Every president since John Adams has occupied the White House. It’s a building with as long and colorful a history as the country itself. Today’s mansion contains 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms, although the President and his family live generously in only 27 of the rooms.
Many Presidents have modified the White House in some way, whether by addition, modernization, restoration, or personalization. Who pays for this work? The taxpayers, usually: each new President is given a budget of $100,000 to redecorate. The White House Historical Association, a privately funded foundation, often adds to the largess. In 2009, however, newly elected Barack Obama used only personal funds to redecorate. Continue reading