A Stay-At-Home Mom’s Salary Is $117,000.

According to a study over at Salary.com, stay at home Moms deserve a salary of about $117,000 while working Moms deserve $68,000. The study says that a lot of that income would come from overtime due to the fact that Moms work all the time in the home, but the figure is actually down from last years salary – meaning Moms would be making less like so many other people in the world!

In my opinion, a good Mom is worth much more than $117,000 – in fact, I would venture to say that you cannot even put a number on their worth. Sure, there are Moms that don’t do much of anything – but the majority of Moms work incredibly hard at being a good Mom – and sometimes are not really recognized for their work.

So kudos to you Moms – if you were to get paid, check out how much people think you should be making!

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Comments (22)

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  1. A good mom is worth WAY more than $117,000 – especially when you figure what the per hour salary would be for all the overtime they put in! 😉

  2. Llama Money says:

    Sorry to be the one who disagrees, but I’ve always felt those measurements were such a load of crap. In homes where both parents work a day job, what happens? All that work that the mother alone would be doing is then split between both parents. In other words, they have things much harder. A day job and half of the “stay at home mom” work. So does that mean I deserve a $58,500 raise for my half?

    Also, in this scenario, who exactly is the employer? The lady isn’t working for her husband. She’s doing everyday, real life chores.

    The life of a stay at home mom is much, much simpler than one who works AND does things around the home.

  3. @Llama Money – IN THEORY you make a good point. However, being that I am a working mother with a husband who works at home… I can honestly say that the work load is rarely split 50/50. On a good day, I work 8 to 5 and he handles dinner, on an average day, I can get him to lay something out for dinner (after the 3rd call to remind him). I’m still responsible for the laundry, the grocery shopping, half of the meals, and chauffering the children.

    Now, there are days when I’m totally spoiled and lazy. I’m one of the lucky ones. Never fool yourself into thinking that working mothers have it easier at home!

    As to my opinion about the worth of a mother’s salary…. hmmm… I’ll be paid in hugs, kisses, smiles, giggles, and flowers picked from my gardens, please 🙂 Money is nice… but totally doesn’t come close to the real pay of being a mom.

  4. Curt says:

    @Llama Money – What happens with two-parent income families is that their isn’t enough time to get everything done. So, they either outsource (hire others for day-care, cleaning, lawn work, house work, etc.) or things just don’t get done like gardening, spring cleaning, shopping for good deals at garage sales, homeschooling, etc.

    I do agree, two working parents have it much harder, and they aren’t getting ahead financially. If families take a good look at the actual numbers, most (not all) dual-income families are not actually getting ahead financially.

  5. Llama Money says:

    Momma: Sounds like you have a lazy husband. UNLESS he’s putting in tons of hours ( is he working a 40 hour week or a 60 hour week? ).

    Curt: The only thing we outsource is daycare. The rest gets done by us, or not at all. Definitely a tough situation, but “that’s life” as they say. I will say the garden definitely could use some work though 🙂

  6. AA says:

    @Curt: I disagree about outsourcing. Some do, but many can’t afford it.
    @Llama Money: Dads are taking a bigger role now, but the workload is rarely split 50/50. I do agree that the measurements are skewed since many of the SAHM’s chores have to be done by everyone regardless of whether or not they work .. or even have a child.

    Both my parents worked full-time and they didn’t have enough to outsource all those chores. My mother worked her tushie off making sure the house was sparkling, the budgets were kept, and there was dinner on the table every night. I want to add that dinner wasn’t McD’s or a pizza, she cooked a full meal from scratch with veggies. The lawn was always beautiful (Seriously, she had a stranger mail her photographs b/c they drove by and thought it was gorgeous.) While I’m bragging, she also managed to get her PhD .. in mathematics!! I have no idea how she did it and secretly think she never slept. My Dad is a good guy, but he did not put in 50% of the work even if he did mow the lawn. I 100% agree that my mother deserved $100K and more for her efforts while I was growing up.

    That said, I do NOT believe every stay at home Mom “earns” that much. Some do, some don’t. Take a look at any company and you’ll see employees who earn every dollar they are paid. You’ll also find employees who, based on their efforts, should be making a lot less.

  7. Emily says:

    I’ve done both – worked as a mom and stayed home as a mom. For me, I don’t see how anyone who hasn’t done them both can say one is harder than the other. They both have their unique challenges. I will say that I think I work WAY harder staying at home than when I went to work.

    I have to completely disagree with a blanket statement like “The life of a stay at home mom is much, much simpler than one who works AND does things around the home.” That may be true for some, but that would be like me making some sweeping generalization about working mothers with no basis.

    We all want to validate and justify what we choose for our lives and I think the point of the post was just to emphasize that women who stay home and don’t bring in a salary aren’t bon-bon eating simpletons and deserve credit for their unpaid work.

    I do agree with “I’ll be paid in hugs, kisses, smiles, giggles, and flowers picked from my gardens, please 🙂 Money is nice”¦ but totally doesn’t come close to the real pay of being a mom.”

  8. Llama Money says:

    Well to me it’s a bit like a math problem. Let’s call a dayjob “A” and housework “B”. If you work a dayjob, then your total work is A+.5B. ( Half of the housework ) If you’re a SAHM then your total work is B. For a SAHM mom to work “harder” than a working person, then you would have to agree that .5B > A. That is, doing half of the housework is harder than doing an entire 40+ hour per week day job.

    Maybe I’m one of those “sexist pigs” who “just doesnt understand”, I don’t know. But I find it completely irrational to believe that one-half of the housework is more difficult to do than an entire dayjob / career.

    Even if you make the ( faulty ) assumption that a working mom will do 70% of the housework, then the equation still fails the logic test. Is 70% of the housework “harder” than an entire dayjob / career? I do not believe that to be the case.

  9. Emily says:

    You’re only talking about housework. Apparently the parenting of the kids part is of zero value? 😉

    A working mother goes to her job and leaves her children with someone else and comes home. Her and her partner share cooking/cleaning/child interaction in the evenings and on weekends.

    A stay at home mom does all of it at the same time. Doesn’t have someone home to entertain the kids while she scrubs the toilet and hangs the laundry. It’s not that I am trying to say that one is better or worse but they are just totally different.

    When my hubby is home on weekends, it is SO MUCH easier because things can be split up like what you are describing and there is more of a balance with the work that needs to be done. For many many hours of the week, the balance is skewed toward an at home parent doing all of it. I am the first to admit that my hubby works his butt off at his job and at home too and does more than me. Not all working parents do. But that doesn’t devalue what I do each and every day.

    Not all out of home jobs are created equal either. Many people don’t work labor intensive and strenuous “hard” jobs all day but because they are making money, they are valued more and considered to be doing more. And not all parents who stay home do housework all day. To generalize that everyone who works out of the home works hard would be the same as me saying that every mother works hard in the home. Neither is true.

  10. david says:

    I have to weigh in here – no corporate job, I dont care what it is, is more important than raising children you decide to have, whether it be by a dad or the mom. None. I also know for a fact that my big, well-paying corporate job was the easiest job ever, and much easier than what any mom, working or not working, has to do all day – I sat in my private office, in my big comfy chair, looked out my window, watched cable tv, laid down on my couch, and pressed buttons on a keyboard.

    So while some jobs might be more difficult (say, more manual-type work), to say that doing 70% of the housework easier than an entire dayjob / career is a bit much, and probably incredibly insulting to moms that do 50% of the housework, never mind 70 or 100%. It’s not apples to apples – raising a kid(s) and running a house is a lot harder than most jobs.

  11. Llama Money says:

    David: You may have had the world’s best job. If you can lay down on your couch and watch TV while getting paid… buddy I would have trouble giving that up. I don’t think most workplaces are like that.

    I certainly don’t mean to be insulting to SAHM’s. Simply pointing out that being a SAHM is far easier than having both parents work. FWIW with a SAHM in the picture, the working parent has life easy too – no housework to do when he gets home.

    And at the risk of sounding sexist and evil ( more than I already do ), it’s still difficult for me to imagine someone filling up 40 hours per week with housework. Unless the family consists of 8 children, or the entire family is made up of complete slobs.. the numbers just don’t work. There is only so much cooking / cleaning / laundry that a person can do in a week.

    Emily: Of course being a parent has value. However, once children are of school age, they spend very little time in daycare. Most of the time they are in school. My son spends less than 2 hours per day in daycare – the rest of the time he is either in school or with my wife or me. So once a SAHM’s kids reach school age, then we’re back to where we started – easy street. Before school age, sure it’s tougher. Crying babies certainly aren’t much fun when you’re trying to get things done.

  12. david says:

    It doesn’t have to be 40 hours of “housework” – my mom was a SAHM and volunteered at our school library, worked parent-teacher conferences, helped with our homework, drove us around to afterschool sports, etc etc etc the list went on. So it’s not like after she sent us off to school she did an hour of cleaning and then sat in the yard sunning herself for the next 7. “There is only so much cooking / cleaning / laundry that a person can do in a week.” – that’s where I think you are going about your thinking all wrong – that is not what all SAHM’s do all day!

    And while not every corporate job involves laying on a couch like I did (ok, not all the time), my friends that do work corporate jobs have a lot of perks like that.

  13. Llama Money says:

    I go to parent-teacher conferences. I help my son with his homework. Sports too. And I manage to do all this while working 70+ hours per week.

    Volunteering at the library? That’s good for her, certainly a good cause. But entirely optional – it’s not a responsibility that goes with being a SAHM.

    Off-topic – what kind of industry did you work in? It might be time for a career change for me.

  14. david says:

    TV. 🙂 I live in Los Angeles, at least for a few more weeks.

  15. When I was growing up, both my parents worked. They couldn’t afford to outsource, so they just left things undone. I did my homework myself. No one cooked. We ate junk food. My mother did keep the house clean and do the laundry, though. When the two of them got home, they plopped themselves in front of the TV, and that was that. Stay at home mothers who do all the things they should be doing (not watching Oprah and gabbing on the phone) are worth a lot. However, a lot of them do not do the things worth the numbers mentioned in the study; and a lot of the couples who do work leave things undone too — so they have no extra points coming. I tip my hat to all those who do put dinner on the table and help the kids with their homework — whether they work or not — because I never got that.

  16. Tom says:

    I completely agree with this. After watching my friend raise her kid, they deserve all the money in the world. It’s a job that’s never ending BUT it’s defintely rewarding 🙂

  17. […] 16, 2008 at 4:24 pm (Uncategorized) My Two Dollars had a recent post about a Salary.com study, which found Stay-At-Home-Moms (SAHMs) deserve an annual salary of […]

  18. fluffy banana says:

    and now you sit in a big comfy chair at home. look out the window, lay down on the couch and push buttons on a keyboard, WHENEVER YOU FEEL LIKE IT.. how is that different?
    please dont insult the people of this country who actually put in 8 hours a day working at a real job.

  19. fluffy banana says:

    kids are an excellent excuse for dropping out of the real world dont you think?

  20. david says:

    Fluffy, who are you talking to like that?

  21. Comments like this one and many others I have seen on pf blogs recently have shown me there are A LOT of bitter people out there. What fluffy and other disgruntled people need to realize is that they have much more control over their lives than they feel they have. If you find yourself in a bitter part of life, most likely it’s because of choices you made or didn’t make in the past that put you on that road.

  22. David says:

    Thanks Joe, you got that right. Bitter people not happy with themselves or others need to step up to the plate and fix their situation. Not all of us sit around all day complaining about how our life is; we do something about it.