The Value of a SAHD

Of course the true value of having DH stay home with Aellyn goes way beyond anything that could be quantified but let’s try anyways.

How Much We Save:

One of the ways often used to decided if a parent will stay at home is how much money it would save you.  

Child Care

The day care center at my work is very well priced but to approximate the one-on-one I’ll use the price of the top-of-the-line, low ratio daycare in the area:  $240 per week for 52 weeks per year – that’s $12,480 per year.

Housework

He does nearly all the housework.  In our area that type of service would cost about $125 per week – that’s $6,500 per year.  Of course we wouldn’t do this but then the house would be messier, we’d have to spend our precious family time cleaning, and we’d be much more stressed.

Cooking

DH makes yummy meals 5 days a week (and seriously, he doesn’t slack and make hotdogs he really makes gourmet stuff).  A prepared meal delivery can cost anywhere from $50-70 per meal.  That’s $18,200 per year.  Of course we wouldn’t do this but we would eat out more (which costs $) and eat much less healthy if we were both working.  His cooking is good for our health.
Total Annual Savings:  $37,180

On the Open Market:

Another way to put a dollar value on DH staying home is how much money he would make at each job he does in our market.

Child Care

The average day care center teacher salary in my area is $12.85 according to Salary.com.  I use the teacher salary instead of the worker salary since I think that better approximates the one-on-one interaction Aellyn gets.  So that is an annual salary of $26,166.40.

Housework

I basically don’t have to clean my house at all anymore since DH does such a good job.  We always shared this job after both of our working hours.  I can’t stress enough the value I place on not having this second job after my day job.  The average salary for a housekeeper according to Salary.com for my area is $9.28 per hour.  They also average 16.5 hours a week so that’s $7,962. 24 annually. 

Coooking

He does all the weekday cooking.  The average salary for a cook is $12.85 for about 13 hours per week. That’s $8,686.66 annually.

Total Annual Salary:  $42,815.30
I’m sure there are many other ways to calculate the “value” of a stay-at-home parent.  Check out Salary.com’s analysis here (unfortunately “mom” centric).  I think it can be a great exercise to help you think about what you are doing.

And, honey, no – I’m not going to start paying you.  😛


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3 thoughts on “The Value of a SAHD

  1. Excellent point. Having a SAHP saves in SO many ways. Meals are usually healthier. There is time to shop for bargains and thrift clothes and save money. Home repairs can be done more cheaply…. the list goes on.

    For us the clincher is child care. Three goombas in daycare would cost quite a bit more than a parent’s salary.

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  2. Alas, although my husband is a SAHD, he is NOT a ‘house-husband’ and, well, quite frankly has a little trouble with multi-tasking. He does not cook or clean. My son’s typical lunches are something like nuts, crackers, and carrots. I cook dinner when I get off work. We hire someone to do a good scrubbing once or twice a month and between cleanings I maintain what I can. Oh well, at least my little one is well entertained during the day.

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