Mother’s Day is a perfect time to recognize moms for all the amazing things they do for their families. But have you ever wondered how much moms (and stay at home dads) should get paid for all their efforts? Plenty of groups have tried to assign a dollar amount to it, including Insure.com, which finds moms should earn $126,725 for the 18 or so jobs she does daily. And Salary.com puts the number much higher at $184,820.
Of course, you can’t really put a number on all the love and nurturing a parent provides, but economists say you can use Labor Department data to figure out the market value of the work moms do. By breaking down how the average stay-at-home mom spends her day and how many hours she spends on various jobs, we can get an idea. According to the Labor Department’s American Time Use Survey, the average married mother who isn’t employed outside the home and has a child under age 18 spends around 6.4-hours a day on childcare and household-related tasks.
Here’s a breakdown of how that time is spent and how much stay-at-home moms would get based on the average pay for those jobs.
- Child care - 2.63 hours. The average hourly wage for day care services is $13.22, so if a stay-at-home mom got paid that much, it comes to $34.77 a day.
- Housework - 1.57 hours. The median hourly wage for housekeepers is $14.40, and if a stay-at-home mom got that pay, she’d earn $22.61 a day for cleaning.
- Food prep and cleanup - 1.79 hours. The average hourly pay for a chef is $24.11, so if a stay-at-home mom earned that much, she’d make $43.16 a day for cooking.
- Travel related to kids - 0.31 hours. The Labor Department says passenger vehicle drivers earn an average of $18.05 an hour, and if a stay-at-home mom made that, she’d get $5.59 a day for driving her kids.
- Lawn and garden care - 0.10 hours. Grounds maintenance workers earn around $17.26 an hour, so a stay-at-home mom would get $1.73 for lawn work if she made that wage.
- Adding all that pay up for 365 days a year would give moms an annual salary of $39,368.90.