When Ball sold her share of the production house, Desi formed his own production company ‘Desi Arnaz Productions’ that produced the television sitcom ‘The Mothers-In-Law.’

Desi Arnaz, who produced and directed the series, appeared in four episodes in which he used his Ricky Ricardo accent and his characteristic way of mispronouncing words to great effect. He appeared as matador Raphael Delgado y de Acha III, whom the wives called because they had the wrong number. He became something of a family friend.

Recommendation: Make Passive Income Online

How Much Are Desi Arnaz’s Cars Worth?

Since Desi Arnaz is rich, he should own some luxurious cars. Unlike other celebrities, Desi Arnaz did not show up on social media with his cars, so we do not have accurate information about his car collection.

What Houses Does Desi Arnaz Own?

Desi Arnaz owned several houses throughout the United States. The source said Jurupa Community Services Districts paid $2.5 million for his Eastvale home. 14 acres of land surround the 3,500-square-foot home.

Famed actor Desi Arnaz’s Beverly Hills home also went up for sale in 2014 for $6.985 million. Seven bedrooms and six and a half bathrooms were in the 14,440-square-foot mansion.

Desi Arnaz’s Personal Life, Wife and Family

On November 30, 1940, he married the actress Lucille Ball. Although they were mostly unhappy as a couple, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz Jr. were born to them. Their children grew up to be actors.

Ball separated from him in 1960 because he had problems with drinking and affairs with other women. At that time he was ill with diverticulitis. On March 2, 1963, he married Edith Mack Hirsch.

Arnaz and his wife moved to Del Mar, California, where he spent the rest of his life. He owned a farm in Corona, California, where he raised horses and ran Thoroughbred racing.

He also donated money to charities and non-profits, such as San Diego State University.

Desi Arnaz has two stars on the “Hollywood Walk of Fame” for starring in both movies and TV shows.

He smoked four to five Cuban cigars every day. Because of this bad habit, he got lung cancer. Before he fell into a coma, his first wife Ball was with him for a few hours. He died on December 2, 1986, at the age of 69.

How Much Does Desi Arnaz Make a Year?

According to some reports, Desi Arnaz’s annual income is over $1 Million.

FAQs About Desi Arnaz

How rich is Desi Arnaz?

As per the record of media, Desi Arnaz had a net worth of $20 million at the time of his death in 1986.

How tall is Desi Arnaz?

Desi Arnaz is 1.77 m tall.

How old is Desi Arnaz when he died?

Desi Arnaz was born on March 2, 1917, and died on December 2, 1986, at 69 years old.

What did Desi Arnaz say to Lucy before he died?

“I started them off, like two kids on a first date.” Lucie says Arnaz’s last words to Ball were that he loved her and that he hoped she would do well in her upcoming show TV. Lucie also told the people writing the book that her father had become so weak that she had to hold the phone to his ear.

Recommendation: Make Passive Income Online

Favorite Desi Arnaz Quotes

Good things do not come easy. The road is lined with pitfalls.

Desi Arnaz


The success of I Love Lucy is something that happens only once in a lifetime, if you are fortunate enough to have it happen at all.

Desi Arnaz


One of my biggest problems with comedy was that I did not understand some of the jokes.

Desi Arnaz


Drinking intensifies all your pressures and your needs.

Desi Arnaz


American people have the ability to laugh at themselves. It is one of the things that makes this country the great country that it is.

Desi Arnaz


An audience is so important. I would never have had the guts to dub in that big a laugh.

Desi Arnaz


When we got married, nobody gave it more than two weeks. There were bets all over the country, with astronomical odds against us.

Desi Arnaz


Nobody bats 500. We all make mistakes.

Desi Arnaz


I learned a lot in those first years in Miami, while struggling just for survival, by observing my father’s fortitude.

Desi Arnaz


My Latin temper blows up pretty fast, but it goes down just as fast. Maybe that’s why you seldom hear of ulcers in Latin America.

Desi Arnaz


I don’t think anyone can tell you what it is that makes you a star.

Desi Arnaz

The way the Army does things is sometimes a little strange.

Desi Arnaz


An actor who is good at comedy can also be very good at drama, but not necessarily vice versa.

Desi Arnaz


I went to high school with Al Capone.

Desi Arnaz


A single prop that does not look real to an audience can louse you up. The same is true of the smallest flaw in setting up the motivation in a story line.

Desi Arnaz


Al Jolson was one of the greatest entertainers who ever lived.

Desi Arnaz


At times we were criticized for doing too much slapstick. I don’t believe in mild comedy, and neither does Lucy.

Desi Arnaz


Everyone seemed to be doing well except me and my career. And my accent was no helping me any.

Desi Arnaz

View our larger collection of the best Desi Arnaz quotes.

Related Lists of Celebrities’ Net Worth

Or, browse all celebrities’ net worth.

How To Become Rich Like Desi Arnaz?

Desi Arnaz did not become rich by luck. To become as rich as Desi Arnaz, you have to work smart.

Successful people become rich because they take advantage of the opportunities that come their way. They are in the right place at the right time and take the right action.

Thanks to the Internet, the world has changed massively in recent years. Nowadays it has become much easier to make money online.

Instead of looking for a 9-5 job and staying in your comfort zone, it’s better if you become your own boss as soon as possible.

You can learn how to build a digital asset that generates cash flow for you while you sleep to grow your wealth quickly.

If you seize this golden opportunity in time, you can become as successful as Desi Arnaz one day.

Recommendation: Make Passive Income Online

Leave a Comment