The Six Figure Salary of a Stay-At-Home Parent in 2022

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In today’s world, family dynamics are diverse. Parents can be found working from home, in shifts, or even from the sidelines of a soccer game. Due in part to the pandemic, many families have experienced changes in their dynamic over the past two years. Personally, our family has been part of the greater population: we have faced job changes and hard decisions to make daily life doable.

I am currently a full time stay-at-home parent to our three young girls. Admittedly, at times I struggle with seeing the value in what that means for myself.

However, I know it’s valuable for our family dynamic in this chapter. 

What is the value of a full time stay-at-home parent? You may find researched valuations for a fair salary in 2022 shocking…

piggy bank with cashA typical full time stay-at-home parent has numerous roles. Several of the “job” roles could be outsourced to paid help. Using Salary.com and local Seacoast rates, I calculated the pay someone else would receive for the exact same responsibilities.

I did not factor in overtime costs, even though the full time parent NEVER punches out. (Although washing vomit from sheets at 2 am should get double the hourly rate!) However, I did include weekend hours, as many parents work weekend shifts. mom with three kids

Because full time stay-at-home parents do not get a regular review, raise, “atta-boy” or bravo award, make your new year’s resolution an exercise in calculating your worth!

  • House Cleaner: House cleaners in the Seacoast area make an average of $15-$20/hour. House cleaners who add on tasks like organizing closets or cleaning the inside of a refrigerator receive more per hour. 
  • Chef: Meal planning, grocery shopping, and cooking takes considerable time. Does your family have dietary restrictions? You’ll pay more per hour! The average chef’s salary is around $50K per year, or about $25/hour. 
  • Childcare: Nanny salaries vary based on education, experience, and where you live. Our family has two children in elementary school and one in preschool, so we would require a full time nanny, from 7am – 5pm, or 10 hours per day, at $25/hour. 
  • Laundry Service: Until kids learn to do their own laundry, it’s often the task of the parent who is home. Laundry workers earn a median annual salary of $31,200, or $15/hour.
  • Teacher/Tutor/Enrichment Director: Covid is still here. Whether you engage in remote school with a child, or continue to support homework, snow days, and sick days, you would be paid. The annual salary of a teacher is $61K, or about $30/hour. A private tutor will cost between $40-$90/hour. 
  • Chauffeur: I did not list Uber/Lyft driver because a personal chauffeur typically knows the most efficient routes to your regular destinations, and has readily available snacks and water bottles. The median annual salary for a chauffeur is $36K, or $17.30/hour.

In 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shared results of the American Time Use Survey. These pre-pandemic hours for average time spent on household chores and childcare are likely different today.

We attempted to calculate hours spent on various roles and tasks during an average week in our home. A rough estimate looks like:

  • House cleaning: 2 hours/day = 14/week = ~$14,560
  • Chef: 3 hours/day plus 3 hours per week of planning & prep = ~$31,200
  • Childcare: 50 hours/week = ~$65,000
  • Laundry: 5 hours/week = ~$3,900
  • Teacher/Tutor/Enrichment Director: 10 hours/week = ~$20,800
  • Chauffeur: 6 hours/week = $5,398

Factoring in the additional roles of nurse, administrative staff to the family, and event planner, I included a fair annual stipend of $15,000. The grand total of the financial value of a stay-at-home parent in our home is a salary of: $155,828! 

While many stay-at-home parents would say their job is rewarding, it is without a doubt challenging. We often take for granted the many roles a parent plays, without considering the financial value (and cost savings over time) the parent contributes to the family. So what is your worth as a parent? 

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A NH native, Carolyn Prien spent 15 years in NYC and Boston as an elementary teacher and independent school administrator. When her oldest was a year old, she and her husband Justin made the decision to move back to where they could be at the beach or the mountains easily – why choose? Now a mama to three energetic girls, ages 6, 4, and 2, Carolyn spends her days trying to stay in the “thrive” zone with her family as opposed to the “survive” zone. She works part time at the NH Literacy Institutes at UNH and is inspired by the teachers and professors who are equally passionate about education. Nearby grandmothers are her crutch, along with running, her backyard, a minivan, and shameless online shopping. She is always in the middle of a book, because sometimes at the end of the day she just needs to read in silence.