I could see a cost savings...well sort of. With fewer working royals fewer residences would be needed. KP could be handed over to HRP in whole which would eliminate the cost of security and upkeep. That would leave BP for the Sovereign and CH for the heir with SJP for all the random offices it contains plus an apartment for the heirís heir. With Windsor as a weekend home and Balomoral/Birkhall for vacations they could handover Sandringham to English Heritage eliminating the security cost for that one.
Not everyone who lives in KP is a working royal so it would still be used as a home for royals. Security wouldn't be that much less due to the heritage nature of the palace.
Why would they have to give up their private home of Sandringham? It isn't an occupied palace, anymore than Balmoral is. Sandringham is already open to the public for all bar December-early February and one weekend when Charles and Camilla visit for the Sandringham Garden show and the grounds are open 365 days a year.
English Heritage properties have a great deal of security e.g. The Tower of London probably costs more in security than almost anywhere else. If the income from visitors doesn't cover the security then the taxpayers have to make up the difference or people have to be sacked, as has happened with many such places this year.
I canít remember if the minor working royals lost security (except for engagements) or if it was threatened. But either way that pairs down security from 11 residences (the senior 6) or 15 residences (all working royals) to 5 residences (BP, CH/SJP, WC, BC, & BH)...a cut of anywhere from 50% to 66%. If everyone has security (based on being a working royal alone) that would take security from upwards of 16 adults (at the peak) to 4-6 adults (with two to three adult generations)...another huge decrease. To me that all seems like a big savings on security.
They lost security in 2012 - as part of the reorganisation of the finances tied up with the passing of the Sovereign Grant Act.
Balmoral and Sandringham (along with Birkhall and Sandringham) are PRIVATE properties. They have security paid by the taxpayer only when the monarch is in residence. The rest of the time the security of those homes is paid for privately.
As for the Sovereign Grant...thatís obviously harder. But I would like to see a fake savings buy separating out the funds meant for upkeep of the Occupied Royal Palaces. Obviously the current restoration is not the BRFís fault seeing that the Blair era screwed them over but they still blamed. If the Sovereign only received 10% and an independent committee received the 5% meant for building up keep...optics wise it might work out better.
They actually had that system BEFORE the Sovereign Grant Act. One of the reasons for putting all of the money in one pot was to ensure that the maintenance was being done by those actually living and working in the palaces as needed rather than by some pen pusher in an office who had no real idea of the state of the palaces. It was largely a result of the separation of the finances that saw the palaces get into the state they are in. The Queen would suggest xxxx needed to be repaired but the decision maker would look at their pieces of paper and say 'that isn't scheduled for this year' and so would put it off. Now the Queen says 'xxxx needs to be repaired' and xxxxx is repaired.
Iíd also like to see the heir pay taxes first and then pay official expenses. Charles could probably pull that off now and be ok especially if he didnít have as huge of an office (60 office staff for just 2 people is a bit excessive). Minimal savings but the optics are much better. If the heir could also pay for their own travel (I know thatís not the way the system is set up itís just a thought) it would further benefit the optics of fiscal responsibility compared to spending millions of the SG to fund travel when you receive a 20M+ plus allowance yourself.
Charles started paying taxes (50% of the income from the duchy of Cornwall) when he took over the Duchy. He reduced it to 25% when he married so he had enough money to support Diana. He has been paying taxes for a lot longer than the Queen, who only started doing so in 1992 while Charles was doing so from 1969. I remember when it was announced that he was going to pay the taxes voluntarily at that time as I remember by grandmother talking about the deal George VI made with the government to not pay tax due to having to buy Edward's private properties.
Someone with proper knowledge would need to run real numbers but I do think thereís a way to get decent savings and greatly improve optics.
Possibly but I suspect that those who don't want to believe the true situation still wouldn't do so. The figures are published annually and presented to parliament but still this argument comes up every year.
Interesting fact...at approximately 240,000 sq km of total area (rounded slightly) the UK is smaller than Denmark, Spain, Sweden, and Norway.
The UK may be smaller but the monarch of the UK is also the Head of the Commonwealth - an organisation that covers about 25% of the world's population and so there are more calls on that family than others. The monarch of the UK is also the monarch of 15 other realms some of which are a lot larger than the area of the countries you listed.