Ever wonder what living in the White House is like? That's easy - it's weird! Life in the White House for the first family (its only permanent residents) is like a cross between living in a fortress, a resort, and a museum... but somehow stranger. Do you want to know what it's like to not carry money or credit cards for four years? How about being the leader of the free world, but still having crappy Wi-Fi?
The truth about what is it like to live in the White House is definitely stranger than fiction. Forget The West Wing: In the actual White House, the president and his family are billed for every meal they eat that isn't business-related; presidential children are sneaking up to the roof; and even the most powerful person in the world is scooping up dog poop. Enjoy these and many more facts about living in the White House: It's your patriotic duty!
The West Wing Is Full Of Roaches And Mice
In 2017, White House officials submitted numerous requests for repairs and new equipment. But the most eye-opening request was for pest control to eradicate the mice getting into the Situation Room and the Navy's mess hall in the White House. There are roaches in the West Wing, too.
Carpet Stains From First Pets Aren't Always Removed Immediately
You would think someone would quickly take care of pet stains from the White House carpets, but this is not always the case. It's unclear if other administrations' pets left a mess behind, but there is one little legacy that has been confirmed. Obama family biographer Jodi Kantor says that thanks to the Bush family's cats, stains remained on the carpet when the Obamas took residence in the White House.
The President Is Billed Every Month For Food And Incidentals
There's no free lunch (or breakfast, brunch, or dinner) for the first family: All presidents and their families have to pay for their own food, dry cleaning, toothpaste, and other incidentals while in office, and they're billed at the end of the month. The sticker shock caught Nancy Reagan off-guard, as she claimed nobody had informed her or President Reagan about having to personally pay for what they used.
There's no charge, however, for food served at White House state functions - the taxpayers take care of this.
There Is No Private Entrance Or Exit To The Residence
It makes sense the first family can't just come and go as they please, but did you know they do not have any private entrances or exits where they live? It's one of the downsides to living in a combination fortress/museum. Staff and tourists have access to the Diplomatic Room - close to where the entrance to the living quarters is located - during regular operating hours, so the first family has to crouch behind brown screens to avoid detection.