How much do you pay a mother’s helper? Well, the answer is: it depends! Here’s how you can determine what to pay a mother’s helper.
This is one of the biggest things that comes up when anyone thinks about having a mother’s helper.
How much it will cost.
Can you afford it? How much does it cost? How much do you have to pay a helper? And, how do you actually pay them? Are they a “contractor” or your “employee?”
And all that jazz.
I’ve got some good news for you today. There are so many possibilities and ways you can go about finding a good mother’s helper that won’t break your bank and will pay your lovely helper a fair wage.
How To Budget (Or Decide What To Pay) For A Mother’s Helper
Let’s dive in and get started.
If you’ve been wondering what’s a fair amount to pay a mother’s helper or whether you can actually afford one in the first place… you’re about to find out.
But first, a rule of thumb when talking about money and value of something.
First, Determine What’s In Your Budget
This is probably the most important thing to do before worrying about how much to pay someone.
Because you have a lot of options about how much to pay, how old the helper is, and how many hours a week they will need to come over.
You can probably get a helper on any budget.
So your actual budget matters.
If you have $200 a month for a mother’s helper, you have the following options.
- You can pay someone $15 an hour and have them come 13 hours a month.
- You can pay someone $10 an hour and have them come 20 hours a month.
- Or you can pay someone $5 (like a child or tween or early teen) and have then come 40 hours a month.
Or anywhere in between.
Figure Out What Your Mother’s Helper Age Range Will Be
You can read all the things you need to consider here, but to make a short and punchy point…
It depends on how much responsibility you want to give your helper.
If you just need some help around the house while you’re there, and have a limited budget, you can pay a much lower rate and hire a tween or pre-teen. This article has an interesting discussion and says $6 or $7 is a fair rate to pay a child.
Now, if you are hiring an adult or teenager over the age of say 15, then you’ll at least adhere to minimum wage in your state or area or perhaps the equivalent of what a daycare worker might get.
According to payscale, a typical daycare worker earns between $9 and $10 to look after multiple children. How many kids will you have them look after?
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Determine Minimum Wage In Your State
Of course, you are in no way limited to only paying minimum wage, but you’ll need to know what it is so you don’t go below it.
Here is an infographic at the time of this writing that represents the minimum wage requirements by state.
Use this as a jumping off point.
Note: According to the department of labor (and it’s a bit fuzzy) you aren’t required to pay minimum wage to anyone until they are 20.
After that, minimum wage is the baseline and the sky is the limit.
So, use your judgment, what you believe to be fair, and feel good about. Compare with what other people of the same age are earning at jobs with similar experience.
Consider Expertise & How Many Kids You Have
If someone has a lot of experience, you’ll pay them more than someone with less experience.
But you want to leave room for giving a raise.
If you are going to be home most of the day and you only have one child, you will likely start lower in your wage range.
Or, if you have multiple kids and are going to be gone most of the time, you may start in the higher range.
Balance Rate With Hours Needed
So, ultimately you’re asking for a certain number, and I haven’t given you a specific one.
But every family is different.
The key is to figure out what you are able to afford per month and how many hours you need someone.
If you have $700 a month to pay for mother’s helper and want someone approximately 15 hours a week, you will land somewhere around $11.50 per hour.
Or, if you can’t find someone for that in your area or live somewhere that pays much more, you’ll have to have fewer hours per week. This is how you arrive at a rate you are able and willing to pay.
Understand Options On How To Pay Your Mother’s Helper
For my long term mother’s helper, I asked how she preferred to be paid from the beginning and went that way. The key is to create an arrangement that everyone feels is winning.
- You can pay at the end of the month for all the hour’s worked that month.
- Alternatively, you can pay at the beginning of the month for the desired amount of hours per month, then bank whatever hours were not worked.
- You can pay at the end of the week for the hours worked that week.
- Also, you can pay for a set amount of hours each month, and bank the hours or days not used. So, for example, if your helper takes a day off, she “owes you” that day but, but still gets paid the same.
- Or, you can only pay for what your helper does, so you are always “current.”
Additionally, you may pay via check, cash, Venmo, or PayPal. Whatever works for your helper and you, works!
- pinpoint an issue
- draw out how it’s affecting you
- label what you don’t like about it
- determine areas of responsibility
- figure out how it’s showing up
- say what you’d rather happen
- brainstorm solutions
Read all the posts in my Mother’s Helper Series
- How to find a mother’s helper you can trust
- 10+ mother’s helper interview questions
- How much to pay a mother’s helper
- Your mother’s helper’s AGE: key considerations
- An in-depth job description for a mother’s helper you can use
- The ultimate guide to having a mother’s helper you’ll love